Attention Bruce fans: it’s time to rebel! Occupy Ticketmaster!

Like most other rabid Springsteen fans, I spent a large portion of my weekend dealing with the utter failure of a system that is Ticketmaster.

I won some.  I lost some.  I got the 15-minute wait time message that lasted close to two hours.  I ripped out huge chunks of hair in frustration.  I cried.  I smashed things.  I roared my terrible roar and gnashed my terrible teeth.  And, in the end, I wound up with the tickets that I was looking for.

Others weren’t so lucky.

Ticketmaster claimed on Friday that the problems were caused by scalpers, who launched a massive cyber attack on the site.

Which I might be more likely to believe was really the issue if Ticketmaster didn’t own TicketsNow, one of the biggest resale sites out there.

And if seats for the shows hadn’t been on TicketsNow BEFORE the on-sale date.


Sounds fishy to me too.

Clearly, something needs to be done.

And of course, as the future ruler of the world, I have the solution.

First, Ticketmaster needs to be deposed. That much is obvious and uncontested. I think that anyone who tried to buy a ticket from them over the last few days is in absolute agreement that this needs to happen.

The question is how.

Unfortunately, cyber attacks don’t seem to be the answer. If Ticketmaster is telling the truth, then all cyber attacks accomplish is making the fans angrier. It didn’t actually bring about any kind of a change, it just dicked everyone over.

So if we want to actually overthrow Ticketmaster, like with any evil dictator, we need to do it old-school. I mean, we can use social media to organize the protest, like Egypt did, but in the end, it’s going to need to be a storming-the-Bastille type revolution.

Their corporate offices are in LA, so I recommend we do it when we’re out there for the LA Bruce show in April. You know, the whole kill two birds with one stone type of deal.

But what happens when Ticketmaster is gone?

Lots of people have been suggesting better ways to deal with ticketing. I’ve heard rumblings on the message boards of people blaming Bruce’s camp for this snafu, as well as suggesting that there be a fan club to help the “real fans” get tickets first. And I mean, that’s not the world’s worst answer. But it’s not the best answer either.

The problem is that when Ticketmaster has been destroyed, odds are, much of the rest of society will fall apart as well. There will be complete and utter anarchy as people scramble to get their tickets without the totalitarian despotic regime of Ticketmaster dictating how our tickets need to be obtained. And unless we put another system in place, there will be riots, natural disasters and biblical style plagues as people try to get their tickets.

And that’s just what I’m gong to inflict on the people who keep me from getting MY tickets.

Luckily, I have the answer.

We need a Hunger Games-style, to-the-death, battle royale to determine who gets which tickets.

No really. It’s the perfect solution.

Think about it. The scalpers won’t bother, because they’re completely soulless and just trying to profit off the misery of others. They’re not going to risk their OWN lives to get tickets to see Bruce.

But the rest of us? Oh hell yeah. It’s on.

AND it fixes a lot of other things that everyone has been whining about on recent Bruce tours. Think about it. How many times have you NOT been in the front of the pit because little kids were up there? How many times have you sat through Bruce pulling them up to sing “Waiting on a Sunny Day”?

They won’t survive the ticketing process, so that problem is solved. AND their annoying parents will be so busy trying to protect the little ones that it’ll be really easy to take them out too.

And how many times have you been surrounded by drunken idiots yelling out requests for songs that no one wants to hear? Like the idiots who brought signs requesting “Mary’s Place.” I mean, REALLY? You REALLY want to hear “Mary’s Place” again? I only went to four shows on the Rising tour and STILL spent more time listening to that song than it would take to watch Gone With the Wind. Twice.

Luckily, with my system, the drunken idiots would no longer be at the shows, because they’d be the first ones to go down after the kids in the battle royale. It’s REALLY easy to knock a drunk down. Just put on a strobe light. They fall down on their own. (That actually works. And it’s REALLY fun to do if you’re sober at a party. Yes, I’m a horrible person. Deal with it.)

Of course, some people might argue that a better system might be to just sell tickets the day of the show at the door. You show up, pay, go in, done. No more scalpers. But where’s the fun in that? Where’s the competitive edge? Where’s the sheer joy of beating the crap out of the people who want to get your tickets?

No, my solution is clearly the answer.

Or, I suppose the government could step in and actually enforce some of those antitrust laws, which, as I understand it, were written to prevent corporations like Ticketmaster from holding a complete monopoly and causing problems like those that happened this weekend.

That might work too.

"The same thing we do every night, Pinky: Try to take over the world."

There are a lot of things that I’m really good at. Sleeping, unfortunately, is not one of them. In fact, I may be the worst sleeper in the world.

The clinical term for my condition is insomnia. I prefer to call it Extreme Sleep Deprivation Torture. Let me tell you, depriving prisoners of sleep at Guantanamo was probably FAR less humane than any of the other unsanctioned methods that were used there. I’d take waterboarding any day if it meant I could get a good night’s sleep. Seriously. Bring it on, just give me a cure for insomnia afterward.

People who can sleep easily don’t understand just how crippling insomnia is. My favorite movie, Fight Club, describes it best.

When people tell me to get a good night’s sleep for something, I want to punch them in the face. Don’t you realize I’d LOVE to get a good night’s sleep? You might as well tell me to outrun an airplane. It doesn’t matter how much I want it, for me, sleep isn’t happening.

I’ve been an insomniac for as long as I can remember. When I was a little kid and I couldn’t sleep (aka every single night of my childhood), I would sneak downstairs after my mother went to bed and watch Letterman with my dad. And when I was little, he was still on at 12:30, but that didn’t matter because I was awake. Dad would let me watch through the Top Ten list with him, then I had to go to bed. And on nights when I made a second trip downstairs because I still couldn’t sleep, he would threaten to sing to me if I didn’t get in bed.

Yes, threaten was the right word when it came to my family’s singing. So off I would go to bed with a flashlight and a book, because sleep just wasn’t happening.

But no one ever thought to take me to a doctor, because in my family, you didn’t go to a doctor unless you had a severed limb. If it was still hanging on by a thread, you were expected to walk it off. So trouble sleeping wasn’t exactly a doctor-worthy problem. Although if I had gnawed my own arm off because I couldn’t sleep, I probably could have gone to the doctor, but I would have had to get all the way through the arm, so it wasn’t worth the effort.

I never really knew that I was expected to actually sleep for a full night until I got to college and had a roommate, who let me know just how bizarre my sleep patterns were. Then I got worried. What was wrong with me?

My grandmother had the solution (or so she thought). She gave me Ambien. No, she’s not a doctor. But she somehow has more pills than a pharmacy. Literally. If the police ever raided her house, she’d be in some trouble. Then again, she probably wouldn’t. She can talk her way out of anything. And if any of the cops were Jewish, she’d try to marry me off to them.

But I digress.

So she gave me Ambien and I thought, “Great! Here’s the answer! I’ll be cured.”


Three days later, when I hadn’t sleep a wink, I gave my grandma the rest of her pills back. And I at least managed a couple hours of sleep without the Ambien. Apparently I’m so sleep-dysfunctional that the most commonly prescribed sleep aid in the country keeps me as awake as six shots of espresso would for a normal person. No thank you.

Years later, a doctor (and I use the term “doctor” loosely here… he had a prescription pad and an office, but I’m pretty sure REAL doctors don’t give out as much dangerous medication as he gave me without even asking any questions about my sleep problems) gave me a prescription for Halcion. Which was AMAZING. I slept like I’d never slept before. It was the happiest time in my life.

Until I realized that it was basically like taking roofies every night.

I started having to take the pills earlier and earlier to go to bed at the same time every night, and I wasn’t remembering anything that happened after taking the pills. I’d talk to friends and they’d remind me that we had already had the same conversation. Only I couldn’t remember it. Not even a little, like when you blackout drunk and remember what happened when people remind you. Nothing. Then I woke up one morning with a shopping bag next to my bed and didn’t remember going out. So it was time to stop taking the Halcion.

Since then, I’ve tried every non-prescription remedy on the planet. I have a white noise machine and a sleep mask. I’ve taken melatonin and valerian. Not much helps.

So when I’m lying in bed unable to sleep, I do what everyone in my position does: plot world domination.

Yes, I’m serious. You see, that’s the one and only benefit to being an insomniac. I might be a zombie for large portions of the day, but when I lie down, I’m wide awake and therefore have a LOT more time to plan how I will conquer the world than you do.

Someday, when you least expect it, my fellow non-sleepers and I will rise up while you sleepers are wasting away precious hours in bed. And be warned, we don’t like you. In fact, we hate you. Because you have the one thing we want more than anything else in the world. Sleep.

Next time you wonder why I’m cranky, do me a favor: stay awake for two full days and nights. Then see how happy you are when people tell you that they were so tired that they fell asleep super early the night before. If you at least TRY to put yourself in our shoes, we might spare you when the sleep revolution comes. But if you’re sleeping when we come for you, don’t hold your breath.