Monthly Archives: May 2008
I’d bet everything I have that my mother was never, ever expecting to hear those words come out of her daughter’s mouth again, nearly 18 years after the first time she heard them. And yet, Saturday morning at exactly 10:05 AM, that’s the phone call she received.
Those of you that have talked to me in the past few weeks know that the New Kids on the Block, aka best boy band EVER, are staging a comeback, complete with reunion tour. You also know that each and every time this is mentioned, (which is quite a lot, given my propensity to bring it up,) I revert to my 13 year old self, complete with glasses, braces, and the bad perm. I am SO, SO excited, and I’m making no apologies for it. I don’t ask for much, and this whole scenario makes me very, very happy. I’m dreaming my pre-adolescent dreams about Donnie Wahlberg again, and I’m okay with the fact that this just might make me kind of a sad person.
So since the tour information was announced, frantic phone calls have been going between myself and my sister, whose friend has some sort of deal with the devil and is getting really good seats. She can only get six, so my sister is going with her friends, and myself and my friends Autumn, Kelly, and Carrie (who attended my first concert with me) are going to sit together. This was all decided through insanely detailed phone calls and mounting hysteria.
I am in charge of tickets. Now, you know where this is going, right? I shouldn’t be in charge of things. I tend to make silly mistakes. I also tend to have bad luck, such as the computer suddenly shutting down five minutes before my deadline, the cats chewing through the cords at inopportune times, and not having enough money in my debit account. So tickets go on sale Saturday morning, 10 AM sharp. There was a presale if you had an American Express card (and btw, what kind of 30 year old doesn’t know ANYONE with an AmEx card, including her parents?) but since we didn’t, I’m stuck waiting with the rest of the almost 30 somethings that don’t have enough credit to get an AmEx.
For three nights in the week prior to the ticket sales, I have the same recurring nightmare that I am exactly seven dollars short when the price comes up and my sister won’t answer her phone to give me money. (Yes, we did have that plan, just in case.) Never mind that there was going to be close to four hundred dollars more than I needed, even if we got the most expensive tickets, so that was an impossiblity, but there it was anyway, waking me up in a cold sweat.
Saturday morning, Tony has to work (thank God, so no one had to actually witness my hysteria) and I get up and on the computer at 8:30, just in case it was 10 Eastern time, instead of 10 Central, even though it clearly stated 10 Central. I’m not taking any chances. I’m talking to my mama on the phone, and this is how we end our conversation.
Her. “Well, just in case, I would take the first seats you get, even if they’re not great. I made that mistake once and they ended up selling out.”
Me. “Duh. Of course that’s what I’m going to do. I’m not taking any chances, especially since I’m getting four.” What does she think I am, stupid?
So I’m sitting at the computer at 9:58 with Ticketmaster up and keep refreshing the screen, and it’s still saying tickets not available. At 9:59, the screen comes up to purchase tickets. Heart pounding, (and I’m not exaggerating) I put in four and wait to see what comes up, just praying that something that it isn’t something completely behind the stage. YAY!! Got through, four tickets, all the way in the back. They’re not great, and they’re the highest price range, but whatever. If that’s all they have, I’m taking them.
This is where the stupid part of my brain, the one that makes me do Jaeger bombs and eat two pounds of mashed potatoes for breakfast, the one that my mother knows exists and was worried about, hijacks my fingers and says, no, those are awful seats! And hits the BACK button, thus losing me my seats.
Okay, I think, even though my heart has sped up considerably, it’s only 10:01, just go back in. Four tickets. Wait, searching, NOOOOOOOOO!!!!! We’re sorry, tickets are unavailable for purchase at this time. Sold out!! In less than a minute!! Sold out!!! GAH!!
Now I’m saying out loud to the cats, looking on in what I deemed to be interest, this can’t be happening. This is NOT HAPPENING. I did not just lose my tickets to the only concert I have wanted to go to in 10 years because I’m an idiot. Frantically, I keep trying to go back in. My progress is slowed by those stupid little blurry fucking words that you have to type in to keep hackers out. I can’t read them due to my hysteria-induced swimming vision and have to keep asking for another one.
***Side note. What the hell are those about? I know they’re to potentially stop hackers or whatever, but could they possibly have them make some sort of sense? Cause RKLIDYHONG is hard enough to type out without being blurry and smushed together. *****
Nothing. I do this about four times and am getting NOTHING!! Panic. Call Autumn, who is not sufficiently alarmed at the situation. She seems to think that they’ll probably add another show, no big deal. (I talked to her later and she said she was actually quite worried about me. Thanks, button Can’t call Kelly, she just had an almost 7 lb child taken from her person three days ago, this is probably not top on her priorities. CARLY! She is horrified, even though she was still in bed. Right after she called me an idiot for losing the first tickets (fair enough) she starts making contingency plans and calling her friend with the in to see if he can get me a ticket.
I am ashamed to say, I am honestly near tears at this point, as much for not having tickets as mad at myself for being a moron, and I call my mommy.
“Mama!! They’re sold out and it’s only 10:15 and I can’t believe it and I screwed it up and what am I going to do??” She’s at the store, will call back. I start getting unreasonably angry with the New Kids on the Block. “What the fuck? They haven’t had a song in 15 freakin years! How dare they sell out so quick? Jerks. Why are they playing Allstate, anyway? It holds like ten people. Why not at the World Music Theater/Tweeter Center/Midwest Bank Amphitheater/insert your own corporate name here?” Cats look on in interest. Or perhaps disdain, if they can decipher what I’m upset about.
That stops quickly, because, really, I can’t blame the best band ever for being so popular. There are probably thousands of girls like me all over the place, most of them with toddlers and real jobs instead of cats, who want to go as bad as I do. Panic. Light cigarette in bedroom (explicitly forbidden) in my distress and keep trying. Nothing. Get two tickets, debate the merits of this with Autumn, wait too long, and lose the tickets. Have I learned nothing?
Panic some more. Cry a little. Light another cigarette, although this time I remember to open the window. Mama calls. “Okay, I’m going on the computer, do you want me to try? If I get through I’ll call you.” Love Mama. Feel like I am 12 again, desperately pushing the redial button with Carrie, trying to get tickets to the 1990 show, dramatically announcing that I HAVE to go this concert or life is not worth living.
Talk to Carly, all the while trying to figure out those stupid little codes and trying, unsuccessfully, to get another four tickets. She also recognizes the severity of the situation and tries to come up with alternatives. Phone beeps, it’s Autumn, wanting to know if I’ve made progress. NO. Phone beeps again, it’s Mama.
“Okay, I just started putting in two tickets and I have two right behind the stage, what’s your credit card number?” She sounds almost as frantic as myself. I wonder how many other 30 year old females are having the hysteria I am and whether they had to involve their mothers. Almost cry with joy, start to give it to her, when the screen pops up — “Purchase these four tickets?”
EUREKA!! “Never mind, Mama, I got some! Thanks, bye!” And without looking, do the first intelligent thing I’ve done all day, which is hit YES. I am now the proud recipient of four New Kids on the Block tickets in section 205, row nosebleed, which are situated at a direct diagonal angle behind the stage, which probably means we will be able to see nothing. But whatever!! I’m going!! Woo-hoo!!
Am now spending all of my time stalking radio stations in order to win better seats where I may have a chance of actually seeing the tops of their heads or at least make out the form of bodies as opposed to the back of a giant screen, which is probably what I’ll be seeing. The friends that I’m going with have been nice enough not to be upset with me for being a moron, either because they love me or they don’t care that much.
Tony, on the other hand? “I figured you would screw it up. I just thought you’d be in the bathroom, not do something stupid like not take the tickets that you had.” While I do have the unfortunate luck of being in the bathroom for many important occasions (touchdowns at Bears games, home runs at Cubs games, first dances at weddings and such) I still say that was mean. Whatever. Just for that, he’s been listening to all New Kids, all the time, since then.
So as happy as I am for even getting tickets at all, I’m telling you right now, if my little sister and her friends up with tenth row and end up on the stage cause they’re all gorgeous, my inner bad perm pre-teen is going to completely lose her shit and you will probably hear about me on the news.
So, I’m taking an idea from my friend Autumn’s blog — not long ago, she listed things that make no sense to her. These are things that are keeping me up at night.
1. There is a fucking WOLF that is hanging around by my apartment. Please note that I live directly under (remember the billboards) the 294 expressway and nowhere near any sort of wildlife preserve. Where did it come from? How did it cross the expressway when I can hardly pull out of my driveway without getting killed?
2. I tried to go shopping today for my sister’s birthday party tomorrow. Why are we bringing back: stirrup pants (worn with open toed heels on the size negative 7 mannequin) spandex tights with lace on the bottom (perhaps it will take away from the fact that I’m wearing SPANDEX) and giant shirts pulled to the side? I could not pull it off as a thirteen year old with braces, glasses, bad skin, and an incredibly bad perm who played the tuba (oh, yes. My awkward stage lasted about six years, according to my sister, who never went through one) and there is NO WAY my almost 30 year old fat ass (albeit with clear skin and contact lenses) can pull it off now.
3. Also on the shopping front, I do not believe, in my heart of hearts, that plaid, striped, pink and green shorts look that good on anyone. FYI, if you’re a pear shape (as I am, albeit an overgrown one) shorts that stop right above your knees, thus cutting you just below the widest part of your body, make you look like a Weeble Wobble. And you know me. I will fall down.
4. My Palestinian neighbor who has taken to standing on his balcony and watching me read my book, trying to relax on my patio, under the guise of his 3 1/2 year old son wanting to say hi. There is something very disconcerting about this.
5. My drunk neighbor who slept through her kids coming home from school AGAIN, thus forcing her five year old to stand in the parking lot, looking in my bedroom window and holding onto the bars on the windows (oh yes, my neighborhood is that awesome) while I was dusting in there and screaming my name so loud I almost had to call 911.
6. How it can possibly take 17 minutes to procure me a large diet coke from Burger King.
7. How two people who live hand to mouth in an apartment with bars on the windows under the expressway can possibly owe the IRS almost five hundred dollars.
8. Why I thought I was Wonder Woman and insisted that I was fine breaking up my parent’s old wood floor with some sort of shovel type tool, resulting in a trip to the ER, then a trip to the Urgent Care center cause the ER sucks, and a strained bicep muscle, leaving my left arm useless for three days. Please note here that I was told, “We just need you to help us move some things,” which was apparently code for, ”Removing the entire downstairs of our house.” And Bob? If you’re reading this? Now that you’re going to be in the family, you are absolutely involved in all of these projects; I don’t care if Carly has to work
On the bright side, I am REALLY GOOD at tearing shit up.
On a happy note, I have taken to wearing my iPod at Wal-Mart and have thus avoided any scary big ladies and fights.
File this one in the “This shit only happens to the two of you” box, folks. Really. I challenge you to find someone else this situation has happened upon. The scene: My apartment, Saturday night (or early Sunday morning, I think it was about 2:00 AM) The participants: Myself, Tony, and Megan. Don’t worry that you don’t know who Megan is. We didn’t either. So on Saturday night/Sunday morning, me and Tony find ourselves at home alone with the cats, having a few beers, listening to music and such. This is not because we have no friends, but rather our closest friends either a) are (were! Jack Joseph, born May 7, 2008) with child, won’t come to our house because they’d rather we come to theirs (totally understandable, they have a five story house and we have a one bedroom apartment, but really? This wouldn’t have happened there,) or moved to freaking ARIZONA. I digress.
So we’re having a fine time. I go out to the patio to have a smoke, and as I’m standing there, I see someone stumbling toward me, who then promptly falls in my lawn. Ha! Is there anything funnier than people falling down? Cause I haven’t seen it. So I’m trying not to laugh and stare while simultaneously trying to get Tony’s attention to laugh at the drunk. Then I realize she isn’t getting up. So I step over the railing, go over, and seeing it’s a female, say, “Hey, honey, are you okay?” See? I’m nice. Then she starts sobbing. This girl is absolutely shit-canned drunk. By now, Tony comes outside to see the commotion and starts to help her up, which she takes as an invitation to wrap herself around him and asks if she can come in. So us, being charitable and not willing to leave a drunk girl on the street by herself, take her in the apartment and offer to call a cab. Now it begins. Starts sobbing about how she left her boyfriend at a party cause he was “being SO MEAN to me. I just don’t understand. It’s just so hard when you love somebody so much! It hurts! I do everything for him! How could he be so MEAN?” followed by more hysterical sobbing. We’re nodding along, trying to act like we’re really interested in this, when it hits me. “Megan, how old are you?” Sob. “Nineteen.” Hiccup. BINGO!! “And how long have you been with your boyfriend?” “Almost seven months!!” Bout of hysterical sobbing. Oh, for God’s sake. Let’s assess the situation. I now have a hysterical, drunk, nineteen-year old girl having a not-even-quarter life crisis in my apartment at 2:00 AM. Time to take control. “Okay, can we call you a cab? Or walk you somewhere close?” Cause I don’t want to call the police (which, for those of you that know us, would be like saying, ‘Hello, officer. Take us to jail for giving a minor alcohol.’ Which we didn’t, of course, but I refer you to our previous excellent luck with the police the day before my wedding.) But I also feel kind of sorry for her, and I don’t want to just send her stumbling through our crappy neighborhood by herself at this time of night. She doesn’t want a cab, says she’s just going to walk to her friend’s house on the next block (undoubtedly where she was headed before she did a face plant in my yard.) She just wants to use the bathroom to clean up. Okay. So she’s in there awhile, comes out looking like a new person. Won’t let us walk her anywhere and pretty much runs out, probably realizing that she’s in a stranger’s apartment. So, about 15 minutes later, I go to take the garbage out behind the building. I hear screaming. You guessed it. Now she’s on the street behind my apartment, yelling at the top of her lungs at some guy (assuming he’s the boyfriend.) He’s screaming at her to get in the car. So, not being sure what to do (yes, Mom, I know at that point I should have just called the police, but you can’t buy this kind of entertainment,) I walk forward a bit. She spots me. “Megan?” “Courtney!!” Comes flying into my arms like a three year old who hasn’t seen her mommy in months, or at the very least like a close friend, not some stranger she met 30 minutes ago. Crying her eyes out and holding onto me for dear life (or balance, perhaps), now the guy’s yelling at me and her. Tony comes out and now he’s yelling at him. At this point, I am going to call the cops, when Megan abruptly stops crying, wipes her eyes, and without a backward glance, runs to the passenger door of the truck and jumps in. He takes off, never to be seen again. Now, you know me. I’m worried about Megan. I’m waiting for the police sirens announcing he’s wrapped the truck around the streetlight or thrown Megan out of the car. It’s going to keep me up at night. But she’s gone, vanished in a cloud of exhaust, and we’ll just never know what happened. We do have a reminder, though. The next morning, Tony came out of the bathroom holding a hair salon-type squirt bottle full of brown liquid, saying, “What the fuck is dark brown hair GLUE and what would you be needing with it?”
Really, folks, it doesn’t get any classier than this. Yours truly was in an honest to God yelling match with a big fat woman at Wal-Mart.
I defend my actions fully. Tell me what you think. I go to Wal-Mart on a Saturday afternoon, admittedly a dumb idea in the white trash vista of Chicago Ridge — but I needed some slim-fast and the better than sex cracked pepper and olive oil triscuits that are only available at said Wal-Mart.
Every single person that lives in the surrounding three burbs from me is there. Now, I know. I should have just turned around and walked right out. Nope. I want my f-in triscuits.
So I’m walking up and down the aisles, crammed with screaming children, old people with walkers, and big fat ladies, sometimes all in the same family doing their weekly grocery shopping. Can’t find the triscuits. I know that they have them there, because I’ve seen a lone box of regular triscuits in the bread aisle, but I keep thinking I must have missed them due to the unwashed masses perusing the aisles as well.
***Side note. I finally asked for the fucking Triscuits after the fight — the clerk helpfully told me that they were in aisle eight. So there was the bread aisle, an aisle of Easter candy, two aisles of greeting cards, and then the holy cracker aisle. Excellent planning, dumbasses. ****
As I’m walking up and down the aisles, there is a big scary lady on the phone screaming at the
top of her lungs, “I’ll buy her $80 shoes if I f*in want to! It’s my goddamn money and if that’s what I want to spend it on, I will.”
Judging by her Dale Earnhardt Budweiser leather jacket and pretty black roots, apparently that WAS how she chose to spend her money.
And she’s so mad that she’s pacing, not an easy feat with THREE THOUSAND other people in the aisle, effectively blocking the aisle. Whatever. This isn’t that surprising. I continue my hunt for the triscuits.
Now I run into her again, she’s standing at the end of the aisle, now not only blocking the food aisle, but also the main aisle as she walks in anger induced circles about the shoes.
“It’s not about what they feel like — they’re nice fucking shoes and they look great and that’s what she wanted! I’ll f*in buy em if I want to!”
Here’s where it gets fun.
“And she’s gonna tell ME to shut up? She’s gonna tell ME to shut the fuck up?”
Me — trying to walk by, not even realizing until the words are out of my mouth — “somebody needs to.”
Whoops. Now she’s PISSED.
“WHAT DID YOU SAY? WHAT THE FUCK DID YOU JUST SAY?”
Me, “I said somebody needs to, you’re standing in middle of a store screaming like a maniac.” THat’s what came out. In my head, it was more like, “Please don’t hit me. Please don’t hit me. I fight like a girl.”
Here’s the kicker. “I am standing here, having a PRIVATE CONVERSATION with my friend. Who the hell are you?”
Snap! My thin thread of patience for this godforsaken place is GONE.
“NO! No, you are not. You are standing in the middle of a public place, screaming profanities at the top of your lungs! If you want to have a private conversation, I suggest you go outside!”
Can you believe it??? ME!! I yelled at someone!!! Luckily, she didn’t hit me and just called me a little bitch to her friend as she walked away. That might have been due to the guy standing right next to us going, “DAMN girl!” Other people gave me thumbs up.
Officially the coolest person in Wal-Mart, admittedly not a high distinction — but for me? Awesome.
I was still so mad when I got home, I walked directly to the fridge and cracked a beer (it was about 2:00)
Tony — “Um. How was Wal-Mart?”
Me — “I got in a FIGHT!!! Stupid bitch! And I WON!!”
Score one for the good people.