Thursday, October 20, 2005

Arena Schmarena



The new Charlotte Bobcats Arena opens today. The sculptures are interesting. Looks a little like they were snatched from an infant. But they're colorful. The building looks kinda cool, if squat (as arenas typically are), nestled among the big banking towers. Its construction, however, interrupted the neatly crosshatched streets in the vicinity,



bulging as it does
across what was a straight avenue
(5th near Caldwell), like an aneurysm in a city vein.



The word is that tickets aren't selling too well, though. Pity. The majority of us round here expressly told local government we didn't want it. Didn't want to pay for it. We got it anyway for $265 million, paid for with local tourism taxes.

So, the Stones rock into town tomorrow night to get things rolling. Tickets run from $60 to $350. And U2 play there in November, too, though they "sold out" within an hour. I say "sold out" because you can apparently still buy tix online through alternate venues, if you're willing to pay through the nose for them. (I found some here starting, starting at $230 and going for up to $863 a pop.) I'm thinking scalpers have figured out a way to hack Ticketmaster or similar sites, so they can buy stax of tix as soon as they're released. Clearly, the Web has encouraged a new breed of ├╝ber scalper. The scalperati.

What's the common thread through all this, of course? Money, money, money.

'Cos that's how we play it here in the Queen City.

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