Lindsay Soll
September 10, 2007 AT 12:00 PM EDT

I’m still recovering from the mess that was the MTV VMAs last night (well, okay, a lot of that has to do with Britney kicking off the awards show on the wrong stiletto-heeled foot), but I wanted to report back to you guys on my experience on the red carpet before I head on a plane back to NYC. (I’ll admit it: Sin City has worn me out.)

The red carpet took place along a walkway through the casino inside the Palms Hotel. Across from where the press were standing were hand-picked pretty people playing poker — with fake chips — who were basically strategically placed by MTV to look like they were having way more fun than they actually were. Good thing they were provided with free drinks. Behind the fence where I was standing were tons of hotel guests, Vegas townies, stalkers, and basically anyone who wanted to catch a glimpse of Justin Timberlake on their cell phone cam as he passed through. Needless to say, the entire hotel turned into a natural disaster as more and more people crammed into the casino during the pre-show.

  • First to arrive was Nicole Scherzinger of the Pussycat Dolls, who in person, looks amazingly like she could be Kim Kardashian’s twin. Nicole was wearing a pretty interesting black Alice Temperly dress that was long in back and short in front. Not sure if it was Vegas enough for me, she almost looked like she belonged in a Cleopatra movie.
  • The boys of Panic! At The Disco were adorable. I asked two of ’em what there is to do in Vegas when you are under 21, and they said they’d hung out at the pool a lot (uh huh, and I’m sure they didn’t sneak into any clubs at all, right boys?). Brendon Urie mentioned he thought Brit Brit’s performance was going to be incredible, “The thing is, it’s Britney, so I don’t know how it couldn’t be incredible,” he said. “Everybody’s looking forward to it, whether you like her or not.” Bet he ate his words for breakfast this morning.

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  • The owner of the Palms, George Maloof, basically gotshoved into my face by a publicist. Okay, he’s not really in showbiz,but what was I to do? I, of course, asked him what it was like to hostBritney’s “comeback” performance in his hotel, and like a well-trainedmachine, he responded gleefully, “Well, I saw her in rehearsal, she wasunbelievable, period.” Wish I could ask George now what he saw in thatrehearsal that vanished by the time of the actual live performance.
  • Brody Jenner of The Hills came down the carpet with his newest sidekick, Frankie Delagado. I asked Brody who he was wearing, and he was — shocker —clueless. “I don’t know. Let me see [he looks inside his jacket]. Iwent out last night, woke up really late, like 2:30. Had a rough nightlast night. Knew it was the VMA’s, so I put this on. Oh, it’s Dior.”
  • Right around this point, Rihanna glided past all of us in a hot pink gown. Unfortunately, I never saw her alleged boyfriend, Shia LaBeouf even go down the carpet, though.
  • Next, I stopped Isaac of The Real World: Sydney ashe walked by because I couldn’t resist asking him why he ever thoughtit would be okay to wear a red, totally ’80s track suit with the words”Team Isaac” on it to an awards show. “I felt like Team Isaac — I’mtrying to get everybody on the team,” he explained. “It’s pretty muchthe coolest outfit I thought I could wear.” Next time, hon, maybe checkwith your castmates or even a mirror before you make that assertion.
  • “I used to babysit her when she was, like, 8, so I’ve known herso long, it’s weird to think that so much is riding on tonight forher,” said Carson Daly of Britney. “I hope she’s classy. Eventhe Amy Winehouse video with her singing with a toothpick at the showin England, which is all over YouTube right now, it’s like a touch ofclass… every time Christina gets up she gets a Grammy… Mary J Blige— those people, Britney needs to take a page out of their book, Ithink. That would be my advice. Try and really act like a lady. Benice, clean, straight.” Well said, Carson, well said.
  • Kanye rolled through at some point stopping when Iyelled, “Who are you wearing” to do a twirl, say absolutely nothing,then walk away.
  • Peter of Peter Bjorn and John mentioned he had gone to aVegas library (oxymoron, right?) to pick up a book on how to playpoker. He said he was going to try it out after the VMAs. And, I’mstill not sure if he was serious.
  • Like pretty much every other actor on the planet, Josh Henderson — best known for playing often-shirtless teen Austin on Desperate Housewives —is also pursuing a music career. He was quite mysterious, though, whenI asked him more about it. “Something totally crazy is going to happen,but we’re not sure yet,” he told me. Anyone have any clue what the heckhe meant by that? Or, does anyone actually care, for that matter?
  • The Hills girls almost whisked by me, but being the loyal TV Watcher of the show that I am, I stopped Whitney and Audrina to chat. Whitney seemed a little weary of all the fuss being made about them on the carpet (but, they are pretty much the stars of MTV at the moment), and she said, “It feels really strange, I don’t know if I like all of the attention.”
  • Jennifer Garner swooped by me faster than I could blink, as did Hayden Panettiere. Paris Hilton,however, took her pretty (er, ugly — did you see her hair?) timestrutting down the carpet in some leopard getup. I wish I could’vevideotaped it for you, PopWatchers, because her entrance was thatridiculous. She looked like she thought she was either on a runway oron a stage after being elected President of The United States allwaving and giving a sly smile.
  • Found out from Sean Garrett, who is one of the producerswho worked with Britney on her new-not-sure-if-it-will-ever-be-releasedalbum, that one of the tracks is called “Pull Out.” So, so, many jokesI could make here, but I am going to refrain.
  • Another producer on Brit’s upcoming album, Swizz Beatz,described the album as, “Dance music, stuff in the club,” and offeredthis piece of advice to the lady of the night: “Stay focused.”
  • When I asked Pras Michel if there will ever be a Fugeesreunion, he exclaimed, “If Lauryn Hill were to get her act together!She needs some Prozac.” Tell us how you really feel, Pras.
  • Big thank you to Chris Brown (pictured) for being honestabout which Palms suites he planned to hang out in during the VMAs: “Idon’t know, hopefully a girl will call me to her suite.” Sorry, ladiesfor not alerting you of his request sooner.
  • Right after the show began, I heard the masses behind me freak out and scream when I realized it was because Justin Timberlake had arrived — conveniently, minutes after Britney’s performance was over.

So there you have it, a look at the VMAs’ red carpet. Like mostthings in Vegas, there were definitely more lows than highs, but it wasquite an experience. What did you think of what the carpet-strutterssaid about Britney? What would you have like to ask the celebs whoattended the show? Would you agree that the VMAs should never be heldin Vegas again?

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