If there's anything I've learned in Boston it's that you should not always take advantage of something just because it's free. I learned this lesson the first week of freshman year when I inadvertently ended up at a LGBT meeting based on the promise of free pizza. There was no pizza. The internet, however, is a treasure trove of free stuff. Just in 2009 alone I have gotten several free sandwiches from Quizno's, a $50 prepaid Visa card, a 24oz bottle of ketchup, some terrible Stride "Always Mandarin" gum and, most recently, 4 tickets to a concert at the House of Blues (note: none of these free things were obtained by clicking on a flashing banner or links contained in emails. I do not endorse attempts to sign up for free things on the internet and cannot be held liable for damage to your hard drive, credit rating or mailbox if you attempt to get free stuff after reading this blog. By continuing to read you submit to a legal agreement to abide by the Terms and Conditions of the "coming or leaving" blog. For a full copy of the Terms and Conditions please send $1.99 US via PayPal to comingorleaving [at] gmaildotcom along with your physical mailing address. Please allow 4-6 weeks for delivery. For international requests I also require an additional $5 for the purchasing of a beer on the way to the Post Office. Additionally, this beer is not for you and will not be mailed with the Terms and Conditions).
The House of Blues occasionally gives away tickets to concerts that aren't sold out through their Twitter account. I follow them since I like live music and free things that don't suck. Last week they were giving away free tickets to see some band to the first five people who replied with the locations of other House of Blues venues. A quick google search on my phone later and I was one of the lucky winners. I texted my roommate Dan to see if he'd be interested in going and got a quick response back: "fuck yea who is playing." The band was called The Bangles and neither of us had heard of them. I was pretty excited to have something fun to do after work that day. If you know of The Bangles then you already know where this story is headed.
When I got home, Dan said he had told some people at work about the concert we were going to. His boss replied, "oh wow, I used to listen to The Bangles all the time in the 80s!" Well, that wasn't what I was expecting. Obviously any show that they're giving away tickets to isn't going to be really popular or sold out but I wasn't expecting a band from 20+ years ago. So we searched YouTube to find out who The Bangles really were. This is the video we saw.
Yes, The Bangles are the 80s girl band who brought the world hits such as "Walk Like an Egyptian," "Eternal Flame" and "Manic Monday." They weren't a band I had ever planned on seeing live but we couldn't pass up this opportunity. When we got to the House of Blues I went to the box office window, handed them my ID and said, "I, uh, won tickets to see The Bangles... from Twitter. God I feel like such a dumbass." I was handed four tickets but I was only able to convince two people to come with me. While we were waiting in line to have our IDs checked I was given hope that there would at least be a young crowd there. The guy in front of us couldn't have been more than a few years older than us and was bragging to the bouncer about how he had just left court after fighting his DUI charge. He appeared to be pretty drunk.
Once we were inside the crowd was about what we had expected: the place was only about half full and most of the people were in their 30s. Since none of us were inebriated or even alive when these songs were released we couldn't enjoy it in the same manner as the other concert goers, but we stuck around to hear Manic Monday and Eternal Flame. We had hoped to hear Walk Like an Egyptian but worried that it wouldn't be played until the encore and I certainly had no desire to stay for that long. We finally left after a particularly drunk woman shouted out a request to have a song dedicated to her. The singer obliged and the woman shouted out "yeaaaah!! Girls night out!" The singer laughed and said, "well for all of us on stage it's moms night out!" I no longer follow the House of Blues on Twitter.