I'm Sorry Wilmer Valderrama
First and foremost, I want to apologize to Wilmer Valderrama. I didn't make it to your Tide/Covergirl tent on Sunday during the Calle Ocho festival last weekend. You're a young handsome, talented, and successful man who deserves attention. P.S. I'm single, bilingual, and ready to mingle.
Stephanie Rodriguez At Calle Ocho
However, let's be clear about one thing and one thing only -- IT WASN'T MY FAULT.
I had no clue where your tent was in the madness of the out-of-towners, crazies, Pitbull connoisseurs, old Cuba enthusiasts, and thong-showing chongas. It was nearly impossible to walk the streets of Calle Ocho without noticing all the different ethnicities coming together for the biggest festival of the year in Miami.
I know that seeing you in person, after all these years of watching That 70s Show re-runs, was unlikely. Why? Because "Who the hell knows where the corner of Beacon Avenue and Eighth Street is?" -- which is where you were supposed to be. "Que? Que?" I kept hearing everyone say each time I approached someone for directions.
Don't be mad, Papo. I wanted to meet you. I really did. But, I was a bit distracted by the salsa on the streets, the $2 beers, and the $3 pan-con-lechon sandwiches. Did I mention I found arepas for $4? What a steal! Too bad I didn't settle for those and got $5 ones later. The number one lesson I learned is, don't settle for a $10 pan-con-lechon when the vendor next door is selling it for a quarter of the price -- that's Miami for you, baby!
You know what else Miami is? Coming across people with tattoos that read "Established in 1991." After all, everyone needs a little reminder about the year that they decided to declare themselves to the world. You know what I also enjoyed watching? The random infomercials like "Miracle Kitchen Plus" demonstration. As if the beer, food, and concert stages weren't enough, I could buy a food processor too!!
I'm so sorry Wilmer. I also had to come to the rescue for a couple from Germany, Andrea and Thomas Horn, when they told me that they were looking for vegan food. Pobrecitos. I had to tell them that they weren't in Kansas anymore (or should I say Germany!).
Speaking of tourists, the family from Detroit I bumped into seemed to have no problem getting around. The middle-aged matriarch of the group yelled "We're from Detroit -- that's right!" with the same je ne sais quoi that the Miami ghetto endures.
I'm sure glad I bumped into Channel 10's anchors Laurie Jennings and Calvin Hughes to keep myself grounded. I couldn't help but notice how good Calvin broke it down to Latin hip-swaying music. It was also incredibly adorable how Laurie kept trying to keep up with him.
After our photo op, I continued to try to make it out to you to see if maybe I'd at least get a 2-minute interview and photo-op with you, Wilmer, but nothing seemed to work.
After miles and miles of walking, my legs couldn't take the exhaustion anymore.I started to accept that I might never find Beacon Avenue. So, before I left the party of the year, I decided to move my ass one last time to some heavy Dominican merengue by 74-year-old Johnny Ventura. He's 74-years-old. But, the man looks and acts like he's in his 40s. True story.
So anyway I left Calle Ocho after scratching my Ventura performance itch and left around 6:30 p.m. Then suddenly, I saw a sign a great big sign that read "Beacon Avenue," and I shouted Fred Flintstone's famous line, but with a twist, "Wilmer!!!!!!!!!"
-- Stephanie Rodriguez