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I Went To The Grammys Last Night And This Is What I Learned

Hello from the other side (aka the nosebleeds).

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The 58th Grammy Awards happened last night and I, a mere commoner, somehow scored a ticket to the big show. This is what I learned in my Grammys experience.

1. You'll learn that picking out an outfit is really, really stressful.

Sam Stryker / BuzzFeed

When I found out I was going to the Grammys, the first thought I had was, DAMN, I need to find a fire outfit for the show. Unfortunately, I'm not a celebrity, so I didn't have any stylists or designers who wanted to dress me for the show. My ticket said "Black-Tie Attire," but I also didn't want to spend any money on my outfit because I'd rather spend it on alcohol and hummus. But ultimately I knew a good Instagram was at stake, so I decided I HAD to look fierce — plus, anyone who doesn't dress up when they're in the presence of Beyoncé is ASKING for trouble. Luckily, I was able to borrow my ENTIRE outfit (aside from my underwear LOL) and I still looked dapper. It meant I spent a few hours trying on stuff to make sure it fit and worked, but in the end, sweating it out (literally and figuratively) was worth it.

2. You'll quickly realize that getting to the Grammys is the longest journey of your life.

My ticket said I had to be in my SEAT at 4:45 sharp and I was worried if I wasn't, Taylor Swift might personally scold me for being late, so I called a Lyft at 3:15. Once we got close to the arena where the Grammys were held, everything became a total free-for-all clusterfuck. My Lyft driver, Adam, and I were the lone Prius in a sea of big black SUVs. I kept on trying to see if celebrities were in the cars next to us, but had no luck. In what might be the most L.A. problem ever, I had to get out of my car because there was so much traffic and walk three blocks in my suit in 90-degree heat to get to an awards show. Then there was a security line, and THEN I had to climb several flights of stairs to get to my seat. You don't just GO to the Grammys, you have to FIGHT to make it to the Grammys. And I mean that literally, not figuratively.


3. You'll be walking through what seems like a pretty people convention.

Sam Stryker / BuzzFeed

I felt like I was going to the most intense prom of all time, because Taylor Swift and Lady Gaga were going to be performing instead of a mediocre DJ. The guys were in tuxes, and all the ladies were in nice dresses. It was kind of fun, but also confusing, because it was difficult trying to figure out who was famous and who was just dressed nice for the evening.

FYI, this picture here is of the Grammys McDonald's and it was POPPIN', plus I thought it was funny how everyone in line for Big Macs and fries was in formal wear. Only at the Grammys!

4. Don't worry about where you're seated — even the "bad" seats are pretty damn cool.

On the left is the Grammys stage basically from floor level and on the right is the stage from where I was seated. As you can tell, my seats were NOT the best in the house — I was high up in the nosebleeds with all the "normal" people. There wasn't even really a screen where we could see the show being broadcast as we watched live. But just being in the building was enough to be excited about, TBH.

5. You don't realize how cool it is to witness music history until you're actually at the show.


I knew I was in for a big night — not just from the performances, but whenever you get a few hundred celebrities in the same room, craziness is bound to ensue. But what's cool about seeing the show live is you realize exactly how big these moments are. I knew immediately that Taylor Swift made a subtle but hard dig at Kanye West, that Adele was off-key, and that Demi Lovato slayed her Lionel Richie tribute.

Basically, you never know what's going to happen at the Grammys, but you know whatever DOES happen is going to be big — and one day I can tell my grandkids I witnessed a key battle in World War III (aka the eternal T. Swift–Kanye feud).

6. Get ready for the hardest workout of your entire damn life.

CBS / Via

Awards shows are stereotyped as too long. And guess what: Not only ARE they too long, but they are physically taxing on the body, like a SoulCycle class except you're literally sitting down watching celebs the entire time (actually, that sounds like some normal SoulCycle classes, so never mind).

The Grammys were almost four hours long. The only thing I enjoy doing for that long is sleeping and even then I like to take frequent bathroom breaks. During those nearly four hours, I had nothing to eat, sipped a little water from a water fountain, and got up to pee ONCE because I didn't want to disturb my rowmates. There was no intermission, only commercial breaks where you had four minutes to sprint to the bathroom and get back to your seat. I even saw a dude in front of me totally wipe out to get to his chair. The Grammys are NOT for the faint of heart.

Basically, Tori Kelly's reaction is ALL of us by the fourth hour of the Grammys.


7. Be prepared to pay attention for cool behind-the-scenes moments.


The performances are awesome, but it's really cool to see what happens when the cameras aren't on the stars. While the people next to me were talking about Adele, I SAW Adele rushing from her seat to get offstage to prepare for her performance. I wanted to yell at them for not paying attention when Adele was ACTUALLY in front of them, but that seemed excessive. You see different celebrities go up to Taylor Swift to say "Hello," and you see Lady Gaga pose for photos.

But perhaps the funniest thing that happened off-camera was that before the show started, the head producer of the show was yelling at everyone on the floor (aka lots of famous people) to clear the main aisle so the show could start on time. It was a literal celebrity traffic jam!

8. ...but also get ready to realize the show isn't for you, but for viewers at home.

Sam Stryker / BuzzFeed

Being inside an awards show is insanely cool, but you also quickly realize that the show is really for everyone at home on the couch, and that makes sense. There were 20,000 people in the Staples Center versus millions at home watching on TV — you do the math.

For instance, sometimes performers didn't face the audience while performing, because another angle was better for TV. And the announcer over the PA constantly had to tell the audience to applaud for TV. And the main stage was sort of split into three smaller stages (as captured above on my iPhone 5) so one could be used for a performance while the others were being set up. You just have to remind yourself that you're breathing the same air as Adele and everyone at home isn't, and you feel better.

9. You're also probably going to be quiet and seated for most of the show.

CBS / Via

But the craziest thing about being at the Grammys was how quiet people were during performances. There was some cheering — for instance, when Demi Lovato blew it out of the water, and during Gaga's Bowie tribute — but for the most part, the audience was very quiet and also in their seats — not typical concert behavior. People may make fun of Taylor Swift's awkward awards-show dancing, but I think everyone could take a page out of her book and have a little more fun.

10. At the end of the night, you know that you've witnessed history...but you're just ready to go home.

Instagram: @samstryker

By the time the show wrapped up, I knew I had witnessed music history. I was in the presence of Beyoncé, Taylor Swift, Lady Gaga, and Adele in one evening. It was AMAZING. But I was also tired, hungry, and in dire need of a shower. It was sort of like a musical Hunger Games, and somehow I had survived. AND YES, I GOT MY FIRE INSTAGRAM.