Thursday, January 20, 2011

She get it from her Grandma....

We got there around 10:00pm Saturday- tucked into a line about 25 people deep outside Public Assembly, a mini-warehouse turned bar/music venue in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. The bouncer nodded for my ID and asked what we were there for.

"Uh, the neighborhood watch meeting," my boyfriend* tried to keep a straight face as he responded. It was the secret code we were given in the secret email that revealed the secret location. The bouncer waived us in.

It was dark. Music was blaring. At least 200 people were gathered around an empty stage. A countdown flashed on a black screen. We had about 15 minutes left.

We were all excited. We knew what we were there for. It wasn't a neighborhood watch meeting- whatever that is. The countdown ran out to zero. The crowd- now pushing 300- roared like it was New Year's Eve.

A late twenty-something British man walked on stage in a trench coat. He told us we weren't safe. He told us the streets of Brooklyn were crawling with thieves. Then he started to unbutton his trench coat. "But you're not really here for a watch meeting." The crowd cheered. "You're here to change your life." The crowd cheered. "Do you want me to change your life?" The crowd lost it. He ripped off his coat and finally revealed what we were all waiting for.

"You're here to play Underground Rebel Bingo!"

We were.

We were holding magic markers and bingo cards. There was a bingo machine on stage. We wanted prizes.

But it wasn't your Grandma's bingo.

Two girls- one dressed in not much more than a corset, the other with a diamond-studded bra hanging out of her dress, both in neon wigs- bounced up on stage. They started to fondle the bingo balls and call out letters and numbers with rhymes too raunchy to repeat. The rules: If you win, scream bingo, fight through the crowd, launch yourself on stage and hug the announcer. If you call a false bingo you get ridiculed by the entire audience. The prizes: an iPod speaker that looks like a guitar amp and a giant panda bear suit.

Rumor has it, Underground Rebel Bingo started in a church basement in London. After it became wildly popular with the Brits, the man in the trench coat decided to ship it to Brooklyn.

A rave-like Bingo with a secret location and panda-themed prizes- my prediction is that it will catch on fast with the hipsters out here. BINGO!

*Still deciding how to introduce him/refer to the new him on the blog. But yeah, boyfriend.

NOTE: Picture stolen from the New York Times coverage of another Rebel Bingo night.


  1. I love that this reads like a newspaper featurette. J school training was worth the money then, huh? ;)

  2. you can take the nerd out of j school but you cant take the j school out of the nerd

  3. Now that you're a true Apple, it seems you're just preparing for your eventual retirement back to the land of Oranges. Make a stop in D.C. to learn the rules of shuffleboard.