That Usher Ain't Nothing But a Crab...

...Educated nope, stupid yep

As you can see by Ack's post below, we took in the Beastie Boys latest "pageant" at the Air Canada Centre last night. Being a die-hard Beastie fan, Ack had seen them live a few times, but it was the first time I'd seen the pageantry for myself. It was excellent. The boys are still in fine form and gave a very energetic performance. They have some fanatical fans who would be hyped even if the BBoys mailed it in, but to their credit it seems they're certainly still into performing. So we enjoyed the show, despite the attempt by some of the Air Canada Centre's ushers to spoil it for us.

For starters, getting to our seats was like getting access to the Pentagon's war room or the main vault in Fort Knox. We were in section 8, but of course we couldn't get down through section 8. We needed to find a floor entrance and ending up going to the luxury boxes before getting down to the floor. Once we were on the floor we needed 5 ushers to guide us runway style all the way down the floor and to point out our exact seats with the flashlight. So after all that we figured we were in our proper seats.

But no. After being seated through Bob Moore's dog show and a few minutes into Talib's set, Francine the super-usher shows up to cryptically tell us we aren't in the right seats. Apparently they've mislabeled the seats and also printed the wrong number on the tickets. I explain that I'm in the seat number on my ticket, but she isn't having it. So she gets us and a dude looking like Droopy Dog and his girlfriend to move down a seat. And then we have to move down another seat. But we know it's not over, someone's going to be looking for those seats we moved into. Sure enough, another usher brings 2 people down after Talib's set and tries to seat them where Droopy Dog is sitting. Droopy is not having it. Francine comes back and soon enough we've got a 5 usher donnybrook going. Two or three of them then explain in succession that where we're sitting is a "penalty bench" and the seat numbers can change. This has apparently blown their collective minds. They bring in Tony, their Soprano-styled usher to demand our tickets and say "23 AND 24, YOU SIT OVER THERE". Thanks Tone, we knew that. I'm having some fun with the ushers, cracking wise and making them uncomfortable before we inevitably move back to our seats. But Droopy's yelling at them like crazy and making a scene; attracting the serious ushers with the jackets and the walkies. Ack is very nervous by this point, thinking we might be getting ejected like the yutz who couldn't master his high and collapsed twice right in front of us.

It was fine though, we moved down and enjoyed a fine show. Mixmaster Mike was excellent in backing up the Beasties. These days most DJ's in a big-time hip hop show are just hype men behind turntables and don't offer much. But MMM was busy with the precise cuts you'd expect from a former DMC champion. He also worked in some heavy beats, at one point even prompting MCA to ask him to bring back Fabolous' "Breathe" so he could kick his verse over it. I enjoyed the whole show. The musical breaks with the Kim Mitchell (f*** Dirty Dancing!) inspired patio lanterns were excellent. They rocked out at the end with Sabotage and I could feel the bass rattling my kidney's for five minutes after they finished. All in all I enjoyed my Beastie's experience, so if it is their last tour as Ack fears, at least they went out on top.

Before I go, I have some advice for Francine the usher in section 108 with the cool nose-ring and the snazzy bowl cut. When I inquired politely if that was the first concert you'd ever worked and you replied "maybe it is", I realized perhaps you could use some help. Here's a tip, next time someone is in the section and seat that is printed on their ticket, they're probably in the right seat. No need to thank me, your competence is my reward.

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