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Old 12-01-2005, 02:29 PM   #1
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goat=ass (ATL 11/18-19)

I know it was a couple of weeks ago, but not even my keyboard is working on my computer at home, so I was really stuck trying to get this whole adventure down. Anyhow, here's the story...

Friday 4AM - I still have no running vehicle, so I get on my bicycle in 28-degree-F weather and ride down to the bus station 12 miles away. Takes me an hour and a half as there are huge hills even my goat-legs can't climb. I get on the bus, which takes me into ATL, where I board MARTA (rapid rail system) and get off at the door to Phillips Arena and find my way to the GA line

730AM - I finally get a number, even though I've been there 30 mins and had no idea that system was going on here. I remember the Chicago 10th GA fiasco - a near-riot over last-minute line-breakers with no help from security - so I'm naturally dubious and give the list-folks a mildly hard time (goat=ass)

9AM - I start going up and down the GA line asking folks if they have a CD player. If they do (or, in one guy's case, a laptop), I give them a disk with my MofoTomorrow mash-up on it and ask them to listen to it. (I carried two disks with me that day, one data disk with MofoTomorrow_mp3 and an abbreviated .txt file, the other disk set up as a music disk with MofoTomorrow, the HMTMKMKM mixes and the Salome mixes I had made.) Rave reviews all around and I made a few new friends and had some interesting conversations. That's about all that happened during the day, other than going into the CNN Center (same building as Phillips Arena, part of a big complex) for food and restroom breaks (and to warm up - it was damn cold most of the day!)

6PM (or so) - the big line-up, chick on a megaphone giving GA instructions, folks jostling for position and of course the inevitable squabble with a few late-coming linebreakers. I was impressed though, as these line-breakers were quickly squashed and moseyed towards the back of the line.

645PM (or so) - the gates were opened, I was scanned, disappointed "PROCEED TO FLOOR" and raced for the floor. Got a good spot just to the right of the center of the ellipse. A couple was on the rail there, wearing white shirts, each had a U or a 2 on the front and the back (so that no matter how you were looking at them, you would see "U2") - cute... cheesy as hell, but cute.They told me that they were both very tall (guy 6'9" and girl 6'2"), so I shouldn't sit behind them. I was actually just to the right of them, so I didn't worry about it, but I thought it was pretty silly all the same. (What, did they expect to have a cleared out area on the floor behind them during the show?)
At any rate, I ended up behind an older lady (in her forties, if I was thinking kindly) who was a real bitch. Just before U2 came on, I was shoved hard from behind and I straight-armed my hand to the rail to prevent myself from crushing her. She came down with her elbow on my arm HARD - I got a pretty good bruise from it - and told me I was *not* to touch the rail. Oh you bet she got my hackles up quick with that shit!!!!!!! The short of it was that I told her that I was not going to try to prevent myself from running into her if I got shoved again (which I was, quite a bit after the show started). Don't fuck with the goat, lady, you'll get the horns! GRRRRRRRR!!!!! }:(~ I ended up knocking her into the rail on a number of occasions - I didn't do it on purpose, I just never tried to stop myself again - and I even head-butted her on accident when I was dancing like a maniac with my eyes closed and she stepped back into me. Ooops - I got a hard head, so I wasn't bothered. I don't care if you think I'm an ass for that or not, I STILL had the knot on my arm where she hit me nearly a week later and I have no regrets about that bitch.

730PM - The lights dim, and In.. err, Inter.. err, no, that's not right... ahh.. oh yeah, Institute came on with their three power chords and the grunge act (if they had three chords...) I recognized a couple of songs and was like "oh, I see, that's who it is!" but then was told that they used to be Bush (or something to that effect) - I never got the whole thing straight. Maybe I just didn't care. I heckled them a couple of times - nothing more dramatic than yelling "Freebird!" at them or something similar. However, I WAS impressed by the lead singer - Gavin somebody-or-other - because he worked the *whole* stage - the ellipse, the rails (yeah, that crazy idiot stood on the rails - what, did he think he was Bono or something?) I always have to give a pat on the back for ANYONE daring to come on the stage before U2, but he tried to make something of it. I almost felt bad for him when he didn't. Oh well.

9PM - The moment of truth - the show began. I'm not going to tell you all about about because you could take nearly any review and stick it in here. But it was definately magical for me - I sang like a cat being strangled and danced like a goat (goats have two left feet, you know!) throughout the whole show. Just wanted to mention one thing - towards the end of the show, all four band members were on the front of the ellipse, and the little keyboard thingy that Larry was about to use was lifted onto the stage behind Bono, who promptly took two giant steps back and nearly toppled it over before it was saved by the crew. Funny as hell, right in front of me, and Bono was completely oblivious. And then Larry was almost late getting to it, he had to run and reach his finger out for the first note like a football player stretching for the goalline... ah, them boys...

1115PM - show's over and I go straight to the GA line again, to find 28 people already on the list, but only two people waiting in line (long story short there, most came back in a reasonable amount of time, but ten folks were scratched off the list because they hadn't shown up by even 2PM Saturday). The night doesn't need much describing - cold, cold, cold, fucking cold!! I did have a heavy coat, many layers of clothing, even pantyhose (works like thermal underwear) and a couple of pairs of socks, but it wasn't enough. Wind chill must have been in the teens. Brrrrr... At about 1AM a guy came and talked to another guy right next to me, handed him a sleeping bag and left. The guy who got the sleeping bag let me sit in his lounge chair the rest of the night (getting off the cold concrete helps!) and I made like a hobo and covered myself with newspaper. Also, since I was so frozen I couldn't sleep and the few others who were there were bundled up and snoozing, I ended up with the job of line-Nazi, signing people up and giving out numbers. I found it highly ironic - I always argue against fans policing fans - I think it just makes for bad blood. But I was asked, and you know me, so I got into it. Besides, it gave me another chance to make an ass out of myself, so... };)~

630AM - The CNN Center opens and I get up to go inside and get warm. My feet are so frozen I can barely walk. I spent much of the morning inside, I'd done my time overnight and fuck staying out in the cold anymore than I had to. (Yeah, I was feeling like a mean old goat by then - no one's fault but mine, but that didn't make me any nicer that morning.) The rest of the day went pretty much as the day before, except I was closer to the head of the line, and there were less people to victimize with MofoTomorrow (less people who had something that could read the CDs, or else they'd already heard it the day before). I was surprised to find a guy named Scott who had MofoTomorrow on his player - he'd come down from Seattle for the show and had gotten the recording from a website somewhere (not Interference - someone's blog, I think). That's cool, though, because the download also included the original text file. Since we were both there at the concert alone, we ended up being ellipse partners (if one of us got in, the other would too). THAT worked out extremely well! }:)~

I'm not going to have timestamps for the rest of the day - I'm bored with that... }:)~ At any rate, I met up with Miroslava (from Interference) (cripes, I can't remember her real name, I am SO terrible with names!) (goat=ass!) and a couple of other folks who were very cool and kind to me (you know me...) At any rate, someone mentioned going to see the boys when they arrived at the arena, so I decided what the hell, I've never done anything like that before, why not? So I found out from a third person where to go (other side of the building, across the street from the box office, down three flights of stairs to the parking garage...) and walked over there at about 4PM. There were about 20-30 folks there, all lined up behind a barrier, and I smoked and waited... and waited... tick tock tick tock, seemed like forever and I was worried about my place in line as the lineup would start at about 6 and I needed to eat soon and...

Then comes Bono hisself (sic) in a Chevy Blazer (I think that's what it was). He gets out with his bodyguard and starts moseying over towards my end of the line. He looked like he was going to his funeral (he had that look on his face!) so I yelled out "Hey, smile like you like us!" (goat=ass) He completely ignored me and began talking to people, posing for pictures and signing autographs... SIGNING AUTOGRAPHS??

It was then that I realized that not only did I not have a camera, I didn't have anything to get an autograph on! (goat=DUMBass) Um.. umm... oh damn, now what? Ah, my ticket from the night before was still in my pocket (I was wearing a huge coat with four huge pockets that I was carrying everything in - like a packmule). He's talking to the folks next to me -

Girl: This man came from Columbia - his whole village pitched in to get him here!
Bono: I love Columbia!
Me: (thinking) It takes a village... and what is it about Columbia that Bono likes so much, eh? }:)~

- and I'm feeling in my pockets for the ticket. I begin to pull out the CD I had in one pocket to see what else was in it and then THE MAN }:)~ was standing in front of me.

"I have a gift for you," I hear myself say - no, I wasn't going to give it to him, my mouth was acting completely independently of my brain. Then I look up at him, realizing what I just said. DOH! "What is it?" he asks. So I watch myself hand him the CD (thinking what are you DOING?) and tell him "It's a mash-up I did of Mofo and Tomorrow. Everyone who's heard it really likes it." Not exactly what I wanted to say to one of the boys on meeting them, but oh well. So he goes to take the CD and I don't let go of it, I'm just staring at it like a moron (ever had that feeling you wished you could have a REWIND button in real life? I was desperately wishing I hadn't given it to him, but it was too late...) So he grabs my hand with his other hand and I realize what I'm doing and let it go. He's got his pen poised now, like he's supposed to be auotgraphing something, but I'm feeling a bit like a deer in the headlights so I just start babbling about Mofo, asking him to play it (the people I spent much of the day with - various groups - ALL wanted to hear Mofo, so it wasn't just the mash-up that kept it on my brain). ""We'll see" is all I get out of him, and he goes to move on. I was like "Hey, I'd appreciate it" knowing full well right then that Mofo wasn't on the menu for the evening...

As he starts talking to others and signing autographs and posing for pictures, I suddenly realize what I did. I was embarrassed as hell - it's funny, I am really a shy person when it comes to offering my work (whatever it is) up for public dissection, and so the whole time I was finding people to listen to the mash-up, I was nervous about their reaction (too often, the things I think are cool are not other people's cup of tea). So everytime someone would listen to it and say "Wow!" or "That's fantastic!" or "Wow, that's fantastic!" I'd breathe a sigh of relief. At any rate, my feet take off and the rest of me followed - I told myself (aloud) "Well, I did what I came here to do." and I wasn't talking about giving him the disk.

You see, I'd been thinking about what kind of fan I am. I've been in love with their music for 22 years - 2/3 of my life - and I had only seen them once (in 1987), never joined the fan club, didn't have a whole bunch of boots, had few collectibles (though that's not entirely my fault, I lost quite a few LPs and such in my divorce - long story, but my ex destroyed what he could find before I could get it back), never did any of the things that other fans had done. So this year I had knocked a few things off the list:
I joined the fanclub
I went out of town for a show - Chicago, May 10
I waited all day in the GA line - and overnight.
I met someone in the band
(there's one more I got done, though I haven't gotten to that part of the story yet)

So it's been a good year for me as a fan. I kinda screwed up the meeting part, but at least it was done.

At any rate, I flew out of there as fast as I could - bum knee and all - and went back to the folks in the GA line and start babbling to them about what I did. I can't fucking believe it - my brain is short-circuiting. I know you think I overreacted, but you have to know me to understand that Bono is the absolute LAST person I'd've wanted to give that to... why oh why didn't I give him the other disk?? The one with just the mixes on it, not the frikking text file? Hey, I know he's probably got pretty thick skin and all, that's not the point. Here I am giggling about the song that's supposedly about his Mom dying and all. How rude. Maybe you don't see it that way, but I sure do. I guess it's just the principle of the thing.

Speaking of Principle... the more I think about it, the happier I am that the addy I left was my hotmail one, not the U2.com one. At U2.com, they've got my (real) full name, address, all that. Can you say 'unauthorized distribution of copyrighted works'??? Cripes. I hope they never make the connection....

But I can hope that if Bono was interested in it at all that he popped the CD into a player, it didn't play (needs a computer, you know) and he discarded it as a bad burn... Ah, hope springs eternal...

Folks in the line thought it was VERY VERY cool that I had given it to him, so I felt a little bit better. Scott (the guy who'd gotten the mix from someone else's site) said "hey, people get his autograph all the time, at least you gave something to him!" and I said something to the effect that I wish I had had a dozen roses in my pocket instead and Scott said, "people give him flowers all the time, how often do people give him something as cool as that?" (meaning the mix). So by the time the line got organized (6:30PM or so), I was only mildly pinging and had lost the deer in the headlights look.

Scott was number 60 or so, and we agreed to be ellipse partners, so I kept my eye on him as they lined us up. Normally, we'd go in at about this time, but there's some holdup (we found out a few minutes later that the band was STILL doing soundchecks - WTF? Didn't they play there last night?) Anyways, we even get checked by security and allowed into the 'starting gate' - the slots lined up in front of each door. I end up behind a kid and no one else is in front (don't ask me, security just lined us up that way) with Miroslava and co. right behind me and Scott not too far behind them. When we FINALLY are allowed into the door, I am the first one to be scanned in my line as the kid got an automatic pass into the ellipse with his folks. I present my arm so that the lady can put a GA wristband on it and I still had the one on from the night before, so she says "I gotta cut this off honey." So while she cuts it off and gives me a new one, Miroslava says, "I'm going to go ahead of you, okay, Paula?" "Sure, sure, go ahead." So she gets scanned - PROCEED TO FLOOR. I'm right behind her and I get scanned VERTIGO VERTIGO VERTIGO "AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!" (I really didn't think I'd react that way, I guess with all the shit on my mind I just exploded!) I jumped up in the air and nearly landed on the security guard (I DID land on my bad knee, but I didn't feel that until much later). As soon as I landed I turned and yelled "Scott! Scott!! Come on!!!!" and his face just lit up like a kid meeting Santa Claus. In his rush to get his ellipse wristband, he didn't get his GA band and they tried to hassle him but it was all resolved and in we went...

...to be stopped right at the actual arena doors by security - the BAND was STILL rehearsing!!! (Pieces of City of Blinding Lights could be heard, and not much else.) Agh!!! Hurry up already!!Anyhow, Scott grabs me from behind in a huge bearhug and all is happy and joyful and expectant.... FINALLY we are allowed in and I'm trying to run down the stairs with my bad knee, poor Scott right behind me trying to be encouraging... we get out wristbands scanned, we're in FRONT ROW CENTER STAGE WOOOOOHOOOOOO!!!!!! I was actually just to the right of center, Scott stayed over at the left of center. I was so excited that I grabbed the crowd barrier and started banging around like an angry oranguatan - well, it kept folks from crowding me, at any rate! Okay, space has been made, coat's over the side of the rail (with everyone else's), I so excited I'm coming out of my skin... and then it's...

Innertrude (j/k, ever seen the movie 'Office Space'?) }:)~ I was still not impressed by the band, though I was a lot closer. I found it interesting, however, that they would stretch a couple of songs for ten minutes or more, especially since the crowd was so indifferent to them. Well, not completely indifferent - nearby in the ellipse was a group of girls that would yell together "Gavin, we love you! Gavin, we love you!" in between songs until he finally looked at them, smiled and said "I love you too!" It was fucking hilarious when he said it, I don't know if the girls got the pun or not, but I swear he winked at me when I burst out laughing. At least he had a sense of humor! }:)~

U2 was... well, the first three songs were a bit of a blur for me - I grabbed ahold of the rail and was in full mosh-pit bang-a-ray mode (I didn't hit anyone, don't worry!) }:)~ I was way out of control, working off a huge amount of tension I didn't even know I had. Fabulous. I did cool down a bit when the girl next to me said "You know, it's really distracting when you stomp your feet like that." (Hey, she was cool, so I chilled.) At any rate, amazing, awesome, fabulous, fuckmerunning, man did I have a blast! I even provided a few stereotypical redneck screeches and rebel yells, just for the fuck of it (no, I don't normally do things like that, even when inotxicated!) }:)~ Man, the crowd itself was over the top that night, definately the best show I went to, though I don't know how much being where I was had to do with it (probably alot, you know!!!)

Long story short (errr...), after the show I couldn't find a ride, so I took MARTA as far northwest as it went and got off and rode my bicycle until I couldn't go no more. I called my boss (it was 9AM) and he came and picked me up and I went straight to work for 11 hours. Needless to say, I slept well Sunday night!


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Old 12-01-2005, 03:52 PM   #2
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Re: goat=ass (ATL 11/18-19)

Originally posted by rivergoat
IAt any rate, I met up with Miroslava (from Interference) (cripes, I can't remember her real name, I am SO terrible with names!) (goat=ass!)
goat, dear, Miroslava is her real name

Thanks for the story! I'll have to finish it at home, but I love reading other fan stories....

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Old 12-01-2005, 03:59 PM   #3
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Hey, I know you.

I was the one there by myself on Friday and with my sister on Saturday. I was right behind you, Miroslava and Michelle going in on Saturday night.

I don't even want to THINK about that nonsense with going in.
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Old 12-02-2005, 07:54 AM   #4
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Wow, quite an experience. Glad you had a great time
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Old 12-02-2005, 12:24 PM   #5
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phew! rivergoat, i think i read through all of that ... really entertaining and funny though ... loved all the goat references =D
btw, i too have heard the mofotomorrow mashup and i loved it! our local radio station here plays pretty good mashups all the time and i thought that one was worthy of getting airplay! i have to say i wasnt really the biggest fan of either song before but that totally gave me a new appreciation for those songs
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Old 12-02-2005, 03:16 PM   #6
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Re: Re: goat=ass (ATL 11/18-19)

Originally posted by LivLuvAndBootlegMusic

goat, dear, Miroslava is her real name :lol:

Thanks for the story! I'll have to finish it at home, but I love reading other fan stories....
ahhh... bugger, I remember so many people telling me they were so-and-so from interference or so-and-so from U2.com, I got everything mixed up! goat=... nevermind...

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Old 12-02-2005, 03:18 PM   #7
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Originally posted by thesuburbskill

btw, i too have heard the mofotomorrow mashup and i loved it! our local radio station here plays pretty good mashups all the time and i thought that one was worthy of getting airplay! i have to say i wasnt really the biggest fan of either song :reject: before but that totally gave me a new appreciation for those songs
By all means, send it to the radio station... hee hee hee... }:D~ I just want everyone to hear it! I don't care if credit is given - think of it as a virus, it's best not to know where it came from!


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