15 July 2010
It’s not everyday that you can see a musical legend in concert.
In fact it’s not ANY day that you can see the Swedish hit machine ABBA perform live.
They haven’t played together in nearly 25 years.
But don’t tell that to the advertisement in my local newspaper.
The other day I saw an ad that said in big bold letters:
ABBA, The Concert
Followed by the words, “Arrival from Sweden, Live in Concert.”
Tickets are $27 (plus service charges).
At NO place on the ad does it mention that it’s not ABBA you would be spending $27 (plus service charges) on, it would be Arrival, the ABBA tribute band.
That’s where my journalistic blood-sniffing technique kicked in.
I hunted down the official website for Arrival, where it said, “this is the closest to ABBA you’ll ever get”
it’s a “stunning look-alike show they put on.”
Put on is right.
The tribute band, formed in 1996, has done close to 1000 shows in more than 25 countries.
And I thought those little zhu-zhu pets were stealing money.
False advertisement is a fantastic thing, especially if you can get away with it.
Like the hundreds of times I have won the Irish Lottery.
Or the FREE CRUISE, if I call that number.
Or the car dealers with the once-in-a-lifetime deal.
Make sure you look really close at the small print. The truth is, they only have one car at that “special” price and amazingly, it’s been sold by the time you get there.
And then there’s the big fat liar who said that finding a penny and picking it up would give you luck all day long.
Let me tell you, that’s a bunch of bovine stool.
On my way into Starbucks this morning for by my overpriced venti sugar free vanilla half-caff Americano with half water and half steamed soy, I noticed Abraham Lincoln staring at me.
So I picked up my little copper friend, instantly believing that today would be the day.
Call off the military Millie, good luck is on the way.
And not a minute too soon.
Unless you call NOT spilling my Americano on my shirt good luck, nuthin out of the ordinary happened today.
And let me tell you, I’m getting really tired of nuthin happening.
Nuthin has been the daily special on my menu for the last 20 months.
Sure, some good things have happened.
Like getting to know my wife and kids again.
And a couple of freelance jobs to help pay for getting to know my wife and kids again.
But as for something good happening in my career, that’s just not happening.
And picking up a penny is not going to change that.
For the most part, I’ve been able to deal the heartbreak of a broken career as well as possible, but I’m running out of optimism.
And so are the people around me.
My mom came over for dinner last night and even she was low on positive reinforcement.
And when your mom is running out of nice things to say, it’s time to call in the National Guard.
My mother’s faith in my career is so beaten up that when I dropped her off at her assisted living facility last night, she said, “I’ll be praying for you.”
Then she crossed her fingers.
Wow. This is getting serious.
But wait there’s more.
This morning I had my daily call from one of my closest friends. He’s become a loyal reader of the blog and I thank him for that.
I think he calls to make sure I’m still standing every morning, but he hides it by talking about sports and the blog.
He could tell pretty quickly today that my gas tank of spirit was running on empty.
So, like any good friend, he made the quick transition into a pep talk.
He offered his usual sincere support, but today at 9:42am, he threw in a “everything happens for a reason”, free of charge.
Twenty months ago, the “everything happens for a reason” was a beautiful place for me to rest my hope and my shoes.
Twenty months later, it makes me want to throw up.
What are these “things” that are supposed to be happening?
And for what reason?
But wait there’s more.
This afternoon I was cruising through Sir Bacon’s Facebook page, searching for something good to happen, when a new reader of the blog, someone I have never met, opened up a chat line.
We exchanged nice words for a few lines, then as we were bidding adieu, at 4:04pm, he said, “it’s happening for a reason.”
Are you kidding me?
Two different people, worlds apart and separated by six hours and 22 minutes, both dropped the “happening for a reason” on me.
What is the reason that people don’t return my emails?
What is the reason I have applied for dozens of jobs with no response?
What is the reason I worked my rear-end off for 25 years so that a business transaction could make my services no longer needed?
This all makes about as much sense to me as spending $27 (plus service charges) on a karaoke band.