Good things come…

About 5 years ago I signed up for an email alert system that monitors the announcement of new concert dates by well known artists. The idea is that you get an email when a new date is announced so that you get a head start in booking tickets. Being the cheapskate that I am I decided to go for the free option which only allows a choice of five artists at any one time. Of the five that I originally selected I’ve so far seen four in concert. The top choice when first setting up my list, my most favourite artist, has hardly performed any dates in the last five years and it was looking less and less likely that he would since he seemed to be becoming more and more reclusive. I’ve been aching to see him live for years and years and years and was slowly beginning to accept that it might never happen unless I was prepared to spend a sizeable amount of dosh to secure a hard-to-obtain ticket for one of his rare live US appearances and fork out the extra cash for a round trip to the venue. What price the fullfilment of a long held ambition? Every week the email alerts drop into my inbox and every week unfailingly for the last five years four of my five chosen artists feature periodically. Number 1 rarely appears except in some far flung stateside one-off fundraiser I could never hope to attend. So, having seen four of my Five, I’ve lately been leaving the emails unopened, knowing that nowt much of interest would be in them. On Sunday last I decided to click on the previous Friday’s as part of my regular email clearout. It was late at night, I was half asleep, I’d had a few, I had to look twice, I had to look thrice, I stared at the screen for a full five seconds before what I was seeing actually registered in my addled brain. Stevie Wonder had announced he would be coming to Britain to play three concerts in twelve weeks time. Well. Yes. So. Right. OK. I see. Yep. No. Surely not. Can’t be right. Must be a mistake. I immediately Googlised into action and found several confirmatory news items. Somehow I’d managed to miss the TV news appearances and BBC website articles. What is wrong with me? How out of touch can I be? “Tickets on sale 9am Friday 13th June” “Stevie hasn’t toured in Europe for over ten years”. Tellmeaboutit. It probably sounds immensely sad but this week I have been more excited than Tigger on speed atop a spacehopper.

So, picture the scene, 8.59 am yesterday morning sat in front of the PC, all three UK venue websites loaded ready, all three box office phone numbers loaded on speed dial. 9am, frantic clicking action with simultaneous phoning. First phoneline playing ‘out of order’ message [imagining a million people all trying to phone at the same time]. First website still showing ‘Tickets onsale 9am 13th June’. It is now 9.03. Websites finally show ticket availability at 9.14am, phonelines still melting. All the good seats are gone. Panic. Should I buy anything? Little Stevie says ‘No – hold out for some good seats, keep trying, the website must be broken’. Clicky click, refresh, refresh, ‘please enter this indecipherable security code to proceed with your booking’ only to be left hanging, for the fourtieth time as the ‘seat availability’ page once again fails to load. 9.48am and the Millenium Wok website tells me that all tickets are sold. Bastards – I never even got a look in. As I begin to see my dream slipping away I contemplate desperate measures. The O2 site is now listing, less than an hour after the tickets went on sale, tickets being sold by ‘fans’ for a minimum of two and a half times the face value up to nearly ten times the face value for those good seats that seemingly disappeared at 9.01am [or were never available to mere mortals in the first place]. I find myself contemplating mortgaging my ass to buy these when I am saved from myself with my on-hold call to another venue finally being answered after 13 minutes. The lady sounds like she’s taken a chill pill and is only too delighted to sell me proper priced seats in decent locations with a cheery chat as she takes my details. I repress my inner squeal of glee when I realise that I will be going to see my idol at his first concert on UK soil since before I was a sperm. I will be there on the first night. Yes, finally it is going to happen.
“Over dreams, I have picked out a perfect come true”

Leave a Reply