All Hail The Dark Ticket Overlord

1 07 2014

The Dark Master

Ticketmaster, you are an evil, merciless, overlord with an insatiable lust for money. And our souls.

It all started innocently enough. I just found out that one of my favorite indie performers was finally coming to South Florida, I couldn’t miss out on seeing her one-of-a-kind show. Again.

I was thrilled that last minute general admission tickets were only $25 each. And then the fees started and I my credit card and I were sucked into a dark spiral of despair.

A $10 service fee per ticket? (That’s 40% of the total ticket cost.)

What is included in this service that is apparently worth $10? An express manicure so that my nails and cuticles look their best when handing over said tickets and when applauding at the show? Access to the VIP Ticket Redemption Line at the show which includes a free shot of Goldschläger on the way in? Perhaps you are entered in a raffle to win a free iPad? (Everyone gives away free iPads.)

In any case, I can understand how the novel, cutting edge technology of buying something on the internet is worth the extra dollars. It’s very labor intensive. First there’s searching for and selecting the seats. Then typing in all of my information, then you are pressured to create an account and enter more information and then there is some very tedious button-clicking and – wait a minute. I’m doing all this work with no payment, yet other are profiting from my labor. Isn’t there a word for that? Wasn’t it banned in the US in the 1860s? I digress.

Standard gratuity for human beings that do service work like servers, masseuses, bartenders and hookers is only 20%. But that’s not even guaranteed. The patron has the right to tip whatever he or she wants. Whether it’s 10%, 25%, a passive aggressive note on the check itself, or the used lottery ticket, stray button and lint from your pocket.

So then add to that twenty bucks $5.65 for an Order Processing Fee and $2.50 for the privilege of printing at home. Almost $6 for maybe a full second of work? That’s $360/hour and most certainly six figures per year. I can’t think of anyone who makes that kind of salary – except maybe Beyonce. And then obviously you need to pay to print the tickets at home because hey – BUYING tickets electronically is easy. But redeeming tickets electronically is currently still an unsolved mystery of the universe like black holes, black jelly beans and time travel.

So my $50 tickets end up costing $78.15. Whew – got the confirmation email (shouldn’t there be a fee for this as well?) Now I can breathe a sigh of – hang on, what’s this?

It’s a gift from one of the Dark Master’s minions congratulating me on the insurance policy, which I apparently purchased for $14, insuring my intangible tickets, for the next four days. What a bargain!

I remember wishing I had intangible ticket insurance the LAST time my computer got hacked by terrorists and a couple of jihadists used it to access an EDM concert and attach a bomb to the subwoofer so that the stadium would explode when Skrillex finally ‘dropped the bass.’ (Fortunately their plan was thwarted by Jack Bauer and Jason Statham.)

So I guess now I understand why it’s called the omnipotent Ticketmaster. We are all slaves to its monopolous and unwavering will. Quick, you fool, open your wallet! The Dark Master demands a financial sacrifice or he will rain down lightning and fire and locusts upon us all! (Or just keep us from groveling at the feet of our favorite entertainers – which is a far worse fate.)



Try ‘Em & Fry ‘Em

20 08 2013

I am absolutely appalled and speechless after reading this article about three midwest kids who “were bored and didn’t have anything to do, so we decided to kill somebody.”

From left, James Francis Edwards, 15, Michael Dewayne Jones, 17, and Chancey Allen Luna, 16, are being tried as adults

From left, James Francis Edwards, 15, Michael Dewayne Jones, 17, and Chancey Allen Luna, 16, are being tried as adults (*disclaimer: horns not part of original mugshots)

Is that what our nation has been reduced to? Arrogant, entitled kids that thanks to pop culture and the internet have experienced all there is to experience in life by the age of 17, so logically they move on to killing people. Seriously, what a senseless act of violence.

This kid Christopher Lane was bettering himself both physically and mentally at the University of Oklahoma and he was brutally gunned down by three kids that probably wouldn’t have even graduated high school. Maybe its unfair to make that assumption as I know nothing more about these little bastards than what I’ve read in the news reports but judging by their cavalier attitude towards their crime and their blatant disregard for human life, I think its safe to assume that they were pretty worthless gutter punks.

So they were bored. At least they had a good reason for killing somebody. It’s not like they could have participated in some kind of physical activity themselves. And Heaven forbid any of them should have an after-school job and actually contribute something to society. And no kids probably do volunteer work these days to help other people or animals except the ones that want to look good on a college application. I would hypothesize and almost be willing to be money the Mtv and Playstation spent more time raising these kids than their parents did. Man, I’ve become cynical.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not blaming Lil Wayne or Halo or Call of Duty or whatever. These kids acted of their own free will and are totally at fault. However, I don’t think anyone can deny that pop culture glorifies slutty girls, thugs, hedonism and violence. Several reasons why I don’t own a TV, subscribe to cable or listen to pop music these days. So believe it or not, you do have choice as to whether or not you want to absorb this crap. That’s collectively what our American culture is: crap. Junkfood, fast food, mind-numbing music, celebrity worship, reality TV, tabloids. All worthless. And we are constantly exporting that crap to other countries. I traveled to Africa and Europe this summer – both continents that have centuries more culture than we have even been a nation and they trade it all for our Western crap culture. It’s “crapture.”

And how the hell did these kids get ahold of a gun in the first place? I’m sure this will reignite blazing fire that is the gun debate, which I don’t think was ever actually extinguished since the last tragedy. Should they be tried as adults? Absolutely. They were 100% conscious of their very adult decisions, if not its repercussions, at the time. Why does no one seem to have foresight these days? I get the impression that the majority of people can’t see beyond the weekend. I know I’m on a bit of a rant and I’ll calm down as it this story fades from the headlines just like everyone else, but the sentiment is still the same regardless of my emotional state. In fact, I will probably get angered several more times at the amount of time and taxpayer money wasted on trials of these sons of motherless goats.

Well, I hope you had your fun, kids. Because you’re going to be a lot more bored behind bars. Anticipating your rightful and imminent demises.

RIP Christopher Lane.

RIP Christopher Lane

Miranda’s Monthly Movie Review | Rant

15 08 2011

I was planning on writing a review about the epic conclusion of Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows or Cowboys and Aliens featuring a long-awaited return of Harrison Ford to the big screen, but all that is overshadowed by how much I hate going to movie theaters now. Besides the fact that tickets are ridiculously overpriced, there are just too many dumb people in the audience that ruin the experience. They can be classified into the following groups:

The Echoers: These people think they have some almighty knowledge that no one else around them could possibly possess. I can’t tell you how many times during HP7.2 this stupid chick next to me kept announcing new characters as they came on screen. I’m pretty sure the books sold gazillions of copies and you’re not the only one who read them and knows who all of the characters are.

The Critics/Commentators: These inconsiderate pricks like to discuss the movie and offer oh-so-brilliant insights as it’s happening. I’d like to turn around and make them feel as awkward as possible by making eye contact and trying to join in their conversation. I’d sum it up by saying “Well, clearly what you’re saying is more important than the film so I wanted to make sure I was in on it.”

The Munchers: These gluttonous bastards are constantly crunching, munching, crackling snacks and wrappers and slurping their drinks and making as much noise as possible. Do you really need a 5 course junkfood meal and to compulsively be stuffing your face during the whole film?

The Ear Rapists: These simple-minded movie-goers are too easily amused by bright colors and bad jokes. Seriously, the movie is not that funny. Do you think I could sneak a taser into the theater in my purse?

The Phone Freaks: Ok, there are like 10 messages before the movie starts about turning off or silencing your cell phone and people STILL answer them during the movie. Hopefully Darwinism will prevail and they’ll all die out thanks to brain tumors since they are unable to disconnect from their phones for even a couple hours.

Pop Culture is Making People Dumber [Rant]

21 03 2011

This is absolutely incomprehensible to me. Apparently that worthless famewhore, Jwow was at the GNC across the street from the agency today for God knows what reason. It was like time itself slowed down as chaos ensued. People left their computers and ran like sad, stupid sheep across the street. Why are people clamoring to be in the presence of this person? A partying pair of tig old bitties is not a rare sight in Miami. Oh yea, she was on that “show” that MTV created because they are on Pop Culture crack. And so is VH1, and Bravo and E! and pretty much the rest of TV. I mean, you see celebrity news almost as much as real news on the major networks now. I’ve lost all faith in TV – that’s why I sold mine on Craigslist and disconnected my cable service. TV = trash.

Remember when talent used to be a pre-requisite to be famous? You had to have an inordinate amount of intelligence or charisma or be able to create or entertain. Anything! Now, all you have to do is act a fool in front of a camera. It’s like talent has now become an afterthought. What is that person famous for? Oh yea, for being drunk, petty, rich, crazy, slutty, or all of the above.

And it’s not just TV. Music is careening in a downward spiral of mental destruction. I immediately switch the station on my car radio every time a new rap song comes on because I’m convinced that I am losing braincells and lowering my IQ to be able to comprehend what the heck they are saying. For the most part, pop music has been reduced to lyrics on a 3rd grade reading level and some kind of bland, repetitive beat.

I am seriously worried about the next generation. Ironically, people are writing more than ever through texts, Facebook, Twitter, blogs, websites, etc. but grammar and spelling is abominable. I have a friend who teaches middle school science and she says kids write text shorthand like “LOL” in their essays and that their spelling is atrocious. School and learning has become a low priority for lots of kids. All they care about is Justin Bieber’s latest tweet or which of their favorite ‘role models’ is in jail or rehab.

I feel like Pop culture, especially Rappers and Famewhoring Divas, are instilling an undeserved sense of entitlement in kids. I don’t need to go to school or work or listen to my parents or my teachers or anyone. All I need to do is hustle money or marry rich.

All we do is sit up in da club, sippin on bub, Yo shawty come get in my hot tub, rub a dub dub.

I be dressin’  like a ho’, wearin’ diamonds as I go – down to the grocery sto’ and the boys they all want mo.’

Wow. Why am I wasting my time with an advertising job?! I could totally quit and be a rapper and/or over-produced pop singer or star in my own reality tv show. RIGHT NOW. No talent or ability to form complete sentences or general brain function necessary. Nevermind, I’m totally over-qualified. I can count to 20.

Oh, and the internet just amplifies everything that music and the media start. Now don’t get me wrong, I am thoroughly enjoying mocking the Charlie Sheen saga and I enjoy a pointless YouTube video or a catchy beat or reading the Superficial sometimes, but they’re far from a priority. The internet has many awesome uses and users. The main reason I even keep up with pop culture at all is because it’s kind of part of my job to know what appeals to the masses. But if there was an epic battle between Good and Stupid, I’m pretty sure Good would be crushed under a siege of Stupid mind-numbing Pop zombies.

We’re all doomed.

For Better or For Worse? Definitely For Worse.

28 11 2010

Seriously?!?! A show called Bridalplasty is debuting on E! tonight?! We all know my feelings about reality TV and I have to admit there’s not a single show on that network that I can watch for more than 3 minutes without wanting to stab my eyes out with chopsticks anyways, but they’ve reached a new low. (How appropriate that they were sponsoring “the Superficial.”)

I always thought that the purpose of a wedding was to share a special day with someone you sincerely care about. Not to emulate a famewhoring celebrity diva and exploit it. Guaranteed most of these chicks aren’t even getting married – the only requirement was to show up with a white dress and an insatiable, selfish thirst for limelight. I can hardly put into words how appalled I am at how much people practically worship reality TV and tabloids. It’s idolatry, for real. I mean if you spend more time trying to keep up with the kardashians (or insert other worthless gossipmongers here) than your own friends and family, that’s just pathetic.

I’m canceling my cable service, like tomorrow.

My Last Nerve…

16 05 2010

…could be triggered by any one of the following annoyances:

• Inconsiderate drivers not signaling when they change lanes.

• Being tailgated.

• Dogs licking me and dog slobber in general.

• Slow walkers. Slow talkers. Slow drivers. I guess slow people in general.

• Pronouncing the word “Ask” as “Axe.”

• The presence or mere smell of cigarette smoke.

• Being late (Esp. if it’s someone else’s fault).

Make a mental note.

Rant: “Celebrities” Ruining the World, After Themselves, Of Course.

22 01 2010

I usually try to keep things pretty positive, but once in a while something will set me off. This time it is the recent news of wanna-Bar-bie, Heidi Montag getting 10 plastic surgeries in one day at the age of 23. (They forgot to mention the much less-publicized surgery she got before this “fakefest” in which a plastic surgeon reduced the size of her brain because she tought it was “fat and too full of rational thoughts.”) I can’t believe the lengths some people will go to in hopes of extending the 15 minutes they shouldn’t have even had in the first place. This crazy b*tch is the perfect embodiment of all that I despise about pop culture.

First, Reality TV. My own personal theory is that it erodes your brain cells as you watch it, which makes you dumber by every over-dramatized minute until you eventually reach the diminutive IQ of the people that you have become obsessed with watching. The term itself is a paradox, considering people are baited and scripted into acting like complete idiots. You are what you watch, people. Don’t even get me started on Jersey Shore, the latest piece of garbage to be siphoned off the slums of television.

Naturally (Ha! pun intended), this is how Heidi got her start, on the Hills, and I’m fuzzy on the details because I really have more important things to worry about, but I think there was a spin-off show sprinkled with some publicity stunts. Something about a wedding and swine flu? Then, you know, once you’ve been in the tabloids for at least a year it is mandatory that you record a mind-numbing album full of songs that you fished out of Britney’s [trailer] trash.

So clearly this stunt was a twisted way of promoting her aptly-titled debut album “Superficial.” And, even if she does have an American Express Black card, she’s gotta be dreading that bill because according to The Superficial, she claims “I spent every dollar I have on this [album].” Of course you had to self-finance this endeavor – even a legally blind and tone-deaf American Idol contestant reject can see that’s an epic failure waiting to happen. So it looks like she is going to be the best-looking homeless person in all of Los Angeles. I bet she can at least get a part-time job as a discount sex shop mannequin.

Call me crazy, but I think fame should be reserved for and earned by those who are actually talented. Yeah, I’m still not a fan of self-centered, spoiled celebrities in general, but at least they are legitimately singing, dancing, acting or otherwise performing their way into the limelight. That being said, they deserve some acclaim, not to be worshiped. Seriously, more people would rather read US Weekly than read the Bible or the New York Times. Who f*ing cares what flavor of ice cream Crazyman Cruise and his Stepford Wife’s daughter ate last week? Mint-chocolate chip must be so “in” this season!

(Note: I know I am somewhat fueling this fame-addiction that I have condemned by commenting on this celebridiculousness, but like every junkie, she will eventually get so high that she will either completely self-destruct or come to what’s left of her senses. I don’t really care which.)