NIN atlantic city

wednesday i left for atlantic city around 11:30. weather was great, sunny, smooth sailing. i had intended to go to asbury park first, before heading to atlantic city but i forgot how early the sun sets in november – 5pm and it was dark and i still wasn’t in NJ. the drive got worse and worse, so did the weather. started raining when i finally reached nj, traffic up the ass, rain causing accidents. since it was dark i decided to skip asbury. so i had to alter my driving directions which wasn’t hard, but that meant i ended up taking a really retarded long route to AC…all in all the drive took 9 fucking hours. i got to Bally’s at quarter to 9, the weather at that point was a hurricane and i thought my car was going to roll from the wind. then i faced a huge check in line, because apparently it was a conference weekend, which explained why the hotels were all expensive too. finally checked in, stashed my stuff, and promtply lost 100$ on pai gow. then to bed.

the show was at the house of blues, in showboat casino. headed over there around 11:30 and there were only 20 or so people hanging out near the house of blues music hall entrance. with a nice sign that said we weren’t allowed to line up until 4. so people were wandering in and out, i had an awful hot dog for lunch, and won $50 on pai gow. i went back up stairs where security said we couldn’t hang out even tho we weren’t in line, just sitting around randomly. eventually he said he didn’t know why we couldn’t stay there, because we weren’t causing any trouble so he left and we all stayed. i got bored sitting by myself and figured i’d go eat again before lining up, so i went to the house of blues restaurant and sat at the bar. when i left, i saw josh sitting by himself getting dinner. for a very split second i thought about going over to tell him we’d miss him when he left the tour, but he was there for dinner and i didn’t want to bother him. i decided to walk around and see what the weather was like outside, since in the morning it was still crap. walking toward the main entrance i saw a big afro and realized justin was outside on the phone. i didn’t go outside with the intention to talk to him, so i didn’t approach him. i was just standing there and i suddenly realized that trent was getting out of a cab directly in front of me. holy shit. i had my phone out texting adr2 and cassie about justin, and i thought i should take a picture, only my hands were shaking and i didn’t know how to use my phone anymore LOL. i was trying really hard to pretend i didn’t notice him, and i think he was trying pretty hard to pretend he didn’t see me. i was going to say hi but then this big blond guy i never saw before got out of the cab too, definitely looked at me and my nin sweat shirt, and i decided not to say anything. rob sheridan got out after the blond guy, looked at me, glimmer of recognition so i smiled at him…rock stars taking cabs, and fitting 3 grown men in the back seat. the casino couldn’t even send one of their cars to pick them up?!? wtf. so the 3 of them went in, and i followed (inside, not followed them, i was done checking the weather) and they disappeared quickly. i went back up stairs to HOB and everyone was gone. security was back and said we all got kicked out and had to wait til 4 to come back. so back downstairs to find where everyone was loitering (because now we were interfering with casino business instead of just hiding upstairs where no players were walking around), and decided to take a walk again. got IDed going onto the casino floor lol. so i’m walking and someone is walking toward me…really looks like robin, but he was wearing a funny hat…almost an elf or robin hood hat where you expect a big feather to be sticking out. so i’m staring at him…it’s robin…no it’s not…yes it is. no it’s not. he’s staring at me while i’m deciding that it’s definitely robin, so i say hi. so i’ve now seen everyone except Ali LOL

4pm comes and we all go back upstairs, and line up. i never got a “number” from riot’s crew so i just got in line with these people i remember being in line at the last philly show, since they got there around the same time as i did. then security comes and asks where our tickets are. well we can’t pick them up til 5…well you can’t be in line if you don’t have a ticket. so once again we are not allowed to line up and go back to sitting around, at least we can stay upstairs. we also can’t get our tickets til much later now, i think it ended up being around 6:30 before “replacement brandi” came out with our tickets. FINALLY into line, doors were at 8pm.

get into the venue, at rail, in front of robin. when adr2 and bliss are not with me i get the most retarded people around me. this girl who was not waiting out all day suddenly shows up between me and this other girl, and introduces herself, asks our names. and grabs onto the rail. and asks us to move and we say no. so she decides to elbow the fuck out of us and gets on rail. wtf. she introduces herself again, asks my name. she’s annoying as hell dancing to the vamp music, yelling random things, she must be on drugs. squirming around to get more rail space, while i hold onto the barrier brace. the people on her other side must have ended up moving cuz i sure didn’t and she eventually got full body on the rail. introduced herself again, asked my name. WTF! then during nin’s set she was constantly yelling “michael” at the stage…yes we all know trent’s first name is michael, but clearly he’s 40however old and doesn’t go by michael, why would he respond if he could even hear you to begin with. stfu!

so health was the opener. oh dear god. they were awful. and so loud, i forgot my earplugs and was instantly deaf. i just have no words, they were just terrible. loud noise, maybe one part that could possibly be a song, but just terrible. people started booing. i don’t boo but i have no problem looking bored and in pain. a half hour couldn’t come fast enough. in the meantime i was so cold. just absolutely freezing, there was refrigerator air blowing right on me. every time the crowd pushed a little bit, i wished they’d keep pushing because the people were warm. i knew that once the show started i’d want to be cold, but it was so so bad. i was shivering and it was giving me a headache.

nin came on around 10:15 and opened with “love is not enough” with a drum program intro that was new, and made me not recognize what it was. robin playing it sounded great, i just started smiling. followed by “terrible lie” it was looking like one of the with teeth shows, and it pretty much was, with 4 slip songs. none of the songs were in even remotely the same approximate place as other shows, so it made it interesting, but there were no real surprises. the main one…while FINALLY in line…peter murphy walked by. hmm that’s odd. so of course we all speculated that maybe he was here to play a song with nin. this girl from russia, acid polly, was hoping it wasn’t “reptile” because while she liked peter murphy she didn’t think his voice fit the song. so mid set, there is some activity on stage, and a guy walks out with a sheet of paper and puts it on the stage. it’s peter murphy. and the song is “reptile” LOL he didn’t quite know the words so he had a cheat sheet, but it went really well. i agree that his voice doesn’t suit the song (just like i don’t think bowie’s voice suited it back in 1995 *sacreligious*) but it was still really really cool. his mannerisms for the song were awesome, alot of homoerotic peter/trent during the choruses, and in the end it was pretty great. acid polly was at rail next to me and at the end she was like, well that wasn’t so bad haha.

so the show goes on, and midway through “gave up” i’m not paying attention to what’s going on in front of me, watching the stage, and trent’s head of security, who i think is named John, walks up to me touches my arm, and puts a tambourine in my hand. LOL so for no apparent reason i have another tambourine. cassie helped come up with a few theories as to why…trent or rob told him to, because i didn’t bug them when they were getting out of the cab. or robin…at one point in the show he pointed at me, assuming he remembered me from earlier. or i’m leaning to it was just “John”, that he saw i was having a good time – which is his 3rd rule of the show when he is going through the rules before doors – and decided to “reward me”. he was standing in front of me for the first half of the show, so it’s possible. at the time when he gave it to me he wasn’t though, he came from the other side of the stage with it. so there’s the story, not as exciting as trent throwing it right to me, but it’s cool 🙂

trent was very happy through the show, smiling alot, laughing at things. he smiled about something at robin after robin’s whispering part of “god given”, and after peter murphy left the stage something made him smile. he gave a little speech which he admitted was so he could catch his breath after “closer”…he said there were superfans in the crowd, and that he discovered the internet where people bitch about every little thing…leading to him saying how he’s been fucking up the lyrics to closer for so many years he doesn’t remember what they are supposed to be, and asks if any of us know what the middle part lyrics really are. he threw the mic into the crowd and a kid tells him it’s “through all the forests, above the trees”, so trent repeats it and says he’ll try to remember it for next time. they go into “discipline” and in the mid “quiet” part trent starts that closer part, which actually fit pretty well. he introduced the band towards the end, and announced it was robin’s birthday the next day. he thanked peter murphy and said that he was probably hanging upside down somewhere LOL. in the end he announced that shows like that were pretty cool and that they should do more of them YES PLEASE.

they played 2 hours, no encore.
Love Is Not Enough
Terrible Lie
Letting You
March of the Pigs
The Frail
The Wretched
The Collector
Reptile ( with peter murphy)
The Beginning of The End (i thought of S and V because once again, when josh started, it still sounded like My Sharona)
Ghosts 31
Head Down
Gave Up
The Line Begins To Blur
God Given
Down In It
Starfuckers Inc.
The Hand That Feeds
Head Like A Hole the ets thread from the show there is: “There was some epic fighting over a tambourine which security ended up confiscating.” which makes me wonder if that’s what “John” gave me…it was the opposite side of the stage, and he threw it during “head down” which was before “gave up”…hmmm indeed. ok that’s the story i’m going with now 🙂

the show was good. not the best ever. they sounded great, the venue has great sound, and trent’s voice was on. it was “stripped down” as they advertised in the sense that they had absolutely no production elements from any of the recent tours…just standard house of blues lighting. but when i saw “stripped down” i was sort of expecting acoustic, or semi acoustic, which it very much wasn’t. we got no surprise songs, which is also sorta disappointing, but then again i’m spoiled. i got to see all these great “rare” songs over in europe, and i want to see them again here (i still don’t understand why they don’t play them EVER in the states). i will take a productionless club show any day, because that lack of production allows them to change the setlist up…i think all 9 shows in europe had different setlists (at least in song order if not in songs), and all 5 club shows in 05 that adr2 and i went to had different setlists…all the production, while cool, locks them into a certain number of songs. i like the production, it’s been great this tour, really really fantastic, but clubs are pretty fucking great too. doing a mix where they play a few arenas, and a club here and there (like the rolling stones did a few years ago) would be really cool. even in the same city…like toronto…air canada one night, kool haus another. the show was not all that rough, it really rarely is when you’re not dead center, but i walked away with some bruised ribs and the usual bruised hip bones. no big deal. that’s what makes it fun!!

I’m finally in a nin crowd picture….

in front of robin, green shirt. i don’t know who’s arm is next to me because i wasn’t wearing any bracelets but it so looks like my arm lol. you can see the huge security to the right of me in the photo, about to stand on the barrier. he blocked my view most of the show, jerk. and then “john” is behind the short security guard against the stage. i really hope his name is actually john.

left the show protecting my tambourine, had no where to hide it like last time, and no friends to act as body guards (when i was getting my sweatshirt from coat check, holding the tambourine, this kid says “you took a tambourine to a nin show?”…wtf were you AT ALL paying attention? so i said, no they gave it to me and he just looks so confused, so he asks if i played it at all…wtf. no, i did not, i was too busy trying to make sure no one at rail saw john give it to me so they couldn’t plan to steal it later hahah.) sat down and called adr2 to update on the show, and called cassie from my car in the ramp where it was quiet. driving back to bally’s i stopped at 7-11 for food, and then missed the turn for bally’s ramp…turned around and on the way back this car is driving funny, and pulls over to the curb at a weird angle, and i pass him. then i realize…there is a girl walking up to the car. and i look in the mirror again and she’s gone. i just saw someone pick up a prostitute. that’s a first. i’ve seen prostitutes and escorts, but always on “dates” and not getting picked up off the corner LOL. it was just like TV LOL

so i left AC at 10:30 with my mission to check out asbury park. weather was crap for a 3rd day, a light mist. i get to asbury and it’s awful. immediately going toward the beach i see the half demolished old Metropolitian Hotel… 🙁 the cool entrance is gone, and only a small part remains. keep driving and i see the carousel house and casino are still standing, which is good because i had heard that they were gone too. the palace is just a lot now, and there are horrible new build condos right next to the lot. i park at the carousel house and realize…the door is open. omg it’s being used! the medusas (the wind women haha) which leighanne had said were removed for safe keeping are all back, and the doors are all green gates, one open. there were some tables inside and it seemed like it was being used to sell fall stuff – mums and pumpkins etc, and being cleaned out. i took a few pics inside, which has white walls now, and has been fixed up it seems. a guy went in and said hi, but i didn’t bother him by asking him about it. then to the casino…holy shit, it’s open too. sorta…it’s actually half gone. the section attached to the carousel house, which said CASINO on it, has been saved and re opened so you can continue you’re way on the boardwalk through the building…there are big I-beams bracing it, and some of the original decorations are still there…but the rest of the building, that continued on toward the beach and was most in danger of falling down is now gone. they only saved the facade (inside the walkway), and the outside is covered in metal. sorta sad, but still really good that they saved and are using some of it! it looked like the power plant was being worked on too, but it looked the same as years ago when lei and i went. i walked down the boardwalk in the rain, which i don’t think has new builds, but they were redone and house a number of cafes and stores – high end home decor/furniture stores…because people go to the beach and buy furniture?!? i just don’t get it. there were some useful places like a glass blowing place, pottery place, water/summer gear etc. i just don’t get the furniture and expensive clothing stores on a beach. i started getting worried that Madame Marie’s was gone but i finally found it, tho she’s retired or dead..her granddaughter now does the psychic readings. kept going towards the convention center, which looks good, and back to the car. the wonder bar is on ocean ave, and it is painted institutional green, with a bumper car and tillie painted on it in memory of the palace. it was cool to see tillie still survives in asbury. it’s a real good reproduction too. beyond that is a construction area for high end condos…only it was just a skeleton of a first floor and didn’t seem to have been worked on in a while, perhaps it’ll end up like the one they finally imploded a few years ago. maybe it was the weather but i just find asbury to be the saddest place on earth. it had such a vibrant history, so many historic places that have been lost, the bruce springsteen connection…and now this silly modern attempt to revitalize it. i hope it works, but it’s ruined the charm of the place. ah well.

started for back home which was a better, quicker ride this time, the 7 or so hours that it was supposed to be from asbury to home. i don’t think it was the same way lei and i went last time though. i did find the Land of Make Belief again, where we tried to sell the sign in the dark fog hahaha.

long post, but sorry, not cutting it 😛

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