The 2011 Shorty Awards: We Came, We Drank, We Tweeted


Last night, @NickGreene and I attended the Shorty Awards, the official awards ceremony for Twitter and social media, a/k/a, “the Oscars of Twitter” and all that that implies. Here is our story.

Jen: HEY, so, the Shorty Awards was surprisingly enjoyable last night, don’t you think?
Nicholas: It was. Last night was the most fun I’ve had this year at an awards show dedicated to microblogging. Who won? Did we?

Jen: We were sadly NOT EVEN NOMINATED. But that’s because we fly under the radar, like geese in a snowstorm. The Shorty Awards, for those who don’t know, are awards for people on Twitter.
Nicholas: At first I labeled it “A who’s who of who cares.” But when I got to know the people there, I started to care!
Jen: In the beginning, I was concerned. We arrived at the Times Building only to be ushered into a VIP room that was really just an extremely small part of the lobby, cordoned off to contain many sweaty people wearing glasses and jockeying for bar space.
Nicholas: Floating in this sea of bespectacled techies was a real-life astronaut, Douglas Wheelock. They say, “Don’t meet your heroes,” so I stayed close to the bar away from Colonel Wheelock. He was there because he tweeted from space, I think. Big deal, I tweet from the toilet routinely.

Jen: I also heard that you saw Jim Gaffigan. I stayed away from him, for aspiring Hot Pockets spokesmodel reasons.
Nicholas: I think it was Jim Gaffigan. One of the perils of the Shorty Awards is that EVERYBODY looks like Jim Gaffigan.

Whenever someone around us took out their phone, I found myself wondering, “Are they tweeting?!” Then I would punch myself in the brain for actually becoming excited by that prospect.
Jen: So what you’re saying is, this taught you to love to tweet? Tell us more.
Nicholas: Not at all. Although I think that in three years, the Shorty Awards will overshadow both the Academy Awards and the Nobel Prize ceremony. Do you think they have multiple open bars in Oslo?
Jen: I can’t imagine if there were multiple open bars at the Times Building (and, oh, were there!) that there would not be multiple open bars in Oslo.

How long were we at that open bar?
Nicholas: Which one? (There were multiple.)
Jen: I recall it took us a while to get our mingling on, as I felt underdressed (many had pulled out their very best attire for the event, and I was wearing jeans!). Eventually, we spoke to some lovely people from Showtime about their upcoming new series about gigolos. It sounds charming! But at the end of the VIP open bar, we had a difficult decision to make.
Nicholas: Would we enter the “VIP” auditorium, take a seat, and watch the awards…OR we would we go to the basement, where another bar was set up, and watch the awards being streamed live on a projection screen?
Jen: Being who we are, we chose B. Recall that near brush with fame in which our shadows were obstructing the projector? I’ll never forget that.
Nicholas: Yes, it is something I will tell my grandkids’ lawyers. Although we could barely hear the ceremony, we took away a couple things. Host Aasif Mandvi did a very good job. Jerry Stiller and Anne Meara were hilarious (she called everybody pedophiles). And finally, @Threadless won like 30 awards.

Jen: Best quote to Anne Meara and Jerry Stiller for “Twitter is nice, we are not spitting in the face of Twitter.”
Nicholas: I think that inspired us to stop spitting in the face of Twitter and enjoy ourselves.
Jen: Second best quote to the guy in the Bacon Strips T-shirt (@EpicMealTime) for breaking his trophy with his bare hands (unclear if this was accidental) and shouting…what did he shout?
Nicholas: “We’ve changed the game!”
Jen: You know, he really had. I mean, seriously, I’m looking at this Award List. The benefits of the open bar were that it was open. The downside was we sort of missed Neil Patrick Harris, as both actor and character. And Conan got a Lifetime Achievement Award!

There was also sherry. Your Mr. Wheelock was up for Foursquare Mayor of the year, by the way. Only to be beaten by someone who stays on the ground for his day job (Congrats, @Baratunde).
Nicholas: Yes. And to return to the sherry, the event was sponsored by Macallan, which disgusts me. An awards show held by a company that awards people for using their product should not be sullied by corporate sponsorship.
Jen: Yet, it must be said that the booze brought people together. Many people were very friendly, and told us how much they enjoyed the event, even if they were just hanging out in a dark room in the basement of the Times Building drinking excessively, which is really where we find ourselves most good nights.
Nicholas: And I’d say I got a 70 percent positive reaction for the joke I told every person who would talk to me: “I’ve never been in the New York Times building. Which one of these walls is the pay wall?”
Nicholas: We met a lot of people with tech startups. One guy invented an app for the iPhone that told you where to get off the subway. Another had a super-secret dating site that he was about to launch.
Jen: I need to get in touch with him! Who else did we see down in that dungeon? Oh yes, @laughingsquid was there, and those guys who worked for the sherry company, and @fimoculous, and @ADRjeffries, and @TheBlackoutBlog…I am so namedropping, but that’s what Twitter’s about. No?
Nicholas: It is 100%.
Jen: Kiefer Sutherland looked very good presenting via that projector. But I was sad not to be able to talk to him about the impact Flatliners had on my early career.

Nicholas: I was asking people what their Twitter handle was just to be polite. Kiefer had to be the biggest name there, right? And I’m sure you were happy to see that there were (from what I could tell) no Charlie Sheen references.
Jen: None! Blessings come in many sizes. Another high moment was ushering that young rap artist away from his handlers.
Yes, @ChrisWebby, had just come from a strip club. Who leaves a strip club to go to the Shorty Awards?
Jen: Chris Webby. He’s that kind of guy. Too bad his handlers grabbed him back before we could corrupt him. Anything else notable happen, aside from my fight with a cab driver on the way home?
Nicholas: So many interesting people, definitely more than 140 “Characters” at the Shorty Awards. HAHA. HAHA. SO FUNNY. Tweet that, please.
Jen: I would go back and do it all over again, it was THAT FUN. (Also: open bar.) And everyone downstairs seemed to be pleased with their lot in life.
Nicholas: Yes. But that’s just because the only people who would be impressed by the Shorty Awards were at the Shorty Awards. Us included@!
Jen: You know you had gum on your shoe the whole night, right?
Nicholas: FUCK!

Congrats all. For a full list of Shorty Award winners, check here. Justin Bieber lost. That’s enough for us.