GateHouse — As it is the New Year and a time for rebirth, rededication, refueling, rebranding and at least three weeks of semi-consistent exercise which will gradually taper off and then eventually plummet to a zero-baseline in what will almost certainly become a fiesta of couch-sloughing and chocolate frosted donuts by early February, I would like to make several Important Proclamations for my little columns in the year 2010:
- No more hidden messages; reading each first letter down vertically will no longer reveal coded instructions to any of the secret societies to which I once belonged. My apologies, Order of the Sphinx Bullfinch, but you’re just going to have to figure out some other way to control Parliament.
- I officially retire the belief that if you say something funny to me in an email or IM, I both own and thought of it, which I am doing entirely of my own volition and not because of any threatened legal action or anything, so just stop looking at me like that, all judge-y.
- No more puns about cows. Nobody likes them, and they tend to put readers in a horrible moooood.
- No more embellishing, outlandishing, stretching, fabricating, exaggerating or embiggening things to make for “better stories” or “dramatic tension” or “because the things that actually happen to me are not remotely funny.” And this very instant by promising to you, the reader who is killing time waiting for something to load in the other tab or for the dryer to beep already, that I know this much is true:
You may remember 2009, although you would be forgiven for not very much wanting to, as a year that saw great innovations in the worlds of science, including a blanket which has arm holes in it. But whichever soaking rich idiot invented the Snuggie will have to step aside in 2010 and count his money in cozy peace, because this year will likely bring us the First-Ever Band To Perform In Space, and I will pause to let your mustaches stop burning after I tell you that the first band to perform in the vast, cold expanses of that incomprehensible void will be, and I think this goes without saying, Spandau Ballet.
Spandau Ballet is the band that you are thinking right now is actually A Flock Of Seagulls, or possibly Falco, or maybe, depending on how saucy you’re feeling, T’Pau. Unless you are in Spandau Ballet (and if you are can you sign this ticket stub for me?), you probably do not remember Spandau Ballet, although Spandau Ballet can take solace in knowing that of all the things people do not remember about the 1980s, they are the only forgotten thing to be currently scheduled to perform in space, and if I were currently in Spandau Ballet, which I can’t imagine would be that hard to achieve, I would be responding to pinhead humor columnists with a cleverly delivered jibe like, “We’re sorry, we can’t hear you and your hipster ranting, because sound does not travel into space, where we are going.”
Anyway, Spandau Ballet is going into space thanks to the noted mogul, billionaire and very orange person Richard Branson, who has signed them to perform on his long-in-coming commercial spacecraft, SpaceShip Two. Branson’s space-tourism company, Virgin Galactic, is set to begin trying to catapult the planet’s absurdly rich into periods of quizzically brief orbit this year, although they will have to do some rock/paper/scissors for the thrill because the craft has room for just eight people: two pilots, Spandau Ballet, and what will almost certainly be the most uncomfortable Eighth Wheel ever.
It is safe to say that this concert will differ pretty dramatically from whatever Spandau Ballet’s last show was, probably first in that it won’t take place at a rib festival. For instance, due to the current parameters of commercial space travel, the concert will only last five minutes, or three times as long as the average hip-hop show. Due to the cost of commercial space travel, the concert and flight carries a price tag of around $200,000, or three times the price of the average Rolling Stones ticket. Due to the tiny nature of Spandau Ballet’s catalog, they will probably perform “True,” their biggest hit from the 1980s, and the one that most people know as “the song that goes ah-ah-ah-aaaaaaah-ahh.” And due to my very narrow interest in that era of music, I will absolutely not be paying that kind of money for a floating ’80s artist until someone sends up the guy who sang “Electric Avenue.”