When it comes to the things that I like, I am a snob. I have no problem admitting that openly. I’ve always been that person who is turned off by things that are popular, not because I think it’s cool, I just get sick of things being hyped beyond belief. The only instance where this hasn’t been the case, has been with Harry Potter. The boy wizard, I feel, is a perfectly acceptable exception and I am all the better for having been introduced to his magic. Had I not watched the first episode of Lost on its original airdate, I probably would curse its devoted viewers under my breath every Thursday night.
I’ve gotten better over the past few years with accepting the fact that there will be some people I dislike that share my interests. There are frat boys who listen to Journey. It annoys me. Growing up with a mother whose vanity plate read: JRNY FAN, I feel as if I was somehow there first. A territorial pissing, if you will. Afterall, while all my BFF’s in third grade were wearing New Kids on the Block sweat shirts, I was jamming out to Queen on my walkman. I like the New Kids now as opposed to then. Why? Because it’s hilarious to like them now. I am now rocking NKOTB in my Ford Focus while people my age are listening to…um…I don’t even know who…[insert name of cool, hip, and “innovative” new artist here].
I’d like to tell you a story about me. It’s not a very a long story, but it’s a rather heartwarming tale. It started nearly three years ago, in the late summer of 2005. My friend Adam Brown (Wave ‘hello’ Adam!) was shooting off at the mouth about some dudes he saw singing songs on HBO. Now, Adam and I share a sense of humor. There were a lot of things around the workplace that we laughed at when others didn’t. So he’s telling me how funny these guys are and how he really wished I could have been there to share the laughs. About a week later, he waltzes into my office (Adam has a mean waltz), plops a VHS tape on my desk (remember those?), and says, “Here are those guys. Watch them.”
I was a busy gal. I was commuting for an hour and a half each way to rehearsals for a show in Atlanta and working 30 hours a week. I forgot about the tape. Plus, I am rebellious and wild. I don’t like being told to do things, even if those things will make me laugh. Adam started posting these guys’ songs on his Myspace page. One of them in particular was pretty good bait. I watched the tape by myself one night in my living room. I laughed so loudly, my roommates had to come see what I was watching. Pretty soon, we were all hooked. We had viewing parties that started over margarita night at El Vaquero. One of us would say, “You gotta come see the tape.” At the end of the month, we had some 15-20 people in our close circle of friends singing these songs. Adam and I had to buy their first album from the internet, because it wasn’t available in the States. The guys in question? These dudes:
Sheer genius. Were you thrown by the fresh-faced Bret McKenzie? I spent nearly two years of my life telling everyone I met with a funny bone, “You need to listen to this.” I would play the Flight of the Conchords CD for them, hoping it would change their life for the better. I feel that it did. And if it didn’t, those people were never worth my time to begin with. So, yes. I was a fan. When I get behind something, it’s big time. I don’t dilly dally. I rally. And it was my ultimate goal to see them live.
Imagine my excitement when I learned my favorite Kiwis were getting their own series on HBO. Bret McKenzie and Jemaine Clement in weekly installments? Um…sold! Pretty soon, people were asking me about Flight of the Conchords. I was very territorial once again. My answer would be, “Yeah. Of COURSE! Are you kidding?! I liked them before most people in the US even knew about them.” I was downright boastful.
Several weeks ago, a Chicago tour date was announced for Flight of the Conchords, and I was up and waiting to get my tickets right at the crack of noon that Friday when they went on sale. I had three people checking online, two people on phones, and after half an hour (Only half an hour) of trying to get tickets, I was informed that the show was sold out. It sold in under 15 minutes. By that afternoon, tickets were being sold on Ebay and Craigslist at more than four times the face value. I love them, but I am not a rich woman. Make no mistake. I work for a pretty reputable Chicago landmark and pulled nearly every string imaginable, but to no avail. May 14, 2008 will be a day of mourning for me. While frat boys take ladies to the Chicago theater in hopes of getting laid for forking out three hundred bucks for Conchords tickets, I will be sitting at home. I’ll probably watch American Idol (Will it still be on then?) and wish I could go back in time to 2005 when things were simple and the Conchords somehow felt like they were my little discovery.
Bret and Jemaine are legitimate rockstars now. They win awards and such. See?! I’ve been booted off the ‘Flight.’ I am just a “little person.” I guarantee you, that half of the young women who actually do get to see the show that night, when polled, will say their favorite Queen song is “That one from ‘Wayne’s World,'” and quite frankly those people just make me sad. Here’s to territorial pissings, even if they get you no where in the end!
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