Friday, October 14, 2011

Foreigner VIP

It all started on Tuesday Sept. 20th with a face book post about extra tickets available for the Journey, Foreigner, Night Ranger Concert. I waffled but then called just to see how many they had and how much they were. I ended up getting 5 tickets for me and my 4 best girls- Christie, Michelle, Shannon, and Nicki.
On Thursday, we all were giddy with excitement! And why not with the great bands that were performing?

On the way down to the Erwin Center, we were all joking about the "Magic Man." You see, a local radio station sends out the "Magic Man" with a pair of front row tickets to change out with your tickets if you are the first person to ask him, "Are you the Magic Man?" They dared me to ask the parking attendant. I did. They were laughing so loudly I didn't even hear what he said back.

We walk to the Erwin Center from the parking garage laughing and joking all the way there. When we get to where we can see the doors, we see there was a line waiting for the doors to open. As we are walking to get in line, I notice a man sitting on the ground with his back against the building that backs up to the Erwin Center. He had a rad bag that said, "Foreigner" on it, and he was quietly watching people walk by. I said, half seriously, "I bet that is the Magic Man." But we all kept walking. When we got to the line, I said again, "I think he might really be the Magic Man." Michelle, said, "I'll go ask him," and off she marched. I watched her go over to him and start talking. The man stood up and reached into his bag..... I started running over yelling, "Is it him? Is it him?" Michelle put something around her neck as I reached them. It was a Foreigner VIP Reception Badge!!! I notice he has another one in his hand. As another lady, who came running up behind me, reached towards the man's hand, I swooped in and grabbed the 2nd VIP Badge. (She didn't stand a chance! Ha!)
We asked the guy if he had 3 more passes so all 5 of us could go but he did not. As it turned out, he was NOT the Magic Man! He was a guy who had a bunch of VIP passes and 2 friends not show up to claim them. He was so incredibly nice to give them to us!

Michelle and I waved to the other girls, said "See ya, bitches," and excitedly went to the VIP Reception! I have to be honest and tell you that at this point I thought I was getting to meet Journey, too. I was so excited (having memories and pictures of meeting Journey live and in person in 1983) that I was literally shaking! It was in talking to the people at our table that we realized this was all about Foreigner. And that to be at this VIP Reception, which was about 25 to 30 people in total, you had to have won the badges or paid big bucks! Lucky us! Still, the shaking continued- but a white wine spritzer helped with that! :-)

Michelle and I posed in front of the backdrop to text to the other girls. You can imagine the hateful (but funny) texts we got back!!!
It wasn't long before the band came in! Michelle and I lined up to meet and get photos with Foreigner (taken by the band photographer and available for us to access for our own memories)!! We clapped and cheered as they entered the room! So exciting!! Michelle went first-
I joined them!
Then I got my own moment with the band!
I shook all their hands and told them how fabulous it was to meet them!
It really was incredible!
Close up of lead singer Kelly Hansen (in the middle), guitarist Tom Gimbel (to Kelly's right) and guitarist Jeff Pilson (to Kelly's left)!As the next person moved in to have their moment, we were handed a goodie bag. Inside was an autographed picture of the band, a hotel key chain, a copy of their newest CD "Acoustique," and a congratulations note.
Once everyone at the reception had their meet and greet moment, I asked the band if they would pose together for all of us with cell phones. They gladly did.
Then I asked them to give us a rock and roll pose.
From there, the band mingled a few minutes with the VIP's. I grabbed the drummer, Mark Schulman, and had Michelle take our pic together. Aren't we cute? I was so giddy it was ridiculous!!
Then Michelle switched places with me for her pic with him.
I seized the one on one opportunity with Mark to tell him about a comment my nephew Phillip made about their show the night before in San Antonio. I repeated to Mark, " My nephew saw you last night in San Antonio. He said you stole the show." Mark said, "Who stole the show?" and pointed to the band members. I said, "Foreigner stole the show from the other bands." Mark said, "That is good to hear!"

The band was whisked away then to get back stage for their part in the concert. Michelle and I ran to the ladies room and started screaming and jumping around! High as a kite does not begin to describe how we were feeling after all that excitement! But we gathered ourselves and headed into the Erwin Center to meet up with the rest of the girls, who may or may not be talking to us!! :-)

We stopped for a daiquiri and then found our seats. Night Ranger was playing as we sat down. I got to hear, "Sister Christian" and "Don't Tell Me You Love Me." Alright!
The girls were still smiling so we were okay! Ha!
Then Foreigner took the stage and the night of singing, drinking, and dancing began! We maybe sat down for two songs the rest of the night! Maybe!
Christie has a super star crush on Kelly Hansen. Every time he was shown on the big screen she would go nuts! (We all went a little nuts, actually! lol) It was funny!
We got to dance and sing along to songs like, "Juke Box Hero," "Dirty White Boy," "Say You Will," "Urgent," and "Double Vision," to name a few!

Luckily, even though we went down in my van, Michelle stopped drinking after 2 and named herself the designated driver. Good thing because the rest of us were kicking them back pretty hard! Last to take the stage was Journey. Steve Perry, the original lead singer is no longer with the band but his replacement, Arnel Pineda, was really good! My favorite Jonathon Cain is still on piano. I wish I could have met him in person (again) that night!!
Oh, yes! We were having too much fun! The girl on the far right was the girl in the seat in front of me. We got friendly with her and her boyfriend.
They did so many of their hits!.... "Stoned in Love," " Lights," "Loving Touching Squeezing," "Don't Stop Believing," "Faithfully," and the one that made me cry, right there in front of my girls and the entire audience, "Open Arms." :::sniffle:::

The show ended with a confetti filled bang!

Leaving, just outside of the Erwin Center, we paused for some photos!
You would think the adventure stopped there, but you would be wrong! We ended up at the Pflugerville Taco Cabana to grab some grub. There we met a young, bad boy, biker named Josh. I invited him to our table and we chatted him up. Our reward was a peek at a lawn mowing man tattoo that he had in a "not necessarily appropriate location for strangers" to be peeking! It was awesome! I wish I could recant the conversation that took place as well, but I need to maintain the sparkling reputation of myself and the girls! Ha!

Around 1:30am we rolled into the neighborhood. What a fantastic, amazing, exciting, girl's night we had! It totally rocked! In fact, our slogan for the night will go down in history as "Buzzed bitches and bikers!" Oh, yes, WE DID!

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