Tuesday, July 25, 2006

One Wild Night

A very special post today from guest columnist Jerrey McClure...

So imagine my excitement when my buddy Pat Healey calls and tells me he has an extra ticket to see Bon Jovi on Wednesday at Giants Stadium. Now this is no other concert. For those who have seen Bon Jovi in concert, they rock a hundred times harder in their home state than anywhere else. And lets just say these aren't the easiest tickets to get, despite the fact that they play two nights in a 80,000 seat stadium. Who Says You Can't Go Home!

So I make the 2-hour trek to New York to meet Pat at his work, and then we meet up with his lovely girlfriend and head over to Giants Stadium on the bus. Pat has some old high school/college friends in the parking lot getting Wild In The Streets so meet up, drink a ton of silver bullets and tell old stories of Pat to pass the time. I've known Pat for about 4-5 years now, but one thing I never knew about him is how he likes to go drink-for-drink with his girlfriend. He can't get a beer without getting her one, so he feels better about himself by the fact that they drink the same amount of beers. Now Pat's girlfriend was Born To Be His Baby and will end up with a few full beers in front of her by the end of the night because she can't keep up with him, but in his mind they had the same amount to drink. (sidebar: great story about Pat vomiting on his girlfriend at a wedding, but that's for a different day. This guy definitely Gives Love a Bad Name).

So its 7:45pm and Bon Jovi comes on at 8pm, so we start heading into to the show. Tickets in Sec 110, row 13, 2 sections from the stage, its going to be a great time. Pat's girlfriend has never been to Giants Stadium or to see Bon Jovi, so she was probably the most excited out of any of us. Pat and his boys are all from Jersey so they were excited, and I'm an events guy, you name the game or concert, and I'll Be There For You.

We walk up to the gate and I'm first in line. I give my ticket to the guy and start to walk through the turnstile as he scans it. He says "Hold on. This is the wrong date." A few beers in me, I say "Wrong gate? We're all just trying to get in the stadium." He says, "No, these tickets were for last night." At this point I look at Pat and his face is completely white like he just saw a ghost. The ticket guy points out that the tickets were for TUESDAY JULY 18, not WEDNESDAY JULY 19. Pat had asked for tickets from work for the Wednesday show. When he got them, he only checked to make sure they said Bon Jovi and checked to see what section they were in. Didn't even bother to look at the date. Now this can go a few ways, you can blame the guy who got Pat the tickets for not getting him the right day when Pat specifically asked for Wednesday. At this point that guy is Wanted Dead or Alive. You can blame us for not looking at the tickets when he gave them to us, but that was an hour before the show, so the only person you can really blame is Pat. He got the tickets a week before the concert and was staring at them and didn't even notice they were for the wrong date!!!

So we try to think about what to do. The ticket guy says to go to the box office and maybe they can exchange the tickets for tickets for that nights show. My big thing is that with this whole new scanning system, they know what tickets were scanned the night before and which ones were not. So you would think they would understand our situation and help us out...WRONG! If this were 1995, the ticket guy would have ripped the ticket stub off without looking at the date and we would have been home free. That's why technology sucks, but I digress.

Instead of being a Runaway, Pat proceeds to hit up every gate on the way to the box office to see if they will let us in, but still nothing. I guess they only have the magical ticket scanners at the gate we went to and Pat thinks we can just walk in to the show with no questions asked. He even tries to bribe the guy at the handicapped entrance with a 20 to let us in (which was probably our best chance at getting into the concert), but no luck. At this point we're both Livin' On a Prayer while trying to Keep The Faith. So he goes to the box office and a really large lady starts yelling at him for trying to exchange tickets. Pat proceeds to call the lady the "c-word" and tries to give her a lesson on the "nice way to do things." He then makes his buddy go back to the window to see if the guy who gave him the tickets at work actually left tickets for the correct night. And as his girlfriend said "Ummmm, no!"

Pat is still fuming and still white as a ghost, ready to go down in a Blaze of Glory. So at this point (after we've walked around Giants Stadium twice), Pat's girlfriend, myself and his buddy are ready to call it a night, but Pat insists he will get us into the concert. Pat starts yelling at his girlfriend telling her she gives up to easily and she needs to be more positive. They were definitely In and Out of Love on this night. So his buddy walks back 2 miles to the car to get a warm 30-pack of silver bullets, while the 3 of us walk around trying to find tickets. You know the people you always see walking out of the concert when everyone else is walking in, and someone always yells "Hey man, the concert is this way." Well we were those people. The band has taken the stage and the second song is a great rendition of "Born to Be My Baby," one of three songs I wanted to hear (Runaway and Livin On a Prayer were the others). We decide that since the concert is about 6 songs deep now we won't pay more than about $25 for a ticket. The one scalper we do find wants face value but we "politely" turn him down. I hear "Runaway" playing inside the stadium so my night is 2/3 complete. At this point, we've all had enough and hear there is a great Chili's down the street. We all decide to call it a night, beat the traffic, and head to dinner.

I never did get to hear Livin On A Prayer, but the nachos at Chili's were delicious! And as we left the hostess said, "Have A Nice Day."

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