Sunday, February 19, 2017
Ticketshock [+ CORRECTION]
All right, Confessors, let's get some reports from Ticketstock, and photos if you have them. (Send to ThePlainsman1310@gmail.com)
To my surprise, The Girl said she was game for some Ticketstock.
In the past, I have usually departed work early on Friday to attend. I would arrive at the Irving Convention Center maybe four-ish, and the crowds would already be good and the booths lined up in several rows and along the walls.
This time . . .
We arrived around 6:30. Paid the $5.00 for parking. (That's not extortionate for parking, but The Ticket should say something about that in their promotions since they stress that the event is free. Maybe that's why they always stress it's "free to enter." It's not free to arrive, but free to walk in the door.)
I will confess, Confessors, that I was rather startled. I had prepared The Girl for a milling, noisy, T-fueled crowd.
But the crowd was very sparse; not a "crowd" at all. There was a group of people sitting on the ground in front of the stage listening to (and enjoying) the round table, but the surrounding floor in the convention hall was pretty empty.
And there was a lot of floor to be seen. The number of vendors with displays there was way down from the last time I was at a Friday Ticketstock presentation. No need to place them in rows, there weren't enough of them to make up rows.
Just a strange vibe. Despite the rich possibilities for TicketChick costuming from the Eighties theme, they appeared to be wearing the same outfits they'd worn a few years before when the theme was supposedly "Mardi Gras" (although I recall zero promotion for that at the time). The three I encountered a couple of times seemed a little unsure of what they were supposed to be doing.
And in the past, they had moved bleachers up to an area in front of the stage to accommodate people who wanted to listen to the show. On Friday, the bleachers sat unused against a far wall and people who wanted to listen (you had to be directly in line with the speakers -- a little off to the side and all you could hear was Corby's keening howler-monkey larf) had to sit on the ground or stand.
Now I'm thinking a couple of things here in possible mitigation:
(1) Maybe vendors figure Saturday is the big day so in these uncertain times they don't pop for two days, and there were a lot more on Saturday. What was the vendor/booth situation like on Saturday?
(2) Maybe people were holding off until Saturday because they'd moved the TimeWasters' performance. All the headliners were for Saturday. I heard Junior say Saturday morning that they were expecting the biggest crowd in the history of TicketStock that day, but when I tuned in around 5 that afternoon I thought I picked up one of the Roundtablers making a sideways reference to a thin crowd, and there was little crowd noise being picked up. How was the Saturday crowd?
(3) Maybe the bleachers were really only for the TimeWasters' performance in the past and so had not been put in place on Friday, and they got moved up on Saturday.
I applaud The Ticket's community outreach with its Guys Nights Out (Guys Night Outs?) and Ticketstock and all the rest. I've enjoyed them all in the past. But this one seemed a little denatured, a little dispirited and frankly, a little half-assed.
But give me your experience, and set me straight. I'm thinking Friday was an outlier and that things must have turned around on Saturday.
The Girl was puzzled.
ERROR ERROR ERROR: Just heard Jake and Sean, whose reportage I trust, talking about how the crowds were amazing Friday night and also Saturday, bigger on Friday than Saturday, even. Biggest Ticketstock ever. So I must have gone at a quiet time, sample size too small.
Your Source for Quality Ticket Journalism regrets its misleading analysis.
FURTHER: To see how way wrong I was, see NTexas's sister's photos in the cut-and-paste link in the first comment. Thanks much for that. Man, I shoulda hung on.