A Rockin' Weekend...

I can't exactly remember the last time I had a weekend like this, so I'm putting this all down on my blog so I won't forget. Earthly Thunder is the "Band" or group of guys I play Rock Band with. We found out that there is a PlayStation 3 experience bus traveling around the country allowing people to compete for prizes. Third Place is a Rock Band set, Second place is Rock Band and a PS3, and First place is a free flight out to another concert venue to play as the opening band for a side performance plus Rock Band bundles for all members. So we researched a bit and found that we are ranked 2nd in the world at a song they allow - In Bloom by Nirvana. So after a little research we found out that they would be at the Chicago Lollapalooza. So the band made some arrangements, and after a couple free hotels from Kurt's travel points we were in Chicago for the weekend. In addition, since most hotels were booked for the weekend (due to the Lollapalooza) Kurt managed to book a 4 Star room at the Intercontinental on Michigan Ave. Just walking into the Lobby of that place made me feel under-dressed. So total costs to attend Lollapalooza:

Tickets $80x4=$320
Gas $50x4=$200
Valet Parking $50

Total Trip Cost: $570

When we got into the concert they had 8 different stages going simultaneously so we went to see the Ting Tings and Ferras, and then headed over to the PlayStation 3 Rock Band tent. It was then that we heard the bad news. Even though the website said the PS3 Experience bus would be in Chicago, it was actually in New York. They were still hosting a ROCK BAND competition, but not the major one we were looking for. But we figured, while we are here we'd go ahead and enter to see what we can win. They were hosting two competitions, the first was for free backstage passes to see Okkervil River. The second competition was for a free PS3 and game.

The first competition wasn't our smoothest attempt. We were the second band that was called up to compete, and Kurt had major problems with the guitar they gave him. He usually gets 100% on the song we picked, but for some reason the guitar would not hit the notes correctly. We made it through easily enough, but only with 1.3 Million which is well short of the 2 Million we can usually get easily. So we reported to them that the guitar might need some fresh batteries stood back and waited to see if anyone could beat our score. After hanging out for an hour, we were pronounced the winners and won the backstage passes. As soon was that happened, we were approached by a group of people hoping to buy the backstage passes off of us for $200. Since we had never heard of the band, we happily handed over our passes for the cash.

The second competition was a little better, Bryce and I both only missed a few notes and got 99%. Kurt still had some problems with the guitar again, and figured out the problem was that it wouldn't let him down strum. Once he started strumming upward for the rest of the song and didn't have any problems afterward. On our second attempt we got 1.79 Million which also held until the end of the competition. For winning that one, we were awarded a PS3 and a game to be sent to us. We decided to give this one to Kurt since he's the only one without a copy of ROCK BAND of his own. Now he can practice while he's on the road and even play with us remotely if we'd like to practice together. In addition, since we won both competitions pretty easily, the announcer got us VIP passes to the all you can eat and drink areas of the Concert. I checked online, and for a single VIP pass it cost $250 in addition to the normal $80 entrance fee.

So total in Cash in Prizes:

First Competition: 4 Backstage passes won to see Okkervil River. Sold for $200
4 VIP Lollapalooza passes: $250x4=$1000

Second Competition: Won 80GB PS3 and a game worth $450.

Total won in cash and prizes: $1650. The organizer of the event told us they would be doing the same competitions the next day if we were interested in taking home more tickets and another PS3. We unfortunately had to leave the next day, but could have taken those prizes too we think. In addition, we were allowed to see the Rage against the machine concert from club Palooza seats and avoid the massive sea of people crushing each other. The singer had to stop the concert three times to ask people to move back so the people in the front woudn't be smashed against the stage.

To celebrate the great weekend we had, went to China grill down the street to spend some of the cash we earned. It was a very upscale chinese/Asian fusion restaurant and we bought a four person sampler to try their best items on the menu. We were having a blast and I noticed a pretty girl at the table next to ours that looked surprising close to Lindsay Lohan. It was when her mom sat down that I was pretty sure it was her. Bryce, Kurt, and Pete didn't believe me until the waitress came over and asked if we liked having a table next to Lindsay Lohan once she stepped outside for a cigarette. Bryce, Kurt, and Pete all let out a resounding "WHAT?!?!" that probably echoed through the restaurant. I just smiled and got up with Pete's camera to see if I could get some proof. Unfortunately, we were still wearing our band T-shirts from the concert so mine read "I Heart Soccer Moms." I went up to her outside the restaurant and asked if I could have a photo because no one would ever believe me back home. She lit a cigarette and told me maybe a little later. I told her that was okay and wished her a good night, and her girlfriend smiled and just replied "Nice shirt." I laughed and told her thanks and went back in without a photo. So even though I didn't get a picture, I luckily have three other witnesses and a great story.

So total Weekend net worth $1650-$570=$1180 and a ton of amazing stories.

Best Quote: (In Reference to the Ting Tings Concert)
KURT: THAT was so awesome my future BABIES heard it.
BRYCE: When your kids grow older I'm going to tell them that's where they got their twitch from.
KURT: Except that we won't call it a twitch, we'll call it a "Ting"


Jess said…
Glad you had a good weekend! Can I say that I'm terribly jealous that you got to go to Lolla?! Incredibly. Do you know that Wilco was going to be there?! Oh.

And you now know that being a total nerd pays off. Congrats on your Rock Band nerdiness. You really need to hand Andy his ass so he'll stop ragging on my guitar badassedness.
Tiffany said…
Happy New Year!!!!!

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