Saturday, March 13, 2010
"Excuse me?" you say, in complete and utter befuddlement.
"You can't buy this milk as an individual item," says the checker with a smug little smirk on her face, "it's our new policy. Lots of people are buying milk these days, so in order to get this half-gallon, you'll also have to buy a can of Spam, two boxes of Twinkies, a pack of Juicy Fruit gum, a twelve-pack of Diet Dr. Pepper, and three pounds of ground beef."
You politely tell the checker what she can do with the half gallon of milk, and storm out of the Piggly Wiggly more frustrated than a three-legged dog with jock itch.
Or how about this? It's June, and you've decided to take your family on a nice vacation to Orlando, Florida to spend a joyous week throwing away your hard-earned money at the Disney World Resorts. The wife is excited, your kids have nominated you for Awesomely Cool Dad of the Century, and you're feeling pretty damn good about life as we know it. But when you visit your local travel agent to purchase your plane tickets, you receive a dastardly surprise. It seems that the airlines are unwilling to sell you plane tickets to Orlando. That is, unless you also book flights to Cleveland, Boise, Austin, Boston, and Flint.
"I'm sorry," explains the travel agent, "but since Orlando is such a popular tourist destination, we've decided that in order to purchase these tickets, you have to book additional flights as well. Have a nice day!"
Pretty ridiculous scenarios, right? You're probably asking yourself, "Okay, what's his point? Grocery stores don't make anyone buy Spam, and airlines certainly aren't going to force anyone to fly to Cleveland. What's going on here, really?"
Well, let me tell you what in the name of Tommy Friggin' Lasorda is going on here, really.
This season, as part of Major League Baseball's Interleague schedule, my beloved New York Yankees will be flying out here to Los Angeles to spend a relaxing weekend beating the crap out of the Dodgers. Knowing this, last Christmas my kids bought me four Dodger Stadium ticket vouchers, coupons that can be exchanged for actual tickets once they go on sale. The kids' intent, of course, was for me to use these vouchers to get tickets for one of the Yankee games.
So the tickets go on sale, and I log on to Dodgers.com to purchase four seats at the Dodgers-Yankees game on June 25. Do you know what I found out? If you guessed "the Dodgers have blacked out that entire weekend so these tickets may not be purchased with ticket vouchers," you are correct. Isn't that awesome?
But wait. The fun is just beginning.
I notice that there's a special banner on the Dodgers website, advertising the series with the Yankees. The slogan is "L.A. vs. N.Y. Watch the Dodgers Receive a Horsehide Enema" or something like that. I click on the banner, figuring that this will take me to the page where I can buy tickets. But that is not the case at all. It takes me to a page with the following message:
THE ONLY WAY TO GET TICKETS FOR THE YANKEES SERIES IS TO BUY A 28, 21, or 14-GAME DODGERS MINI-PLAN
Yeah, that's right, if I want to see the Yankees, I have to buy tickets for at least thirteen other Dodgers games, with the lowest possible option being $126 per mini-plan. For that price, you get seats that are located in El Segundo which, for those of you unfamiliar with So Cal geography, is pretty Goddamn far from Dodger Stadium.
Knowing me, I'll probably end up biting the bullet and become the Dodgers' little bitch, either buying tickets at a ridiculously marked up scalper's rate or getting a mini-plan and selling off the non-Yankee games.
Anyone interested in two seats in El Segundo for the Dodgers and Pirates?