i hadn't thought i'd make it down to the OC early enough because the bean took a super-extended nap, but yay - i was here!
i found the girls easily, and i ordered my usual - a nice, tall glass of ice water. heh. in my defense, i knew we had lots of food and drinks ahead of us - for free, even.
we laughed and chatted for a while, and when it was time to pay the bill, we all just about fell over with laughter and disgust when diame pulled some nasty ass 3-day-old KFC out of her bag.
i literally gasped and pointed when rachael whipped out her card to pay her share of the wonderfully lucky check. i. must. have. one. of. these. the card, not the bill.
as we left, i found myself right behind her on the way to the fairgrounds. i had a good idea of how to get there (and i had the navi on my trusty iPhone anyway), but having her to follow was great. i totally forgot to thank her for leading the way. oops.
because i am a super nerd, i'd stuck these in my bag - you know, just in case someone got an owie and needed a band-aid. hey, it could happen.
check out diame and her ultra cool "ed hardie" [sic] glasses! wow, those are some colorful lucky fish right thurr. and although it was taken much later in the evening, jessica modeled them too as we all giggled.
FGD, whose husband is also member of yelp's elite, found us and stole diame away as all parties had to be together to check in. they were somewhere up closer to the front of the line, and diame waved happily as they left to join mr. FGD.
i tried to avert my eyes as we passed the scary ass clown, but my desire to capture him for your viewing pleasure trumped my fright. do you see what i do for you?
it was fun to walk through the fairgrounds sans crowds, bad stroller drivers, and children hopped up on sugar and soda.
claire, the reporter, and i laughed our asses off as we approached this sign, which featured a supremely unfortunate choice of fonts. what does it look like to you? heh.
weird al was the focus of one of the fair's attractions - an educational 3D movie. and i didn't get to see the man in person, but jessica did - i totally swiped the picture she took of him to share.
stopping for a potty break before hitting the party, i was pretty amazed at how nice and clean the restroom was. "the fair hasn't started yet, though," claire reminded me. oh, yeah.
these signs outside the "baja blues" building told us that we were finally there.
for a non-drinker, i was sure excited for this stuff. and i didn't hesitate to snap up one of each of the two specialty cocktails, the "bakon mary" (sprinkled with bacon salt) and a "bakon chocolate martini":
the bakon mary was really good. in fact, that's exactly how i'd always envisioned drinking bacon-flavored vodka. the chocolate martini was a little odd - FGD hated it, but diame seemed to dig it. she drank hers and mine. heh.
along with the bacon extravaganza, the event also featured a taste of some of the deep-fried goodies that the fair is offering this year. check out this gastronomic delight - a corn dog with a healthy-ish twist. i give you - the zucchini weenie.
it was SO good. i'm already contemplating making some at home. yum. and then we hit up the real stuff - bacon wrapped meatballs, bacon wrapped cocktail weenies, bacon wrapped shrimp, and bacon with brown sugar and cayenne pepper. i was in hog heaven. i ate myself silly, but i eventually wound it down when i realized that everyone else was stuffed and had stopped eating. i swear - i have a bottomless pit freaking stomach. i could totally have kept going.
later, as claire and the reporter and i stood in the redonkulously long line for a bacon burger, we spied this dude in front of us rocking quite a unique boy-bedazzled hoodie. with my camera around my neck the entire night, i picked it up and snapped away - with a piece of chocolate-covered bacon in hand.
i don't know how long we waited, but giggling and gabbing helped pass the time until we finally got to the table and caught sight of what awaited us: a burger created with 50% ground beef, 50% bacon, topped with avocado and a fried egg, and served with a dollop of baconnaise and a pumpkin dipping sauce. it was totally worth the wait - the burger was super delicious (yes, i love that phrase), and the baconnaise is so yummy. i know, i know, it sounds disgusting as all hell, but man, did it add some fantastic flavor. i hope i can find it somewhere and not have to order it online.
here's a bunch of stuff i didn't actually try. i saw no bacon in those chips and salsa, the BLTs didn't look appealing, the lobster mac & cheese had already received bad reviews from the group (how sad!), and, well, i don't do maker's mark.
a funnel cake eating contest was supposed to happen, but it either didn't happen or i just completely missed it. they did put out three of these gigantic funnel cakes, and while i love that stuff, i don't do community food. at least, not when 97 other people are involved. and, that dude had his hands all up in it! gross. what if he'd just taken a dump to make room, and then headed to the table to reach for a little dessert? no, thanks.
this next bit is either going to gross you the eff out, or make your mouth water. obviously, you know which reaction i had. and while i still want to try that vosges bacon bar, this was a great sneak preview of what i anticipate it to taste like. everyone at the table admitted that it was really good - especially with a sprinkle of salt on top, as the girl who served it suggested.
"dammit! i should've brought a ziploc bag to take some of this shit home!" i'd half-jokingly muttered to claire. and then i thought, OMG. i'm SUCH a filipino chick. holy shit. that's the kind of thing my mom or grandma would do.
(and at the end of the evening, there was a plate with about four pieces of uneaten chocolate-covered bacon on it. i swiped that shit and put it in my purse.)
yay for OC BFFs!
until jessica showed these off, we had no idea there was a photo booth at our disposal.
sponsored by red cheese, a vendor i'd heard of from my wedding planning days, this photo booth is available for rental for parties, weddings, private use in whatever way you can imagine. bow chicka bow wow.
as we made our way out of baja blues, we paused for a few more photo ops. i LOVE hanging with folks who love to take pictures [almost] as much as i do!
we'd all seen this dude wandering through the party and loved his shirt. i hadn't had the balls to ask him if i could take a picture, but claire sure did. "he's a chef," one of his friends explained. mmm-kay.
noting that i'd managed to score a hug from the normally-non-huggy diame, claire tried to get one, too. do you love diame's face here? i sure do!
along with mr. FGD, jessica's hub was the only other male in our group. i'd met him once before, and he was as nice as ever. lucky for me, he didn't smack me upside the head for the zillion times i handed him my camera and asked him to snap a shot for me.
this sign was just wrong. so wrong that claire ran to pose in front of it.
more silly photo ops. whee! i'm an honorary OC'er.
another must-take. of course.
i was trying to take a picture of another silly fair sign that i thought was funny and this random ass dude jumped in. and then i decided that the sign wasn't really funny at all and didn't bother to do a retake. oh, and here's a story about how gullible i am: as i snapped it, i guffawed and growled "oh, nice." he glanced over at me, pointed at my nametag, and said "hey, wan! i read your reviews all the time!" i was all "oh, cool, really?" he kind of snickered and said "well, yeah, i think so. but i'm thinking there may be other "wan"s on yelp." oy. my name IS super common. butthole.
in the parking lot, there were hugs all around, and that was it! i was so grateful to claire for including me in the pork party. i had pilfered pig candy, three yelp-themed reusable grocery bags, a handful of yelp buttons and stickers, and even a yelp lip balm in my bag. i'd grubbed down on a ton of bacon-wrapped and deep-fried delicacies, and i was one happy camper.
life is good.