1. Just because it’s always balmy outside the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles does not mean that you can abandon your coat in Halifax. In April. One wee heat lamp located 10 feet away does not a warm writer make, as some coatless journalists in open-toed shoes quickly discovered. I suspect that Saskatoon, the location for next year’s awards, may suffer from similar weather patterns, so do yourself a favour and buy yourself a swishy coat (no one sees anything from the elbows down) that won’t clash with Skye Sweetnam’s Freak Lunchbox wardrobe, or with the abundance of frozen nipples in the crowd. Just don’t wear the coat out to parties the night before; it’s bad enough that some musicians reeked like The Attic and Old Milwaukee.
2. I don’t care if you work for People or a toonie tabloid, try to learn something about who you’re covering. Yes, it’s Pam! Pam! Pam! Fergie! Fergie! Fergie! Chris! Chris! Chris! But if you did your research (or read The Coast), you would know who Martha Wainwright or Kathleen Edwards is. Bonus points if you can pick out a Broken Scenester who’s not Feist.
3. Flirting works but use your powers for good. Or on Jim Cuddy.
4. Leave your cynical ’tude at home. For instance, those who thought that Michael Buble is best served dunked in a pot of melted Velveeta were surprised to discover that he is a warm, gracious man with a knack for ignoring his publicist’s pleas to step inside and win awards. If you, or your publication, can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything to Chad Kroeger.
5. Belinda Stronach—was that you who smashed the wine glass in the women’s washroom? Don’t worry, I won’t tell.
6. Middle-aged women should not scream at Kalan Porter (it may be illegal), unless it’s to beg him to eat piles of pasta. Don’t ask people who are working to take pictures of any Canadian Idols; that should be deemed illegal too.
7. This one’s for the stars in the crowd: Sincerity is hot. Kardinal Offishall, your kind words about the generousity of the Preston communities shone right through your well-cut Sean John suit.
8. If your face is covered in zits, your teeth in orthodontics and you ask juvenile questions, you have a better shot at celebrity interviews. Just ask 22 Minutes’ Gavin Crawford as alter-ego Mark Jackson. (Jackson’s red carpet interviews were almost as hilarious as when he pissed his pants during a MuchMusic VJ search.) Apparently, absent Toronto Sun journalists are also in demand by publicists.
9. Although there may be bad karma involved, enjoy those brief, intimate moments of celebrity sarcasm. For instance, if Pam Anderson is asked about her favourite hangover remedy, and she snorts “don’t drink,” then rolls her eyes, it’s completely acceptable to eye roll and snort right along with her at the stupidity of it all.
10. Dear Feist, I love that you kept it real with your hot-pink duct-taped old purse. Oh Corb Lund, the man in black, you may be partially responsible for Calgary’s newfound wealth. I tip my 10-gallon hat to you. Steve Bays, your hair is hot, hot, hot. Measha Brueggergosman, you and Jann Arden need to co-host something. Anything. Kathleen Edwards, I will make the trip to Steeltown for your local food awareness concert (as inspired by your Coast cover shoot). Come out from under the heat lamp, Martha Wainwright my dear, and we’ll share a cheap bottle of champagne. Jacob Hoggard, I’ve heard the word cock before; I’ve even said it. Colleen Hixenbaugh, no one wears tartan and plastic lobsters as well as you. Ron Sexsmith, if I had my own award show, I would knit you a giant trophy out of mohair and cook you a special gala dinner. (You can bring Colleen, but only if she wears the tartan-lobster dress.)