December 8, 2010 - Suncorp Stadium - Brisbane, Queensland, Australia - U2 Feedback

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Old 12-08-2010, 09:51 AM   #1
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December 8, 2010 - Suncorp Stadium - Brisbane, Queensland, Australia

Please post your experiences, pics and reviews for this show here.

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December 8, 2010 - Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane AU - Interference.com Photo Gallery (U2 Photos, U2 Concert Photos, Member Photos)
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Old 12-08-2010, 06:27 PM   #2
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Didn't reach lift off!

I was at the Brisbane show last night, standing just in front of the mix position,(Kevin Rudd was standing right behind me).Now I'm a long time fan and have been to quite a few shows. I thought the production was excellent but for some reason I didn't really get lift off like in previous shows I've been to. (This was my first 360 show) Maybe it was the crowd, I don't know but it felt a little flat. I think It's one of the only shows I've seen where most of the people in seats were sitting for most of the show!

I know if you are close to the stage it's always fantastic, but you have to sacrifice to get there and stay there. I'm going again tonight for my last show for this tour, maybe I will try to get closer to the stage and grin and bear the sauna like conditions. It was a nice moment when Bono got a girl out of the crowd and laid down on her lap! She didn't know whether to touch him or not!!

Hoping I'll enjoy tonight better!!
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Old 12-08-2010, 06:43 PM   #3
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I was in the pit, just about in the middle but slightly to Edge's side at last night's show. This was my second U2 concert, my first was Vertigo in Brisbane in 2006. Out of the group I was with, only 2 of us were fans, the rest had never been to a U2 show.

Before Vertigo, I was following setlists, listening to the album, etc constantly, whereas this time I had read virtually nothing and decided just to go along and see what happened. I loved it. I don't think the show had the same emotional lift as Vertigo, but that could be because I didn't have quite so much time and energy invested in it. It was brilliant in a different way. And to be honest, once the music started I didn't give a rat's what everyone around me thought, I went nuts and sang every lyric and danced like no one was watching. The pit was jumping, at least the bit I was in, though there were small pockets around me where people only reacted to the really big numbers (Streets, etc), or didn't react at all. The look on Bono's face as the crowd sang to him was priceless - you can see that he values that connection.

I liked the setlist, and thought it mostly flowed well. Ultraviolet and Mysterious Ways were highlights for me - if I'd heard Desire live, I could have died a happy woman right there and then! And I love Streets live, though this version didn't get to me as much as the Vertigo one did.

My only criticism, and it's minor, was the sound - it sounded a little muddy to me. That could have been where I was though.

The girl who got dragged up on stage didn't know what to do. It was kind of sweet, and nice that she wasn't all over him like a rash.

I enjoyed last night so much that, in spite of being sore and having had very little sleep, I'm thinking of buying a ticket and going again tonight
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Old 12-08-2010, 07:08 PM   #4
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It was an early start and finish to tonight’s show due to a 10:30pm local curfew; Jay Z came on at 6:45pm, U2 at 8:20pm. Apparently ticket sales for Brisbane 2 have been quite slow. So a good performance was necessary at Brisbane 1 tonight to create hype around town to draw more punters in tomorrow.

Most people would accept that supporting a U2 concert is a great opportunity for an artist to impress a whole new audience and create new fans. It hadn’t occurred to me that after 34 years, a U2 concert is also an opportunity for U2 to impress a whole new audience and create new fans. Of all the acts that have supported U2 so far on this tour, Jay Z is the most musically disparate from U2. I’d guess that not many fans of U2 will be big fans of Jay Z, and vice versa. Also, Jay Z has brought many of his own fans into the shows, the highest number of fans recognisably at the gig primarily for the support act.

I was standing beside some Jay Z fans at the rail on the stadium concourse at the back of the first level of seats tonight, and it was great to observe their reactions to the U2 show. It was also great to benefit from their hospitality: one of them offered me a pint of beer out of the blue during Magnificent. And almost right on cue, when Bono asked the band what they liked about Australia before ISHFWILF, Larry described the Aussies’ ability to turn swearing into an art form, as well as their lavish generosity. Would you like a beer ya bastard? Absofuckinlutely!

The Jay Z fans sang along to the big U2 classics like Pride and Elevation, and bopped along to others like Mysterious Ways, but they seemed curiously nonplussed about the Crazy Tonight remix. They asked me who Commander de Winn was after In A Little While, and they also needed reminding of Desmond Tutu’s name before Streets. Streets had one of them applauding enthusiastically above his head after it; the old Streets magic is still there for those seeing it for the first time.

The Suncorp Stadium is a rugby stadium so it’s much narrower than the Etihad Stadium in Melbourne. The atmosphere was far better in Brisbane than in Melbourne, perhaps because of the smaller venue. There were some lovely, loud sing-a-longs for ISHFWILF, the Stand By Me snippet, and when Bono sang Dear Prudence before Streets. The general atmosphere seemed generally louder and more engaged here than Melbourne. (Although I think they’re still some way off the more raucous atmospheres in Europe during the summer.)

A nice subtle touch was having Australia as the first country on the video screen at the start of, um, Miss Sarajevo I think. The image journeys through the southern hemisphere, passing through South Africa and South America, perhaps to tell the crew where they’re heading next.

I surprised myself by reconnecting with some old warhorses tonight. Several fans have slated One and With Or Without You as being tired and lacking in emotion on this tour, but I thought both were stunning tonight. No complaints from me about a lack of passion from the band in those songs last night.

A few minor gripes. Bono changed the lyrics during the first verse of Miss Sarajevo (as he did in Melbourne). I don’t know if he was ad-libbing, but he took a sip of water before the second verse, and then seemed to lose where he was, needing to check his prompt sheet. However he nailed the opera solo spectacularly again, impressing the Jay Z fans. I think most of the audience would prefer to see the girl who’s brought onstage on the video screen during IALW instead of floating astronauts. The biggest complaint about MLK used to be that Bono talked for longer than he sang. He was back on that train tonight when he cut Scarlet very short, taking away some of its impact. North Star was very lovely, although the ending was quite funny and fuzzy.

My favourite moment of the show was during Streets when Bono walked to the back of the stage. Two girls down in the pit were jumping around, singing, and waving at Bono. He quickly leaned towards them and blew them a kiss. The two girls instantly jumped up to hug each other and then bounced off in an excited embrace. Two very happy bunnies!

There was an announcement at the end of the gig that tickets are still available for tomorrow. A big performance was required and delivered. Job done. Great gig, great atmosphere. Let’s see if those tickets shift ...
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Old 12-08-2010, 08:53 PM   #5
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I enjoyed it a lot. Good to see them give North Star a go. I do think the crowd wasn't as much into it. There were no extended oh-oh-oh's after MOS at they were leaving the stage. Plus Scarlet was shortened since nobody sang 'rejoice'.

A few highlights.... Elevation and Vertigo are simply huge on this tour.
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Old 12-10-2010, 08:22 AM   #6
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well here is my third and final post gig review. i'm going to do it in present tense for shits & gigs. again, overly long, but it would be cool if you could read it!

I can't really say how happy I am to be going another U2 gig, in possession of a GA ticket, after my enjoyment of the second Melbourne show was tempered by 80-odd per cent of the people around me who could have just watched the Rose Bowl DVD.

My friends think it's fucking ridiculous that I'm going again, especially interstate. I reason that I wouldn't be going if I didn't have cousins also going. If I had to pay for accomodation I wouldn't be going. But they don't get it. No one does - I can't name anyone I know outside of this forum who is affected by music the way that I am.

Wednesday arrives and I'm feeling very apprehensive about travelling by plane. I mean I know the overwhelming odds are that I will arrive safely, and they say that travelling by plane is much safer than travelling by car. But when you travel by car if you are in an incident you have a chance of survival. If you're on a plane you're fucked.

I park my car in the long-term area of the airport and the second I open the door Hurricane Katrina II hits. I hastily thrown on my poncho from the first Melbourne gig, but as I run from my car to the bus shuttle stop, all the water runs directly onto my gig jeans, completely soaking them. "Fuck," I sigh, annoyed, but not overly caring.

At check-in I am told I selected to use to Web Check-in when I booked the flights, and as I failed to do so four hours before my flight, I'm being slugged a $25 fee to get my boarding pass. And they only take cash or credit. "And if you pay by credit card there's a $6.60 surcharge," the male checker-in-er informs me. I wait for him to stop talking, expecting more consequences to roll off his tongue. I pay the fee - the first of a massive amount of over-zealous fees I will over the coming 48 hours - and continue through to the gate, where I change into my tracky daks and attempt to dry my jeans in one of those wall-mounted, streamlined hand-driers that promise your hands will be dry in 10 seconds. Non-applicable for denim, it should say.

Boarding the flight a Chinese family in front of me missed their flight to Sydney which made me laugh. I've had enough shit luck already, and who doesn't get a kick out of someone else's misfortune from time to time?

You know you're on a budget airline when you have to walk at least half a kilometre to reach the plane, which is much smaller than you think, and then you have to walk out onto the tarmac and climb those welded aluminium stairs to get inside. I'm about to experience something new today though - a flight on which not every seat has been sold. There is no room in the seats but the two next to me are vacant which gives me ample room to lay out my jeans in the hope they'll dry out somewhat and won't smell as much by the time I get to Brisbane.

I've flown probably ten or so times now and I'm still not any less amazed by flying under, through and above clouds. At certain points when I look out it seems as if we're in a white-grey vortex, completely surrounded by cloud. It's very surreal.

The plane arrives in Brisbane without a hitch. Cousin Kaylee and her husband Dave were meant to pick me up but don't have the room, so cousin James - a very likeable bloke who will go out of his way to give you the exact time of day - explains in sufficient detail how to make my way from the airport to Suncorp Stadium by train.

Brisbane's trains are better than ours, I think to myself. Not as noisy, better scenery and less bogans tagging the seats and windows. I arrive at Roma St Station, which has everything you could ever need and more, and get Maccas and read mX (they have it here too!! Even the creepy "I saw a hot girl on the 8:06 train to... coffee?" bits!!) before I figure out how to get to Suncorp. I get second-hand directions and begin the walk.

About halfway through I see a tall man with scruffy, orange facial hair standing against a wall. It's cathal (I've forgotten your name), whom I met in Melbourne. We chat for a bit. I mention how I was disappointed with the crowd in the seated area at the second Melbourne gig, and cathal cottons on. "You're cobl04, the long review!" He's not going tonight. He says I'm going the right way and I hurry on.

I walk down Caxton St which is brimming with activity. A sign for one of the pubs says "U2 and Jay-Z live!" "Surely not," I think, common sense leaving me for a moment. "Come to the Caxton for your pre and post-gig fun", it reads, or something along those lines. Love to, if I were not staying with cousins. In that moment I wish I had more money, I'd definitely fly up solo and just stay in a backpackers or a hostel.

The GA line is on the grass at Suncorp and my goodness gracious me is it green. It hasn't rained in Brisbane since I landed (and it was warm and sunny, so a few hours before that it must have been fine too) but the grass is still waterlogged. James rings me, telling me he's already in the GA line (I'm slightly annoyed) but says to just join the line and "you should be right to walk through". I get in the queue to get a wristband and two girls in front of me haven't had their tickets holepunched so they must go back, the haggard woman doleing out the wristbands says. "But we've been waiting for ages," complains one of the girls. (Five minutes at best). I get my wristband and make my way past hundreds to catch up to James and his wife Carmen in the queue, embarrassed as I'm a nice person by nature. I wasn't comfortable doing it but another bloke was doing the same thing so I just put my head down and follow. One woman holds onto the temporary fencing to subtly hint people that no one else is getting through, but I apologise and keep walking. She mumbles something under her breath. I reach James (wearing a high-vis XXXX shirt) and Carmen, and with them are Camilla, Carmen's sister, and her French boyfriend Pierre. We catch up, discussing among other things the Melbourne gigs, Jay-Z, parking troubles, and "what the hell is that little hat on top of the e called?"

The gates open at 4:30. I choose to check my backpack (five bucks) and then run back to go inside Suncorp. A security man stops me, "where have you come from?" I argue I just had to check my bag, I don't want to rejoin the queue at the back. He lets me through.

I'm immediately impressed by the stadium. It's a rugby ground, so all the seats are much, much closer to the field than at Etihad, and they appear to be on more of a slope to. I figure this will add to the atmosphere.

Danny spots me and comes over, and remains with me for the rest of the show. (In a show of solidarity we both thoroughly enjoy singing every word). People James knows come and go. Jay-Z starts at 6:30, and once again he is brilliant, getting the crowd going once again. My particular highlights from his set are the final part of Encore, where Jay-Z warms the crowd up for U2 with his "they're a small band who got a shot at making it big one day, they in the dressingroom, you gotta be louder than you have so far" line, and then the band explode into the cacophonic brass-led ending. The other highlight is this wicked mash up the band do against Everything in its Right Place, with Jay going, "I think I'm in the right place tonight, make some noise if you in the right place tonight."

During Jay-Z's set a British woman of Subcontinental descent and her attractive friend get me take numerous photos and eventually push in front of me as they can't see because James (who is taller than me) and two of his equally tall mates are in front of them. They are all a head taller than most of the crowd in this area. Once Jay-Z has finished two annoying New Zealand blokes conspire with the two British girls how to get closer to the stage. Among their plans are to strike my cousin in the groin or seduce him. At first it was a conversation that killed time but it got annoying quickly. They try to edge closer to the front but a European man, here with his teenage son, has been eyeing them off the whole time and loses it when they cut in front of him. "NO!" He yells. "He wants to see too!" "Alright, calm down," says New Zealand bloke. But European man is having none of it. "Shut up! Shut up! Shut up!" He repeats furiously as smug New Zealand tries to calm him down. A tough-looking bloke behind European, a man whose presence is surprising given he'd look more at home at an AC/DC or Metallic gig, tries to defuse the situation, using the World Cup as a topic-change. Europe calms down and a near-punchon is averted.

The analogue clock appears, and being a two-gig veteran it's funny to see people's reactions to it. Growing more annoyed by these two New Zealand blokes by the second, I spoil the surprise, telling them it's running fast. "I'd be very surprised if it's running fast," one of them says, and even a check of the time doesn't change their minds.

Someone got the clock wrong because Space Oddity began at about 11:28, robbing the Brisbane crowd of a round of cheers when it hits midnight.

The band come out and let me tell you the first nine songs are absolutely exhilarating. It's a bit hotter here than it was in Melbourne last week, but I'm an absolute ball of sweat by the time UTEOTW is finished. My enjoyment is helped by a group of early-20-ish blokes to mine and Danny's left, who are really into the gig and jumping around and know some of the words to Boots and Magnificent, even. To my right is a young couple, the bloke wearing a backpack. One of the New Zealand blokes tells him to take it off. "What?" asks the man, annoyed he even has to reply. "Take it off man, put it at your feet!" I hate New Zealand blokes now. I mean, it's annoying that this bloke bought his backpack in but you're hardly going to leave it at your feet in GA are you? Idiot.

ISHFWILF is preceded by a lengthy-but-entertaining speech, where Larry at one point says the most impressive quality of Queenslanders is their unique use of profanity, which the crowd loves. Bono gives everyone a say, Adam has nothing prepared and was put on the spot, giving some answer before they hurriedly begin ISHFWILF, which is tremendous, again.

North Star is ho-hum, and for the second gig in a row I am absolutely stunned by the relatively poor reaction to Pride. That not every is up and jumping the second it starts just confuses me. The girl that Bono pulls on stage is overcome with many emotions, and it's fantastic to watch. Somewhere in front of me I think I can hear quadcaster punching the outer rail as IALW is played again. Scarlet is shortened tonight. The British girl of subcontinental descent has succumbed to the heat of GA by this point, and despite all her efforts to get in front of my cousin and his mates has to leave, nearly fainted, with her friend in tow. Shame the two New Zealand blokes didn't follow them. As I suspected, they only knew about five or six songs and didn't get into it all that much.

This being the 30th anniversary of Lennon's death references to him are scattered throughout the show, but most notably when Amazing Grace is replaced by Dear Prudence with Bono on guitar. His vocals are great but he really does suck at playing guitar. Danny comments "that doesn't work!" as the lead-in to Streets, and whilst I really enjoyed the snippet, he is right. The buildup to Streets tonight is shorter and the song as a whole doesn't have the same impact that it usually does. Still awesome though.

We get Ultraviolet (I prefer it, I like it better than HMTM and it works better into WOWY) and the gig closes with MOS (the crowd do not take up the oh oh oh refrain, try as some of us might).

We walk back to the car, about 15 minutes. I see why there's a 10:30pm, three-gigs-a-year restriction on Suncorp; there are a string of houses literally right across the road. Awesome if you're a fan of the artists who play those three gigs, I think to myself.

James, Carmen, Camilla, Pierre and I dissect the show. Carmen agrees that Streets didn't have the same resonance it usually does. Camilla says the gig went for too long and that Bono taking the girl on stage is not all that awesome given his age. We all complain about sore bodies as we have some late-night maccas at Indooroopilly.

We drop Camilla and Pierre off and go back to James and Carmen's. They give me a quick tour, informing me that if I need the toilet I'll have to go downstairs (most Queensland houses have these under-house garage sort of things) as their bathroom is being self-renovated. I fall asleep quickly in the spare room.

Carmen is up early to go to the chiropractor, and James gets me up around 9:30 as he needs to head in to work soon. I'm groggy as all fuck but you do what you gotta do. He shouts me Eggs Benedict at a cafe in Indro, which I've never had before. It's fucking delicious. We talk about America and other stuff. Great catch up.

He then drops me off at a City Cat terminal and goes off to work. I see a bit of Brisbane from the City Cat, a bus on the river, if you like, getting off at Bulimba for some solo fish n chips, which I didn't need and don't finish, before reboarding to go back to North Quay and head to Roma St Station and back to the airport. It's a terrific way to see the city. I chose to sit outside the entire time, with the wind rushing against my face. Wind makes you forget the sun's hot rays, and so my forearms, hands and face get reasonably burnt.

On the plane home I am seated in the Emergency exit on the wing, window seat, which has more leg room but as I discover carries a hell of a lot of burderning responsibility should something go wrong. The girl next to me smells a bit, she is wearing a high-vis shirt and is reading playboy. But my inital suspicions were wrong; she brings up her boyfriend regularly in a conversation the bloke next to her starts by asking about her leg tattoo. Their conversation ebbs and flows, but mostly it's not awkward and after a while it flows well. Yes, I do enjoy people watching.

The plane lands safely in Melbourne once again. I charge my phone when I get home and discover a text from Danny, who has taken a picture with his iphone of a picture on his digital camera of him and Bono. I am struck by vicious anger and jealousy, but am very happy for him, and the look on his face in the photo is one of pure, unadultered, barely restrained joy.

And so my run of gigs has come to and end. I loved them all (though I am slightly annoyed I didn't cry at any of them - I'm always annoyed when I don't cry at things I wish I cried at, but it's probably hard to start crying when you're consciously thinking about it) and am starting to suffer some post-gig blues.

'Til 2014, thanks U2.
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Old 12-10-2010, 07:25 PM   #7
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I fucking love honest, negative reviews hahaha. I especially like reading about other fans acting like dickheads.

The "it was awesome, the most electrifying show ever, I was in heaven, the crowd was magic" reviews get a bit tedious at this point of the tour
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Old 12-10-2010, 07:32 PM   #8
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I fucking love honest, negative reviews hahaha. I especially like reading about other fans acting like dickheads.

The "it was awesome, the most electrifying show ever, I was in heaven, the crowd was magic" reviews get a bit tedious at this point of the tour
You can have honest positive reviews too ...

How are those plans for your ABC of South American shows shaping up?
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Old 12-10-2010, 07:55 PM   #9
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You can have honest positive reviews too ...

How are those plans for your ABC of South American shows shaping up?
You can? Oh. But, I enjoy the more critical ones, they're interestingier.

The presales for Buenos Aires and Sao Paolo were flawless for the foreigners, who got to use a special link (in the case of the otherwise fucked up Sao Paolo presale).

However, the Santiago presale was a disaster. Sat there for four hours since 4am this morning with no luck. I haven't read of anyone inside or outside of Chile getting anything, so far. Might have to sit in the Cathal Section for those gigs

Will you be writing a description of Aussie/Kiwi queue culture at some point? How easy is it to blag tickets there?
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Old 12-10-2010, 08:03 PM   #10
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Might have to sit in the Cathal Section for those gigs
I'll bring two pairs of binoculars then!

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Will you be writing a description of Aussie/Kiwi queue culture at some point? How easy is it to blag tickets there?
There was no queue organisation in Auckland, and there wasn't any need for it either. Melbourne and Brisbane were organised by fans initially and security worked with the fans and used the fans' numbering system. They even provided numbered cards at Brisbane 2 cos a few guys tried (and failed) to skip the queue at Brisbane 1.

It's been fairly easy to get GA tickets here on the days of the show I think. There have been a few floating around, and sometimes remaining unused because the people selling didn't really try very hard to shift their spares.

Shall we try to get more off-topic? How's the weather in San Fran? What are you having for dinner? Did you see that nice Oprah Winfrey is in Australia?
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Old 12-10-2010, 08:09 PM   #11
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i hated San Fransisco's weather when we were there in early July.

i would say it's an honest, positive review. the show was still awesome/electrifying/heaven/magic but yes there were fuckheads in the crowd.
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Old 12-10-2010, 08:28 PM   #12
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i hated San Fransisco's weather when we were there in early July.

i would say it's an honest, positive review. the show was still awesome/electrifying/heaven/magic but yes there were fuckheads in the crowd.
Join the crowd... San Franciscans hate San Francisco weather in July. Most of them get out of town and head north to the warm wine country on the weekends, leaving SF to the unsuspecting tourists traipsing around in shorts and t-shirts freezing their asses off.

I enjoyed the negative parts of your review. Descriptions of half-empty stadiums and obnoxious fans annoying everyone is more interesting to me now than reading the thousandth review of how incredible and flawless everything was.
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Old 12-10-2010, 08:35 PM   #13
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Cathal, will you try crashing the Oprah show on Tuesday?

You'll have to act REALLY EXCITED about everything she says before they let you in, I know you can do it
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Old 12-10-2010, 08:53 PM   #14
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Join the crowd... San Franciscans hate San Francisco weather in July. Most of them get out of town and head north to the warm wine country on the weekends, leaving SF to the unsuspecting tourists traipsing around in shorts and t-shirts freezing their asses off.

I enjoyed the negative parts of your review. Descriptions of half-empty stadiums and obnoxious fans annoying everyone is more interesting to me now than reading the thousandth review of how incredible and flawless everything was.
Glad I'm not crazy! Here it was meant o be summer and I had just about every layer of clothing on I had! And yet Sausalito was nice and sunny.

Oh yeah totally agreed, that's why I write my reviews the way I do. You can read a million reviews about how good this song was but I think they can be boring.

I always think of the line, "the story of a flea can be as good as that of alex the great; it all depends on the execution."
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Old 12-10-2010, 09:28 PM   #15
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Cathal, will you try crashing the Oprah show on Tuesday?

You'll have to act REALLY EXCITED about everything she says before they let you in, I know you can do it
Who's Oprah?
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