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The Tickets, part III
                                                                                         6/29/2001

So we power-walked to Emerson and I looked up the list of locations. There was one at Filene's and another at HMV
Records, both at nearby Downtown Crossing, and another one at Copley Square, on the same street but in the
opposite direction. I decided to take my chances with Downtown Crossing, since there were two possibilities, and I
was pretty sure the one at Copley was exactly the same as the one at Fanueil Hall. So we walked to Downtown
Crossing, another 10 minute walk. HMV Records didn't open until 10, but fortunately, Filene's was already open. So
 into Filene's we went.

And we had a heck of a time trying to find any place where ticketmaster would be located. We figured it would be the
guest services, but we didn't know where that was. We finally found it on the third floor (I think) and we were right,
they had ticketmaster.

However, I was afraid that Filene's ticketmaster might only sell tickets to certain, tourist-related events because that's
all I saw advertized. So I asked the guy behind the counter if he sold all ticketmaster events.

"Yes. Are you here for Sting?"

I blushed in embarrassment. "No, NSync."

"NSync?" He seemed confused, so I explained.

"For their concert in Cleveland."

"Oh! I'm sorry, we only sell tickets for the New England area."

"Oh...Are all ticketmasters around here like that?"

"Yes. But if you want, you can call the ticket office. Here, I'll get you the numbers." So he very kindly wrote down the
numbers for Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati and gave it to me.

So we left and wandered over to Boston Common. By then it was 9:40, so we had to kill twenty minutes before we
could call. Jessica offered to let me use her cell phone when the time came, but after fifteen minutes of dileberation, we
decided it might be too risky. So we headed over to the pay phones outside Park Street station, and dug out our calling
cards.

When my watch said 10:00, we each dialed a number. Jessica didn't get through, but I did.

"Hi, I'd like to buy two tickets to the NSync concert in Cleveland."

"I can't sell tickets until a minute before 10."

"Yeah, but what time is it now?"

"8:58."

"What?? Do you mean 9:58?"

"Oh yeah, in your time zone." Ohio is in the same timezone as Boston, so I was obviously talking to someone NOT at
the Columbus ticketmast like I thought. "But I still can't sell tickets yet. Try again later. Good-bye."

"Aaaaah, NO!" I cried as soon as I hung up. I immediately tried again. It was busy.

For the next 10 minutes, we kept trying, but only got busy signals. Actually, most of the time it wasn't even that, but
those stupid, high pitched notes before the recorded voice tells you that all circuits are busy. Finally, I gave up and
suggested that we go back to Emerson and try to get tickets online.

So we basically ran back to Emerson and got there in about five minutes. While Jessica went to the pay phones there, I
raced to the computers, logged in, and pulled up the ticketmaster website...

...and waited as it downloaded...and waited...and waited. It just wouldn't work!

After I gave up, I joined Jessica at the pay phones. By now it was 10:35, and all dreams of floor seats vanished from my
head. But I still wanted to go to the concert, whether I got good or crappy seats. Eventually, I got through ("Oh thank
God!") to an automatic voice. The whole experience was very strange, hearing a recorded machine voice giving me
instructions. I followed blindly along, ending up getting two seats at Section 534, Row 20, for the total price of $151.00.

Holy cow.

The seating chart on the ticketmaster website was way too small to make out any section numbers, but I had a very
strong feeling that 534 was in the nosebleed section. I left with a very big sigh, not believing I spent $151 on tickets so
high I probably wouldn't even be able to tell the difference between a member of NSync and a stage prop.

But at least I had tickets.

So days and weeks and months passed, and by May I was back home in Ohio. And during one of those May days, I
wandered onto the ticketmaster website, just to see if I could find section 534 on the seating chart yet.

And lo and behold, tickets for a SECOND Cleveland concert were going on sale that very Saturday! Phew!

Coincidentally, that Saturday I had plans with Jessica again, so she was here when I tried to purchase those tickets. I
did this all online, because I only wanted to get tickets if they were good, and I didn't trust the automatic voice
 through the phone. Well, I tried, and got tickets for section 1, row 20. YAY! So I entered all the information and credit
card numbers and junk...only to find out that I took too long and the tickets were now gone. So I tried again, this time
getting section 2, row 39. So we were farther back, but closer to the center of the stage. Not bad! Certainly better than
section 534! Cripes.

So I bought the tickets, thinking I could sell the other two. Wishful thinking, but hey, this is NSync.

And that's the story behind The Tickets. My fingers hurt now, thank you.
 
 

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