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Night 2: Apple's Macworld party

By Michael Gowan

I had this really weird sensation last night--I'm sitting on a stylized plastic animal while the world is spinning around me. Then I'm falling, then I'm rising. Over and over again ...

No, wait. The world's not spinning. I'm at Apple's party, riding a carousel surrounded by several others too old to be riding on plastic horsies. And for some reason, I keep yelling, "Whoo-hoo!"

I've got to hand it to Apple. Their Macworld Expo party last night was the biggest freaking party I've ever seen in my life. Held in the Yerba Buena Gardens above the Moscone Convention center, this thing sprawled through five different locations (all with cute names to help you from getting lost):

Lucy & Desi: the entrance room, filled with food and drinks, and a salsa band. They even had salsa lessons for those without any formal training or rhythm.

Gershwin: a smaller tent area with a grand piano, more food, and more drinks.

John & Yoko: several rock-and-roll cover bands kept the crowd moving so they wouldn't actually realize they were standing on ice covered with carpet. More food, more drinks. I kept waiting for a hockey game to break out, but it never did.

Miles Davis: cool jazz sounds, food, drinks.

Zeum: a new interactive children's museum, an assortment of activities awaited those that made it to the end of the building. Participants could create clay-animations, play with puppets, or make a mock television broadcast. Think of it--tipsy Mac users getting creative. Some of the creations were rather frightening. Of course, food and drink was abundant.

And of course, that carousel I had so much fun on, right outside the Zeum. You could easily spend an hour just walking from one end of the party to the other. Many people didn't even get to the Miles Davis or Zeum parts.

The downside of a get-together of that proportion would be it's really hard to find people you know. My plans to meet other Macworld editors there didn't exactly work out. When I did see one among the hundreds of attendees, I'd leech on and refuse to let them out of my sight. The most common thing I heard was, "I can't believe how few people I know here."

As with any large party, people-watching always rank high on the amusement list. iCEO Jobs made the rounds, although many were too timid to try to talk with him. I'm not sure about this, but the waitstaff seemed to be dressed in a stylized imitation of Steve: black turtlenecks all the way around. Even with lessons, some people should not salsa dance. And a member of the Macworld fashion police I brought wished to advise the guy in the all-white linen suit that it is way after Labor Day, buddy. I know this is San Francisco, but the line has to be drawn somewhere.

Photos from the Apple party

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