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The 7 Stages Of Grief: Buying Phish Tickets Edition

Tickets for Phish‘s Fall Tour went on sale this morning, and once again were sold out before most of you could even hit the refresh button. We here at Live for Live Music feel your pain, and want to help you deal with the unfortunate reality of trying to see one of the most popular bands in the world. Here are some guidelines for the stages of grief you’ll be feeling over the next few days.

1.  Shock and Denial
“YOU’RE F@#$ING KIDDING ME!!!  THERE IS NO WAY THEY’RE SOLD OUT ALREADY!!!  It’s only been a minute!!!  How is this even possible?!!!”

The first stage is generally marked by a numb, disconnected feeling.  Many of you will continue refreshing your browsers for hours on end, refusing to believe the tickets are gone.  If a friend or loved one is in this stage, approach them gently.  They are very likely to be unstable this early in the recovery process.

2.  Pain and Guilt
“OMIGOD!  I’M NOT GONNA BE THERE!  EVERYONE I KNOW IS GOING BUT ME!  THIS IS ALL MY FAULT!  I SHOULD HAVE UPGRADED MY INTERNET!  I SHOULDA TURNED OFF ALL THE APPLIANCES IN MY HOUSE THAT HAVE COMPUTERS!”


At this stage, Phans are feeling deep feelings of sorrow, and blaming themselves for their bad luck.  Try to remind them that thanks to scamming internet ticket buyers and the auto buying ticket robots they never really had a chance.

3. Anger and Bargaining
“THAT’S IT!  I GIVE UP!  IT’S LIKE THEY DON’T EVEN CARE ABOUT THEIR FANS!  Wait…maybe I should check Stub Hub!  1500 HUNDRED DOLLARS FOR FLOOR SEATS ON NEW YEARS EVE?  ARE YOU F#$%ING KIDDING ME?  Wait…maybe…I mean…I don’t really NEED to pay all my bills this month.  They wait three months before they turn off your electricity right?”


At this stage, as a friend your job is to keep your Phriends from making potentially life ruining decisions.  Any ideas they have about burning down Ticketmaster or selling off vital organs must be stopped gently but firmly.

4.  Depression, Reflection and Loneliness
“I just don’t know how I can go on like this.  I mean…is it time to just stop seeing live shows at all?  Why do I do this to myself?  Is my love of Phish worth this pain?  I’m going to be the only one in the world not at these shows.”


This is a critical point in the recovery process.  The Phan will be at their most vulnerable, and it’s important to keep them away from sharp objects and other Phriends upbeat social media posts about scoring their own ticket.  Try to keep them from anything drastic, like burning all their ticket stubs, joining cults or locking themselves away in their basements.

5.  The Upward Turn
“Maybe…maybe this isn’t so bad…”


Pay close attention to your Phriends for signs of their pain lessening…once they begin to level off the opportunity to really help with their recovery has begun!

6.  Reconstruction
“Maybe I should turn off my computer and start showering and going outside again.”


As Phans start to re-embrace their regular societal roles, it’s important to be as encouraging as possible, particularly when it comes to the grooming process.  Take your Phriends for walks.  Help them reconnect with their love ones after their tedious days of constant online searching for tickets.

7.  Acceptance and Hope
“Well, this certainly isn’t the end of the world.  I’m sure I’ll get to see them again in the future.  Wait…WHAT’S THIS?!!!  THEY’RE GONNA PLAY THEIR OWN FESTIVAL ON THE MOON?!  TICKETS GO ON SALE TOMORROW MORNING?!!  MAYBE IF I SET UP TEN COMPUTERS AND STAY UP ALL NIGHT THEN THIS TIME IT’LL BE DIFFERENT!”


Sometimes all you can do is walk away…