Last week I organized a ladies’ night out with coworkers for tonight. Today I didn’t feel like going but I’m so glad I did. Not only did I have an amazing time, but we killed at trivia! And we won $100! This week has been so money, baby.
I wound up getting an offer for the Macklemore tickets for my full asking price. The buyer? A local bar and strip club owner who bought the tickets for a promoter up from the Lower-48.
My hock also wound up in the local newspaper, Anchorage Daily (With a little shout out for The Urban Alaskan). Check it out: Perfect timing for Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’ Anchorage show
I’m facing an interesting choice: Do I sell my concert tickets for an exorbitant price? Or do I go with my original plan and my $30 tickets and go to the show?
Seattle-based rapper Macklemore and his co-artist Ryan Lewis of “Thrift Shop” YouTube fame are coming to Anchorage on Friday. Yeah, I’m a big fan of “Thrift Shop.” I’m also pretty over it. I’m not a big music fan in general, but Macklemore and Lewis’s album “The Heist” is damn good. The lyrics are generally positive and very personal. Wanna feel moved? Listen to and watch “Same Love.” Seriously.
I had no intentions of getting rid of my tickets. I had originally bought them for myself and a guy I really liked (who had actually introduced me to “Thrift Shop”), but since he never gave me a straight answer whether or not he wanted to go with me after I told him I’d found a legit relationship, I invited my friend Kat. Kat is probably one of my comedic soul mates, an Alaskan born and bred who moved to the big city (Chicago for her, NYC for me) and came home after a few years (she reluctantly, me willingly). Whenever we get together we obsess over our cats, drink mimosas late into the night, smoke hookah with fruity tobacco, and watch stupid YouTube videos streamed on my AppleTV. “Thrift Shop” is one of our solid go-tos. In the car, we blast it. At home, we dance with the vigor of Sarah Jessica Park and Helen Hunt in “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun.”
I have a lot of respect for Macklemore and Lewis. Not many artists these days, especially ones so successful, let alone home grown, will encourage their fans to download their album for free on thepiratebay.org, one of the recording industry’s (not to mention the FCC and Hollywood’s) biggest online nightmares.
That being said, I can’t help but wonder what Macklemore would think about his fans selling his tickets for profit. I feel like he’d be okay with it, especially when people like me need the money. Then again, maybe I’m justifying my profit.
Back in 2010 I scored Madison Square Garden employee-rate tickets to Lady Gaga’s Monster Ball at the Garden. I’d scored tickets to her show at Radio City Music Hall a year or so before that under the same situation for $70 a piece, so I didn’t expect the Garden tickets to come in at $200 a pop. Ah hell nah. I was hardly making Spanish Harlem rent. I was drowning in Manhattan-induced credit card debt. I had to get rid of those tickets and get that $400 charge off my AmEx. I went to StubHub.com, the veritable epicenter of ticket scalpers and opportunists. People were selling tickets worse than mine (I had amazing seats) for well over $1k each. I posted mine for $900. (That’s just basic business economics, isn’t it?) I wasn’t sure the tickets were going to sell. Oh, but someone wanted them. I brought home a cool $1600 after StubHub took its cut, paying off a credit card and that month’s Manhattan rent. And who bought them? Another ticket resale website. I wish I knew how much they turned around and sold those seats for.
Imagine my shock when I found out last night, from a friend who was trying to get last-minute tickets to join in the Macklemore Fun, that Anchorage ticket holders were selling their precious admission notes for $200 a pop. Well, I thought, I have a lot of bills. My truck is in the shop, gas ain’t cheap, and my Manhattan Debt still hangs over my head… Would it hurt to post them for sale just to see what kind of interest there was? No way, I realized. Though the $30 tickets are a far cry from the $200 Gaga admission, the fact that people seem to be willing to pay more for them is telling. My entrepreneurial eyebrow raised.
But the eternal conundrum still exists: Does this starving artist attend the concert and gain another cool experience to write about? Or does she take the money and run? (Granted, I’d be running to a bar to buy Kat and myself Friday night mimosas, but I’d also be putting the substantial leftovers toward that aforementioned debt).
I’ve gotten a few offers for the tickets. The question is: Will I accept one of them?
Why is selling tickets above face value illegal or wrong? The tickets have already been purchased for face value, which means the artists and the venue and the stakeholders are getting what they projected (right?). I bought my tickets expecting to go but I could also use a couple extra bucks to buy gas. Whats wrong with being an opportunist? I got my tickets the day they went on sale. It’s one thing to buy tickets just to resell them with no intention of going, I suppose. But then, isn’t that just the American entrepreneurial spirit? The only people getting screwed are the ones who didn’t get their tickets early enough. Bum deal for them, especially for hardcore fans. I was pissed when I couldn’t get Lady Gaga tickets in NYC when they went on sale (but I still found a way to score seats both times). I’d like to know how long it took Macklemore’s Anchorage show to sell out.
A few friends have said, “this sounds like a good way to make money.” I think tens of thousands of people all over the country have discovered that as well. There have to be professional scalpers out there. How else would concert tickets sell out within seconds of going on sale? C’mon. It’s like the college kid who sells his Ritalin for ten bucks a pop during mid-terms and finals. They’re both illegal. They both make a wild profit.
Whatever. Macklemore says “Make the money, don’t let the money make you.” I think he’d understand. Kitty needs litter, Lorrie needs tofu, and Kat needs mimosas.
I think everyone is inherently good. For the most part. It’s circumstances and experiences that make people seem bad. Excepting the clinically mentally disturbed, which is an entirely other topic–I mean, we’re not going to talk about the Timothy McVeighs and the Adam Lanzas of the world here, most people, to me, are decent by nature.
There are so many synonyms for a “bad person.” Evil. Cruel. Selfish. Vindictive. What have you. In all honesty, I was a little bit of a bully in high school. Not in that I went out of my way to be cruel to people, and I certainly didn’t torture people, but I did my fair share of purposely belittling popular underclassmen and just straight-up being mean to my peers. I had no time for their pettiness and frivolity, or so I felt. The funny thing is, it was just a defense mechanism. I was mean because I was defending myself, and I was defending myself in anticipation of an imagined attack that was not only never realized, it was never even probable.
I spent a lot of years of my young life being angry: at pretty much everything. I later learned that, at my first high school, a few guys referred to me as “hot but scary.” The anger and the put-on toughness, though, wasn’t real. “I’m not gonna let some stupid boy take advantage of me just so he can tell all his buddies and laugh at me” And “I already know that girl won’t like me so I’ll just be mean.” These, of course, were self-fulfilling prophecies, because being mean to the girl made her not like me, and being mean to the boy made him tell all his buddies that I was, well, mean.
So where did this self-imposed need to so vehemently defend myself come from? That’s not exactly clear and the goal of this post is not to examine why. The fact of the matter is that “mean and angry” is not representative of my authentic self. Just the way some people acting overly sweet is not necessarily his or her authentic self, and not just because we are such multifaceted creatures.
Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of people out there who are genuinely kind and there are plenty of people out there who are truly mean. But I find its best to keep in mind that as people move through life, they change. Not to mention that we’re all different to some extent in various scenarious.
How do you act at work vs. at home vs. with certain groups of friends vs. with your family? You’d be hard-pressed to try to convince me that you’re the same in all of those situations.
I can tell you this:
- At home alone, I’m a quiet, lazy person who hits “snooze” on my alarm clock for two hours in the morning, laughs at my own farts, and tends to indulge in 3 glasses of wine in the evenings when I should have stopped at 1-1/2.
- With my college friends, I’m a loud, obnoxious person prone to making scenes and saying inappropriate things that really only appeal to 12-year-old boys.
- At work I’m pretty quiet until the afternoons, when I’ve been at my desk for far too long, and I start chatting about absolutely nothing important with anyone who will listen (and sometimes I just chatter at no one and hope someone will respond). I also often burst into song.
- When I’m with my parents, I vascillate, sometimes needy, sometimes emotional, and oftentimes either annoyingly hyper or puzzlingly quiet.
- With my boyfriend Jonathan I can go from snuggly to sarcastic in an instant.
Are any of those things my truly authentic self? Yes. They are all parts of my authentic self. They will never all come out in one setting. That just seems impossible.
People are complex.
I can’t decide if that’s a mouthful or an oversimplification.
Back to my original point: I think people are inherently good. I think what makes us view someone as “bad” is our inability (or perhaps unwillingness) to look beneath the surface, so to speak. I know a woman who seems like the most selfish person in the world to me. She wittingly “forgets” to pay her portion of a dining bill, to return a favor, to ask before she eats someone’s food in a social setting (even a stranger’s), or to even say “thank you” for getting a ride or for having her butt covered when she doesn’t have enough money. Is this woman a bad person? Of course not. She’s just selfish and I think she’s generally unaware that her actions grate on people.
Everyone knows people like this. They’re annoying as hell. And the only way to deal with them is to just avoid them at all costs. Seriously. Do you have any other suggestions? I literally blocked this woman on Facebook because she was “liking” my crap through mutual FB friends. In real life, I avoid her at all costs. And when I have to be around her–because we share so many friends and acquaintances–I try my best to ignore her and to bite my tongue, to not revert to a mean high school girl, to try to remind myself that this woman is just…oblivious to other people’s feelings.
So trying to bite my tongue and be nice when I really don’t want to be: is that a portrayal of my authentic self? Strangely, it is. Because who I really am doesn’t want to be mean, but still has that springboard reaction to defend myself against people who might hurt me, be it my feelings or, in this case, a woman who gloms onto the next person who shows her sympathy or kindness, and then takes advantage of that kindness. Oh yes, I’m defensive alright. But I could work on being a little more kind with this particular woman. Maybe even sympathetic.
People are complex. And if I keep going on this topic I might just drive myself nuts.
Jonathan and I came up to Fairbanks this weekend to see the ice festival. He’s from Virginia and has never been up here, but said he’s always had a small obsession with Fairbanks ever since he read Into the Wild by Krakauer. I warned him that Fairbanks is a dump–quite honestly, it really is. But there’s something about it. It’s my hometown. I grew up here. After 13 years of being gone, living in Anchorage and then Virginia and then New York City and back to Anchorage, it’s funny to come back and to see how much has changed and how much hasn’t. I have been up here three times since moving back to Anchorage in 2011 and all three times it’s been winter and freaking cold. The first time, Thanksgiving 2011, it was in the -20s (F). The second time, New Year’s Eve 2011/2012, it was in the -40s (F). This weekend it’s considerably warmer–this morning I think it is 4 F, at least according to the temperature gauge in the truck.
There isn’t a lot to do in Fairbanks, but at the same time there are some fun things. Yesterday Jonathan and I headed up to Chena Hot Springs for lunch, a dip in the Hot Springs, and an overpriced tour of the year-round ice museum and a drink at the ice bar. Afterward we came back into town for our stay at the SpringHill Suites downtown, where I’ve always wanted to stay only because my mom has this amazing piece of architectural glass in the lobby. Every time I come here I point out to anyone who will listen that “my mom made this,” like a little kid. I’m always so proud of my mom.
We had dinner last night at Lavelle’s Bistro here in the hotel. It’s a pretty decent place, especially for Fairbanks, a town not exactly known for elegant cuisine. The first night we stayed at Pike’s Waterfront Lodge, and I was really impressed. My family and I used to visit Pike’s Landing, the restaurant, when I was a kid (I swear the bartendress there has worked there since I was a kid!). The hotel is new, and I think I’d stay there every time I came to Fairbanks.
But now it’s time to hit the road back to Anchorage. Jonathan and I are going to (finally) go to the ice festival — pics of that to come, maybe tomorrow. There are also dog sled races happening outside on the street. God, I love Alaska!
“I don’t want to be in a relationship right now.”
Oh? Okay then. I didn’t know we were even going to talk about that.
When two humans spend time together on a recurring basis, doesn’t that constitute a relationship? Let’s ask Merriam-Webster…
The romantic relationship isn’t mentioned until the very end.
I started to think about how every guy I’ve dated for the last year and a half have given me the “I don’t want a relationship right now.” Well, guess what buddy? According to the dictionary, you’re in one. We just aren’t in a committed, monogamous one. I’m not your girlfriend. I’m just looking to spend some time, to see if I like you enough to even take into consideration that you might be boyfriend material. I’m not asking you to wife me on the third date, okay?
It’s not the definition of relationship that I’ve been thinking about. I’ve been thinking about how two people decide that they are in a committed, monogamous [romantic] relationship. Having only been in one epically serious relationship in my life, I don’t have much experience in the “what are we?” conversation department. So this morning I was in the shower (where I do a lot of my deepest thinking) and asked myself why I would want to label someone “my boyfriend” before I’m in love with him?
I date a lot. I like dating. It can be exhausting, but it’s also exhilarating when you actually like someone. I think continuing to “just date” is important even after you’ve decided you like someone because it gives you plenty of time to decide whether or not you want to attach yourself to that person. It seems like a lot of people jump into these “relationships” before they even get through the dating phase. Here’s how my process works:
I used to think that the label goes on when two people decide to be monogamous. But I’ve been thinking about it a lot over the last six months or so, and I’ve come to the conclusion that, for me at least, I don’t think I want to slap the BF label on it until I’m in love.
It seems like so many people label their relationship before they even really get to know each other. To me, that’s what dating is for. Who are these people who ask for the “relationship” after two or three weeks? That would freak me out. I’ve heard stories from guy friends who have experienced this: “Um, so, we’ve been dating for two weeks. Am I your girlfriend now?”
I guess there’s a reason I have only had one serious boyfriend. And I am totally okay with that.
Go forth and date!