No, I didn’t win the lottery. But I did manage to buy two tickets to paradise… wait, no… two tickets to see Pearl Jam. The 5 against 1 crowd is doing a one off show in Philly this October (full scale tour won’t be until next year after their 8th studio album is released) and decided to do a limited pre-sale for fan club members yesterday morning – afternoon for us East Coasters. For the first time ever, I would actually get to use my fan club membership in an attempt to get awesome tickets (I forgot to even try for their shows in Atlantic City this September). Unfortunately, it almost was never to be.
A few minutes before the sale started, I was already struggling with the login system. The website kept disappearing, and it looked like I wouldn’t even get a chance before they sold out. But everybody was having the same problems, and very few were getting through at all. The timeouts were coming fast and furious, so two more windows were popped open for firewall and proxy reconfigurations. Sure, I was at work and this might cause problems for the other users, but that’s why us sys admins are gods! Even still, I screwed up the numbers multiple times and couldn’t find a way around the cache fast enough. Time was ticking off the clock faster than my mind could deal with – I was certain the show would be sold out by quarter after the hour.
But the system just couldn’t handle it. Half an hour into the spectacle I had managed to not only log in, but put a pair of tickets into my cart. Now I was battling the timeouts from the secure server as it continually ignored my shipping address confirmation. I PRESSED THE DAMN BUTTON, SO DO SOMETHING. Alas, I would either get blank stares from some inaccessible error message or a nonstop swirling icon in the upper right teasing me as if something was actually working.
And then there was the occasional back button panic – you mean I have to start all over?!?!
Nevertheless, patience paid off. I stared down at the beast, and the beast blinked. When it asked for my credit card numbers, I gave them willingly. And then I just said, “You do your thing. I’ll be over in this other tab, so you just take your pretty little time processing that order of mine.” And after 40 minutes, the website conceded defeat. There was mild concern as my confirmation e-mail took longer than expected, but the server had already acquiesced – there would be no victory in denying me now.
The whining and gnashing of teeth followed from all corners. Perhaps I would have felt the other fans’ outrage more had I not procured a pair, but that didn’t change the fact of the matter. I could confidentally call anyone complaining a spoiled brat, because I still managed to get mine! Whose fault is it if you didn’t get yours?
Seriously, though, Pearl Jam is the best live show I’ve ever been to. This will be my 8th time seeing them, and definitely not my last. Tickets for the October 3rd show will go on sale at Ticketmaster Saturday, August 6th at 10am EDT. Trust me, they’re worth the hassle.