Monday, March 10, 2008

This friend of mine, I’ll call him Jose, has an uncanny ability to take advantage of opportunities that come his way. He’s just one of those people who can talk their way into anything. Superhuman charm. He’d kill as a salesman, a talent agent, a PR man, you see what I mean. As you might guess, he saves his best tactics for subjects of a female persuasion, but his formidable powers are useful in other arenas as well. A classic example took place a couple of years ago when he was down in Austin for ACL. A highly-anticipated TVOTR gig at Emo’s was sold-out, with the crowd overflowing into the street. My wife and I had tickets, and for whatever reason, Jose and his girlfriend did not. No ticket, no entry. They’d have to head back to the hotel or go wander 6th Street. Nope...instead, by the time we get into Emo’s, there sits Jose and his girlfriend relaxing, having a Corona, waiting for the band to start. My personality-type is basically the polar opposite of my friend Jose, so for me, this is nothing short of amazing to behold. Without breaking a sweat, Jose used his superpowers to cripple some unsuspecting bouncer, talking his way into a sold-out event, free of charge, for two people!

Fastforward to this week. Jose and I are both headed down to SXSW on Wednesday. Neither of us have wristbands or badges. You see where I’m going with this. My plan is to go the day-party route, like I did last year. It’s a fantastic and affordable way to go. You see dozens of great bands for next to nothing. I was even planning to abandon downtown Austin once the sun had set. I briefly tested the waters last year and there wasn’t a chance in hell for someone (like me) to get into the showcase events without a badge, wristband, or waiting in line for hours counting on a mircale that there’d be remaining room for a lowly ticket buyer. My friend Jose has other ideas. My friend Jose believes he can wield his powers yet again to gain entry into exclusive events. I’ve seen him in action but I’m still skeptical. If he IS able to get his way in, he sure as shit won’t be able to do it without a bribe. But he’s a determined man. Already, Jose has shamelessly tried to obtain VIP access into just about every blog-sponsored showcase, by basically loitering on their front doorstep. Not a single bite. Jose needs to be there in person, face to face with his target. That is when he's at full strength.

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