Bag of Joshua Tree Randomness

As you would expect, we had a blast at the U2 concert. Below is a recollection of the evening with some of the more decent pictures I was able to snap.

Traffic wasn’t too bad driving to Arlington from GeedingManor. We arrived at the stadium close to 6:00 PM, an hour before the Lumineers were scheduled to perform. As we walked to the venue a BoN reader spotted me and was kind enough to introduce himself and his family and asked for a picture. Funny thing, but I ended up taking pictures with about ten different people that evening. It was a combination of BoN readers (it was a pleasure meeting all of you) and people who got a kick out of my “Bono is my pastor” shirt. After about the third photo, DaughterGeeding asked her mother if I was “kinda famous” to which the answer was a sound no. But then after about the eighth time, she ask her mother if she was telling the truth.

Before we entered, we made sure to take a quick family picture. A security guard actually asked if we’d like to take a photo as he saw us trying to take a selfie. I teased WifeGeeding that in this picture it looked like she was trying to honk or grope my man-boob.

On the way to the entrance, WifeGeeding snapped this picture. At first glance, I really liked how I look. My gut is hidden, my shoulders look broad, veins on my arms are popping out, my calf-to-ankle-ration doesn’t look bad, but then I see the back of my head and realized I’ve got a bad visible bald pattern. It’s not like you get to look at the back of your head often, but I know realize my days of growing hair are now over.

I was surprised when we arrived at the entrance there wasn’t a wait, no line at all. The security personnel was exceptionally friendly, even taking the time to kid around with our children. After security, we were greeted by an attendant who swiped my credit card which I used to purchase the tickets and four tickets were printed out. That was cool, now we have a souvenir and I didn’t have to rely on my mobile device to remember our seat location. The process took about 15-seconds longer than the traditional process I’m used to when I present my ticket and it’s scanned. But then again, I already had my credit card out and ready to present, I’m sure many people had to fumble through their wallets to get theirs.

Knowing AT&T Stadium provides free Wi-Fi, I looked for a connection right away only to find several U2 connections.

Lines for merchandise was crazy long. I had no interest since I could order all the same stuff online. It’s not like I’m in high school and need to buy a shirt to wear on the next school day to show off. Also, as a fan club member, I have a 20% off voucher I could use.

Our seats weren’t the best, but we were in, nonetheless. I really regretted the location of the seats I chose. U2’s last two tours, 360 and Innocence + Experience Tour, configured their stages so there wasn’t really a stage front, the center of the arena was the stage and that was my thinking buying the tickets. But our location didn’t allow us to appreciate the massive video screens which I hear made the visual aspect quite unique. Also, I’ve heard the acoustics of AT&T were horrible. I didn’t experience that at the 360 tour since I was next to the stage, but it was certainly noticeable and even acknowledged by the Dallas Morning News in their review of the concert, “Though some echoes could be heard bouncing around the cavernous mega-stadium, the band was in fine form.” That review also stated the attendance was estimated to be around 90,000.

The Lumineers were supposed to take the stage at 7:00 PM, but they were 35-minutes late. Here are some pics of their performance.

Now that the Lumineers were finished, it was time to get ready for U2.

I thought I’d try to capture a bit of the vibe or atmospheres before the start of the show in this video, which is evident at the end as you can see DaughterGeeding’s excitement and her two thumbs up. That goofy look on her face cracks me up.

You may have noticed the earplugs the kids are wearing. Yeah, it deadens sound and takes away from the experience a bit, but we didn’t want to damage their young little ears. It was a great seven dollar investment.

The background music stops and the houselights change, not to a spotlight or anything, as you can see below. The whole stadium is lit except for the stage on the island. Larry walk out to take his place on the drumset on the island. I love that Larry is usually the first out. It’s like a nod of appreciate for the one who founded the band. Not to mention, he’s always stuck in the back. on the drums. The crowd loudly cheers, Larry waves, and electricity builds. A moment or two later, out walks Adam (sans kimono) and The Edge.

I loved the anticipation and wasn’t sure how it would all start. No music was playing but you could hear the roar of the crowd. Then, all of a sudden, with the very first strike of the drum, which was a loud, sharp, commanding, and surprising, all the lights turn off and spotlights shine on all four members as Bono appears (pic below). With that first strike, all fans instantly knew “Sunday Bloody Sunday” was playing. I’m reading too much into this, but, every night when I put DaughterGeeding to bed, I play U2 lullaby music. The first song on that CD is “Sunday Bloody Sunday”. And here she is at her very first concert, her first U2 concert, and the first song is the same as the first song she hears every night before she falls asleep. Ah, I’m certain this was all written in the stars.

  

DaughterGeeding’s reaction was everything I’d hope and expect and more. It was more important for me to watch her as the concert started than to watch those four Irish boys. WifeGeeding caught the moment right as U2 started to play and when DaughterGeeding hugged me and thanked me immediately for bringing her to the concert.

 

Trying to get a little fancy with my camera, here’s one tiltshift photo I snapped.

It was really neat watching The Edge play both the keyboard and the guitar in one song, switch from one to the other effortlessly.

DaughterGeeding made it through the first eight songs until she fell asleep. BoyGeeding only made it through the first three, which caused WifeGeeding to be stuck to her seat for most of the concert. But it was still worth the price of admission to experience it with them.

Below are some of my better pics of the concert, and I have commentary on a few of them. You’ll see I focused on Bono and The Edge a lot.

     

I get a kick out this older woman in front.

  

In my mind, Edge is looking right at me.

The band held two encores. The second included a snippet from “Waltz Across Texas“. The last song on the printed set list is “The Little Things That Give You Away,” but the band drops that and ends the show with “I Will Follow.”

A bit of a bummer not to hear the new song at all“The last song on the printed set list is “The Little Things That Give You Away,” but the band drops that and ends the show with “I Will Follow.”

As we left the stadium, we noticed the Cowboys or Jerry Jones helicopter take off. I don’t know if it was Jerry or one of his sons, but I did see the Cowboys luxury bus parked next to the facility. To be honest, I was surprised to those two things. Also, the stadium was selling drinks that came in cups with Romo’s image on them and his likeness and jersey could still be seen.

I’m not surprised Bono visited former President George W. Bush at his Crawford ranch. I’m just surprised he did it the same day as the show. I’m not a rock star and perhaps performing is old hat to him, but visiting Crawford and then performing for three hours seems like a lot. But what a great picture. Bono with that goofy grin, W in that Texas shirt, both look as happy as one can be out with great Texas landscape behind them. Considering the things Bono said when Bush’s father was president, I have to give W a lot of credit for not holding on to the past and give Bono some credit to understand even though it was very rockstar, it wasn’t an effective way to build on long term goals.

Here’s Bono arriving at AT&T Stadium.

Below is just another picture I found on Twitter before the start of the concert, which I thought was neat.  And finally, here are most of the rest of the pictures I took.

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Angry pedestrian fail

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How BoyGeeding Gets Ready For His First U2 Concert

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Long lines this morning for the U2 concert

From what I’m reading on Twitter there’s some frustration with the process of general admission wristbands.

Picture Source

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Bag of Randomness for Friday, May 26, 2017

  • DaughterGeeding drew that picture for me last night. I think she’s excited about tonight’s concert. But being the stickler I am, she left out a band member, and I can’t figure out if she snubbed The Edge or Adam.
  • DaughterGeeding is unique, it’s why I love her. Yesterday she asked if I could print out the lyrics to “Where The Streets Have No Name” and “I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” so she could follow the words to the music. For the heck of it, I listened to the songs with her and asked her what lyrics stood out, what did she think they meant, and what was the song about. It’s really neat hearing her interpretation of things, things I never considered, and since it’s from the perspective of an innocent child it added an element of naiveté and wholeheartedness. For instance, when she heard “I want to tear down the walls” her first thought was of all the talk about the U.S. and Mexican border.  It was so neat having a “deep” or thoughtful conversation with her. I try to take in these special moments bonding with my kiddos.
  • A few pictures of U2 in Houston. Bono hung out with law enforcement and Adam and Larry ate at Whataburger. Like Adam, I too often wear a kimono on my late night runs to Whataburger.

  • Last week I received an email from AT&T Stadium about purchasing a parking voucher for tonight’s concert. Usually, I avoid paying the stadium and will pay and park at one of the cheaper privately owned lots. However, since the kids will be in two, I broke down and bout the $50 voucher. But the weird thing is, the only way to use them is by a mobile device, I can’t print it out or anything. I’m so used to printing things out as a backup it freaks me out a bit.
    • You will not receive paper tickets for this event. Login to our website or app on your smartphone to view your mobile ticket.
      • I tried to take a screen capture of the ticket on my phone but the TicketMaster app has a setting which prevents doing such a thing on their app.
  • I rarely attend any events, so this may be common, but I thought it was cool of AT&T Stadium to send me a link with a lot of details about the event and their policy. (PDF) For instance, it states cameras with a lens longer than three inches won’t be allowed as well as any flags on a stick.
  • Armchair PR Consultant: I’d advise Ariana Grande to either visit the victims of the bombing in the hospital, send some sort of gift basket, or make a large donation to a charity on their behalf. Since she’s back home in Florida, I’d probably have her make a contribution to a local hospital.
  • Texas approves feral hog hunting by hot air balloon
  • At His Own Wake, Celebrating Life and the Gift of Death – Tormented by an incurable disease, John Shields knew that dying openly and without fear could be his legacy if his doctor, friends, and family helped him.
  • Why Google Is Suddenly Obsessed With Your Photos – The next great Google product offers a window into a company reshaping itself around images, artificial intelligence, and even more of your personal data
  • I’m not saying I’m for or against the removal of Confederate statues, but I will say this is a striking image of a protest about removing one in Virginia. (Source)
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Play it safe, let them have the car

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I don’t know the context but it’s funny

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Bear Charging Down A Hunter

I can’t tell if there’s cursing, he’s a bit of a mumbler.

I am so happy after this confrontation with a black bear during our spring hunt. No wounds except a bruised elbow and ego where the bear threw me down. Genuinely happy that this was a non fatal or tragic outcome. Proving that the black bear is a wild and unpredictable animal. Again so happy with the outcome.

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Bag of Randomness for Thursday, May 25, 2017

  • That eight-foot bear was on sale for under $100 and the shipping was free, I couldn’t resist. Heck, it was fun taking it out of the vacuumed sealed packaging and watching it “grow”. One unexpected joy was watching BoyGeeding place the rectangle box upright and using it as a phone booth as Superman would. But the joy of the evening was watching them haul it upstairs, working together, and then fighting whose room it would go in.
  • At some point in my life, the word “router” no longer meant a woodworking tool but network computer device.
  • I’m certain if the government kept secrets about aliens or extraterrestrial contact, President Trump would have accidentally let it slip by now.
  • The last time U2 was in town was back in October 2009. I paid a premium to be next to the stage and WifeGeeding couldn’t attend because FetusGeeding was causing her massive morning sickness. All my friends already had tickets and it was a scramble to find someone to take. I ended up contacting a loyal BoN reader who was living in Lubbock, a person I only met one time prior. I recall him emailing me with a very open mind asking what was it I liked so much about the band and if I could provide him with a “U2 Starter Kit” of songs. Hoping to “convert” him, I burned him a CD and he and his wife became hooked. As a pastor, he loved all the biblical imagery and the sincerity of the testimony told in their lyrics. Since I “won” him over, I didn’t allow him to pay me anything for the tickets. He was also the first BoN reader to know WifeGeeding was expecting.
  • I had to dig in the closet to find my official U2 concert shirt which says “Bono is my pastor.” It still fits, and thankfully, it’s a bit looser. I’ve worn it to two other U2 concerts. Funny to think the last time they came to town and the last time I wore it, I wasn’t a father had more hair and weight.
  • YouTube – Baking and Eating Carol’s Beet & Acorn Cookies
  • New York Times Op-Ed – Monica Lewinsky: Roger Ailes’s Dream Was My Nightmare
  • Jalopnik – A Design Engineer Explains Exactly Why Your Car Is So Boring
    • Sometimes I’ll look at a car and wonder how could a company make something so blah or ugly, and wonder who the heck would buy that thing. I mean, I know Walter White drove a Pontiac Aztek all, but sheesh.
  • What I Learned Talking People Out Of Suicide
  • The huge plot points teased in Game of Thrones’ season 7 trailer
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Boxing Practice

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U2 Performances on Kimmel

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Bag of Randomness for Wednesday, May 24, 2017

  • The steroid epidural and physical therapy hasn’t really helped lessen my back pain, but the doc wants to do another steroid epidural. The physical therapy has been more challenging than I thought. The stretches and exercises I do daily take just under an hour to complete.
  • I love the respect the smoking BBQ community has for one another.
  • I met someone whose last name is “Dilda”. I’m sure that’s often misspelled and mispronounced, and here I was thinking “Greeding” was annoying and insulting.
  • I keep forgetting to post this and a reader was kind enough to send the story to me, but a rundown “haunted” house in my hometown of Mineral Wells is for sale for $125,000. And in case you were wondering, that’s not my childhood home, I grew up on the southside.
  • I think our governor is attempting to protect Christian pastors, but this would also affect all Texas religious leaders – Gov. Greg Abbott has signed into law legislation shielding pastors’ sermons from government subpoena power.
    • “Texas law now will be your strength and your sword and your shield,” Abbott said, invoking Bible verse as he addressed the 11 a.m. service at Grace Church. “You will be shielded by any effort by any other government official in any other part of the state of Texas from having subpoenas to try to pry into what you’re doing here in your churches.”
  • Cabinet member praises absence of protest in a country where protests are illegal
  • Billy Murray will be playing in the celebrity pro-am at Colonial today and Tony Romo will make his CBS Sports debut at the event on Sunday.
  • CBS11 had a good segment on local road rage yesterday and stated two of three areas are near me, I35 in Lewisville and 121/114 in Grapevine. The number one cause of road rage . . . merging traffic. I guess I’ve never thought about it before, but that makes sense.
  • U2 was on Kimmel last night. It was basically a U2 centered show, almost similar to the Conan show about a decade ago.
    • Longtime fans would appreciate him bringing up The Dalton Brothers. Back in 19878 Los Lobos was supposed to open up for them but couldn’t for some reason. For kicks, the band decided to open up for themselves but in disguise as a country western band and made up songs on the whim.
    • Kimmel opening jokes from what I remember:
      • You remember U2, those jerks that tried to give us a free album a couple of years ago.
      • We need to get Adam and Larry some nicknames because it’s really not fair.
      • I went to see U2 at the Rose Bowl on Sunday night. It was an incredible show, Bono fed the entire stadium with a single loaf of bread.
    • Their first performance was pretty neat with choir members hidden throughout the audience and then chiming in to contribute.
  • BoyGeeding and DogGeedingII playing ball
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