MEETING TYLER OAKLEY
I've been watching YouTube since forever, since people were raving about Shanaynay's third eyebrow and that crazy baby that bit that kid's finger. I've subscribed to hundreds of channels, checked new videos daily, even uploaded videos myself!
(And yes, I realize that telling you that I have a YouTube channel is essentially inviting you in to watch all of my videos, but...just no. Don't even go there.)
What I mean to say is that approximately 68.47% of my life is spent watching other people talk to the Internet.
So when my friend said that she wanted to go to Tyler Oakley's book signing at the Barnes & Noble by my school, I was more than thrilled. I was ecstatic.
I mean, it gave me an excuse to go see one of the YouTube gurus that I had been watching since the beginning. It was a way to get a signed copy of his new book (*cough cough name drop* Binge *cough cough*) and also get a MOTHER FLIPPIN' PHOTO-OP WITH HIM. INSTAGRAMMABLE PERFECTION.
Normally, I won't go out of my way to buy a YouTuber's book. It seems like every single person who spends at least three hours of their time a week sitting in front of a DSLR camera and editing footage on their Mac has decided to write a memoir, and ain't nobody got the money to buy each and every one of them. I promised myself that, if I wasn't into a YouTuber enough to check their social media constantly in order to know their whereabouts/make a clever subtweet/get a like, retweet, or DM, I wouldn't buy their book unless it was signed.
Don't get me wrong--I originally ordered a signed copy of Binge when it was first released. I even made my mom order it on her phone because I didn't think there was enough time to turn on my laptop and buy it myself. But then there was a whole debacle over the B&N order being held back because Binge was a pre-ordered book and the person we were speaking to on the phone wrongly cancelling ONLY BINGE in our order even though there were NO COPIES LEFT.
To sum it up, Barnes & Noble messed up, big time.
And then I tried ordering it from Amazon UK like the slick chick I am
BUT then Amazon realized that I don't have a UK credit card, so they were all "Whoops! Even though we have international shipping, no can do, Americano. Sorry b!"
I thought all was lost, until my saving Grace ;) came along and said she wanted to go to the Tyler Oakley event as well. I wasn't about to go alone, so now I had a professional fangirl alongside me to join me in my quest to finally acquire a signed book.
And a quest it was.
I had to rush to Barnes & Noble during my lunch period, breathlessly ask the cashier where to find Binge for today's event, and hand over my wrist to be slowly suffocated with the holy grail of wristbands. As soon as I had that piece of gray paper circled around my wrist, signifying I was fit to meet the Professional Fangirl, I could breathe easily and eat my ham sandwich. The rest of my school day passed with the same monotony as usual, tinged with the excitement of knowing that, in just a few hours, I would be able to meet one of my YouTube heroes.
After school, Grace and I sat down on her scarf and waited for the Golden Gates (aka revolving doors) to open for a few hours, exchanging stories and complaining about senior year. Once the clock struck 7pm, the line of teenagers stretching around and around the block suddenly rose and began to snake inside B&N. Let's just say that people were excited.
There was even more waiting, but instead of on the gray leaf-littered sidewalk, we were penned into a zig-zaggy line surrounded by people who screamed every time a security guard walked past. At the front of the line, we were asked to put our phones away, hand over our backpacks (I felt really bad for the guy that had to handle mine...he had a workout), and calm our pants.
And there he was, smiling behind the barricade of bookshelves and B&N posters.
My first impression of him was that he was very small and cheery, like a little elf. He was dressed impeccably (hey Tyler, if you could tell me where you got your jacket, that'd be positively swell).
When it was my turn to meet the queen himself, he smiled at me, wrapped me in the most welcoming hug, and asked how I was doing. I gave him my name (Caitlin), and HE RECOGNIZED ME FROM TWITTER...potentially.
If you want his exact words, he asked me what my Twitter handle was (@CoderCaitlin if you didn't already know), and he said that he had seen it before.
AAAAAAAHHHHHHH. IS THIS REAL.
Also apparently we look like we're related :)