Last year, I famously went to 10 different concerts. I enjoyed each and every one of them, but by the end of the year, I have to admit that I was pretty exhausted. I love the thrill of going to a live show, be it an arena show or a smaller show in a general admission venue. It would have been different if I hadn’t had to travel for almost all of the shows – only a few were in Des Moines. As J.D. Salinger said, you can’t go on abusing the body, year in, year out – regardless of what you may think. And by the end of the year, I felt like my body had been through the wringer as far as traveling to concerts went.
Because of that – and some other things that I’ll get into – I’m seriously cutting back on concerts. It’s going to take something AMAZING to get me to go to more than the one that I have lined up for March. Honestly, my bucket list is getting pretty short. The only two bonafide bucket list artists that remain are Suzanne Vega and Pam Tillis, and I am pretty sure that Suzanne Vega will not be touring in 2017. Anybody else is mostly a “would be fun” type thing. Not that I’m opposed to that – quite the contrary – but sometimes you just have to say no.
The fact that I bought at $2300 computer in a couple of weeks ago is probably the biggest reason that I will be saying no to more concerts this year. It’s hard to justify that AND the price of some of the shows. I really did need a new computer, my old one was a late 2011 model iMac and was barely limping along. The good thing was that it never gave me a single day’s worth of trouble in the 5 years that I had it, which is more than I can say for some of my PCs. The instant that I purchased it, I knew that meant fewer concerts.
I’m also really trying to pay down debt. I refinanced two different credit cards with Sofi this year and got it into one monthly payment that is lower interest and $200 less per month than I was paying before. I refinanced the house last fall to save another $200 per month. I can’t really justify putting concert tickets on credit cards that I have just paid off. It would be different if I had actually paid them off and not just refinanced them to a better interest rate and lower monthly payment. I still have to pay them off and the last damn thing I need is to pay Sofi AND the credit card companies. That defeats the whole purpose. My student loans may be going away at the end of the year thanks to the Public Service Loan Forgiveness program, which will be nice, and I plan to put all that money on Sofi or the car to pay those down faster.
But perhaps the most important reason I want to cut back on concerts is I want to see people this year, not concerts. I would love to take a trip somewhere to see far flung friends – NYC or Washington, D.C.or Denver or Ottawa – I have friends in all these places that I haven’t seen in a long time and would love to see again.
However, I couldn’t say no to this “could be amazing, could be a train wreck” combination in Minneapolis in March. It’s combining going to a concert with seeing people as there are five of us going to this show. Given Ms. Carey’s New Year’s Eve meltdown in Times Square, it could be interesting. Still, I’m really looking forward to it, even though I have to drive to goddamn Minneapolis.