(Saturday night's Barclays combatants, via)
Being there isn't all it's made out to be. Hell, I live five minutes by bike from the new Barclays Center, the long, tortured construction of which I've pretty much reviled from the beginning, having had dreams of things I could do to developer and Nets co-owner Bruce Ratner if I weren't sane. Assuming I am sane. I have to confess that I once wrote a musical for kids in which the principal villain is a developer named "The Rat" who runs a greenwashing company called God's Green Forests, Inc. So I vowed never to go to that lump of rusting **** on Flatbush, ever, ever, ever. Then came Golden Boy and boxing, and as boxing controls my better judgment in ways that I cannot begin to fathom, ways that are also immune to the various mood-stabilizers I eat, there I went, cap in hand Saturday night.
I had dropped $56 on a ticket in the nosebleed section, but found a dollar on the ground on the way back home on my bike after buying the ticket, lowering the effective price to $55. Eventually I got it down to $50, as you'll soon find out, but if you add the two $10 beers and the frigging $5 nut bar, it was back up to $75. So HERE'S TODAY'S LESSON, GIRLS: if you are going to see a fight live, at a big venue, just ******' spend big -- blow $160 at the very least on your seat, because if you are sitting up in the region where they give you a shield because there's serious risk of being hit by space junk, all you will see are ants dancing in the ring and people walking up and down with trays of hotdogs and chili.
And whaddup with the food? This is Brooklyn, yo; you'd think that rich bastard Ratner would have found a way to charge the peeps a little less for a beer? This is Flatbush Avenue, byotch, not the Great White Way, c'mon you cheap piece of ****. What other reason is there to sit in the rafters if not to get drunk and howl imprecations at Devon Alexander who basically spent 12 rounds playing "Boxing For Microsoft Wii" with Bailey from Miami. Not that I'm the kind of person who yells, "BOOOOO," because that's what all the simians around me were doing. I'm not like them. I just mutter it under my breath and make a note to bring it up with my therapist BECAUSE I'M CIVILIZED.
Yeah, the other thing about sitting in the nosebleed section: you have to deal with really stupid, obnoxious assholes. Yes, the Devon Alexander-Randall Bailey welterweight fight sucked, but to hear a five-year-old screaming that is just weird. Dude, it's WEIRD. The kid was copying a group of pathetic trogs sucking brewskies over on the side. These are the same asshats who will sit and honk their horns when a pregnant woman with leprosy is trying to get into a cab while her leg is falling off. And I will confess right now that I did, indeed, honk at a pregnant woman with leprosy trying to get into a cab, but then I went RIGHT to my therapist and we talked. I even tried to weep a bit, and he upped my dose of Serequel.
Devon fight was boring? Hell, EVERY fight is boring when you need the Mt. Kitts Observatory to see the ring. Wonder what happened to Felix Baumgartner's balloon after he did that space jump? Check section 250 in Barclays. Those seats are on the roof. They let you look at the ring through the air conditioner vents.
Luckily I brought binoculars. Which leads to another point: the people in the nosebleed section aren't rich, obviously, and the reason they aren't is because they are stupid, and the reason I know that is because they didn't bring binoculars. I did bring them, you get it? What does that make me? It makes me smart. I must be smart because I brought binoculars. I must also be gay because when one of the ring card girls sat down next to me to wash down two Klonipin with a Coor's Light, I missed an opportunity to take a couple of them, too (they don't conflict with the other **** I'm on) and then go shag her behind the kosher-food stand before the drugs kicked in. Ok, maybe in my own mind I missed the opportunity, but still. I went right home after the fight and jerked off thinking about it, which proves I'm not gay.
But what I'm saying: So, when, during the Dmitriy Salita fight, the big screen went dead (oh, except for between rounds when they were just FINE showing ads for Corona and DeWalt tools, as if we hadn't seen them like 50 times already) I was able to see the fight, while the hoi polloi became violent. (Ok, I didn't jerk off, afterwards, if you are still wondering about that, but I pondered the idea.)
So, anyway, by the time the Alexander vs. Bailey fight was over, I was depressed, pissed and not drunk enough, so I went out, dropped another tenner on a beer, using the totally no-fee ATM machine (thanks Rat), and then charged my phone with the free chargers (thanks METRO PCS, who gets a brand mention here, and why not, your name is only on every frigging seat in the joint. Like, "Oh yeah, I'm going straight to a crappy Metro PCS store to buy a ****** phone because YOUR name was on the back of my seat." That's called branding). While my phone was charging, I gazed out the window at the Guitar Center across the street, in another Rat shack called Atlantic Mall. I thought, "Here's my opportunity to buy something else I don't ******* need, for a guitar I don't play." I ran out the back door of the place, because I knew I could buy something useless at Guitar Center and then bike home right in time to see the final three fights on TV, where I could actually see what's happening in the ring.
So I ran out the back door of the joint, where I was accosted by a scalper. I ended up selling him my seat for a measly $5 bucks (enough for a few guitar picks) thus lowering my effective ticket price to $50, which is also what it costs to see my guitar teacher, so I cancelled that, and will only take half a lesson next week, because of the $25 I spent on beer and that goddamned nut bar… and… but wait, there's the prescription for Ativan. How much will that cost me? ****! I should have just copped some Klonipin from the ring girl. You can't win, yo.