If you didn't get your tickets in advance (fool), you can still purchase tickets at the door. Here's what you can look forward to, based on my previous experience in April (I scribbled notes on an old ATM receipt):
* 7:30pm: Get to the museum. Congratulate myself on my cleverness and foresight in getting there 30 minutes early.
* 7:31pm: See the line, which already runs down Independence from the museum entrance in the middle of the block, down to the corner on 7th. Stop congratulating myself.
* 7:35pm: Suffer the indignity of being gawked at tourists on Segways:
* 8pm: The line, which has stretched far down 7th, out of sight, starts moving. Advanced ticket holders start arriving and breeze past us. I hate them.
* 8:35pm: Getting through the cursory bag check, I turn around and take a picture. Then, more waiting:
After a few more minutes, we get inside the building. The security guard at the door has a clicker -- I ask him and he says the count is already at #250.
Since there are supposed to be 500 tickets at the door (and 1500 presale), I wonder how many disappointed people there are going to be. Their number do not include me, as I get mine.
At this point, I should be able to stop taking notes. But I don't.
* 10pm: Smell the first doobie of the night.
* 10:15pm: Overheard: "This is, like, the best party I have ever been to." Surmise speaker needs to get out more.
* 10:30pm: The beer starts to run out.
Here are some photos that are not of the line -- the lit plaza fountain from above (through a dirty window) and band Hooliganship:
Purple and shadows:
A faux-infrared photo -- the pink/orange light from the building was a neat effect on the trees:
You can see my full photo set (including some sculpture and many museum artwork labels) on Flickr: Hirshhorn After Hours, 4/4/08.
And I look forward to breezing past the line-waiters tonight.