November 24, 2010
Ft. Lauderdale, FL 11/6/10
This show was about as unlucky as St. Pete was lucky, but it happens. Besides, the lucky days wouldn't seem nearly as awesome if there weren't a few downers mixed in, right?
The drive to Ft. Lauderdale from St. Pete was an experience in itself. Surviving four years of college with insomnia (which is now more or less cured) left me with the ability to stay awake for long periods of time and get by on minimal amounts of sleep. It never fails that when I'm on the road, everyone hits that point of passing out from exhaustion before I do, and even when I hit it, a 30 min.--1hr nap will usually cure me long enough to get me to the next destination. That being said, I drove the whole way from Ft. Lauderdale to St. Pete with one passenger completely passed out, and one who was in and out of sleep but was only semi-conscious at best. The GPS somehow took us on a two-lane back road the whole way there, and the signs for panther and alligator crossing didn't make me feel very safe.
We finally pulled up to the venue around 6 AM, and I was shocked to realize we were the first ones there. While we had every intention of being early in line the day before, the purpose of driving through the night to Ft. Lauderdale was more of a way to not spend money on a hotel than anything else (FYI--we showered at a friend's house later that morning. No hotel does not equal no shower!). I got a little sleep early that morning, but no more than an hour or two, and I was also having that queasy excited feeling that means I can't eat much. Not a good combination.
The line was pretty laid back and I fully enjoyed meeting a group of teenage guys and girls that were at their first Hanson show. The guys seemed the most excited about being there, and they were absolutely adorable about it. I guess one was #31 in line because I remember hearing him say "Hey guys, little known fact! Hanson's favorite number is 31! Now who wants to trade with me?" No takers, obviously, but I got a kick out of it. They also ran into Taylor at some point in the day and were really excited about getting a picture with him. One of them mentioned wanting to hear Save Me live, and they were definitely the reason it got played later during the show. They seemed really impressed that I was first in line and had a sleeping bag, though I tried to explain that it wasn't anything special and showing up at 6 AM was actually nothing for lots of fans.
There was lots of confusion with the walk line and due to circumstances beyond our control (and fault), we lost our spots at the front. We got in after the walk line was done, and some friends manged to save a spot for me up front, but there wasn't room for both of us and we got split up. The stage and barricade were both pretty high and I was squished, so in retrospect I honestly wish I had gone with Rachel to stand off to the side instead of staying in the front row.
The show was good but I think my mood was killed a little bit by that point, and watching a bra fall from the balcony almost onto Taylor didn't really lift my spirits. The one highlight I recall was Save Me as the encore because the guys we met earlier kept shouting for Hanson to play it throughout the show. At one point, Taylor even shouted back "Hold on, it's not time for that yet," or something to that effect. It was cute, and I was excited to hear it for the first time.
Out by the bus after the show, all 3 guys came out again, and Rachel and I decided to get our inflatable keyboards signed by Taylor in addition to a microphone from our "lead singer" of the 80s Hare Band who had never had the opportunity to meet Hanson or get an autograph (see my Halloween post if that makes no sense). The crowd was much larger and was held back behind a barricade, so the guys were pretty quick to come out, but they were also pretty quick to leave. We could tell Taylor had no clue what we were giving him to sign, but there were so many people around that there wasn't really a chance for us to explain. It makes me wonder how many things they've had shoved at them where they walk away thinking "What the heck was that anyway?" or "Why did they want THAT signed?" Plenty, I'm sure. Zac stayed out the longest again and since it only seemed reasonable to get Taylor to sign the keyboard, I got a picture with him instead. Isaac was too crowded/occupied. I have to say I'm really appreciative of how much they put into trying to please their fans. It only took a few seconds, but he was very nice about it and it's crazy to think just how many people's days (or weeks, or heck, even lives) they make just by taking a moment to smile for a camera.