So the Pop5 crew (minus Rama - we told him we were going to hold auditions to replace him with a new member who looks and sounds just like him) made a Kevin Smith pilgrimage this weekend to Red Bank, NJ, home of Jay and Silent Bob's Secret Stash. We all were surprised to see how gentrified the neighborhood was. For some reason, we'd pictured it in a rundown, crummy part of town, and it is actually on an upscale shopping street, with bistros, Starbucks, and Restoration Hardware. Rob said it reminded him of New Hope, only with more straight people. It kind of reminded me of that shopping plaza in Marlton. We got pictures, but I don't have them back yet. Soon, Mike and I will have digital cameras, and I won't have to wait for the film. We also visited the CD store across the street that served as exteriors and interiors in "Chasing Amy."
Since I was not interested in buying comics (although I did pick some issues of "Weird NJ"), I wandered around J&SBSS taking pictures. The light was really low, so I am hoping they come out. Anyway, the guys believe that this "outed" us as tourists. The guy at the counter asked, and we said we were from South Jersey, not so far away. He then slipped us a pre-copied piece of paper with directions to the Quickie Mart, which we had to visit also. True to form, there was a passel of fourteen-year-old boys hanging around outside. This was definitely still in the rundown part of town. So my question is, in the Clerks era, was Red Bank all built up like that, or is it a new phenomenon? And, if it is new, does it reflect the influence of Kevin-Smith-related tourism? Is there really that much Kevin-Smith-related tourism?
At several points during the day, I heard snippets of conversation that I knew I would have to post to the web site. Some of these are below:
[We are talking about the death of Chris Penn.]
Buddy: Yeah, he was forty. [Slowly and portentously pats Rob on the shoulder.]
Rob: You fucking asshole. [Tries to kill Buddy who is sitting behind him.]
[We pull into a gas station and wait ten minutes before anyone comes over to help us - Jersey is a full service gas station state. Rob and I discuss whether it is legal to pump your own gas if no one comes to help you. Finally, Rob gets out of the car to address the topic with the employees. One comes to wait on us, and more cars start to pull into the station.]
Rob: See, now they're getting more customers. I revitalized their business.
Buddy: Yeah, they saw a gay black man here, and realized it had to be the new trendy place to be.
[We are talking about why Hollywood celebrities only date other celebrities.]
Mike: Well, that's what I would do.
Rob (sarcastic): Have you ever dated someone you worked with?
Rob: And how'd that work out?
Buddy: She's sitting in the back seat.
[The guys are giving me a hard time because I don't have a big enough purse to smuggle contraband into the movie theater.]
Me: Next time I go to Target, I'll get a really huge cheap bag that can be my "movie purse."
Rob: No way, go to a thrift store. I bet you can get one for a dollar.
Me: I don't go to thrift stores.
Rob: Next time I go, I'll get you one.
Me: Make sure it's not an ugly shade of green or a rainbow color or anything.
Rob: Of course not. I'm gay, I have class.
I am leaving out a bunch of Rob-is-old jokes (Buddy promised he would stop once Rob turned 41), and the part where we all made fun of what was on everyone else's iPod.