“So this is a blogger thing, right?” asked my friend Larry between bites of chicken taco brought around by the caterers.
“Nope. Open to the public.”
“So you bought the tickets?”
“Nope. Totally free from Mastercard.”
“So you have one of those super-platinum cards.”
“Nope. Anyone with any Mastercard could have signed up.”
“How do you find out about this kind of stuff?”
“Well,follow The Deal Mommy for one…”
I don’t blame Larry for the confusion. As we were privately signed into the Museum of Arts and Design here in NYC, as we were whisked up to a private suite on the top floor, and as we were served kid-friendly finger foods at tables stocked with sketchpads and colored pencils for our private brainstorming session with cartoonists from The New Yorker I had to pinch myself, too.
Deal Kid, while enjoying the pigs in blankets, didn’t seem too enthused. I mean yes, he loves cartooning, and yes, we shared some guffaws over the The Complete Cartoons of the New Yorker, but 11 year olds are hard to impress. Especially shy ones when asked to participate in group activities. And the first activity the cartoonists led us through was a brainstorming session in which random people, places, and things were shouted out by the kids to serve as inspiration for a series of on-the-spot cartoons we would all create. Deal Kid tried to slide under the table while other kids screamed “pick me!”.
The idea, as explained by the cartoonists, is to get the juices flowing by putting things that don’t belong together in a scenario to see what madness might ensue. Items on the list ranged from Darth Vader to a soccer player at a graveyard or a carnival with lipgloss or a sled, for example. We all had fun playing around with the various options, even Deal Kid, in his own way. While we worked, the kids one by one got to visit with a cartoonist and have a custom cartoon drawn for them. Deal Kid’s features a sledding soccer player on a roller coaster.
Then we were let loose to add in our own ideas. Deal Kid sat pensively over his drawing for a good 20 minutes and came up with this:
But the best part? He wanted to show his work to The New Yorker’s staff. I can’t tell you what a big deal this is for a kid who would prefer to blend in with the wallpaper in almost any public situation. Seeing Deal Kid enthusiastically break out of his own comfort zone was SO worth the trip for me. Of course they loved it!
Now to the part you care about: How do I get on the list for such a cool free event? The best way is to sign up for the Mastercard Priceless email that gives you the heads up on events. I’ve linked to the New York one but they have a bunch of cities worldwide.
Have you attended a Priceless event? Please share your experience in the comments.