LeBron James Witness History Manila Tour: Unabridged Edition

LeBron James Witness History

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On the Travails of Getting LeBron James Witness History Manila Tickets

I’m not a hardcore LeBron James fan.

Maybe a fan. Not a hardcore one. I leave that to my brother-in-law.

That said, when a local blog announced that the 4-time NBA MVP was coming to Manila, I found myself scouring any means possible to get myself invited.

Visiting Nike Park BGC last July 15, I found people in corporate suits and Louis Vuitton bags doing what I planned to do: befriend an employee or two and try to squeeze out any information on the event and how to get tickets without dying making pila on the 17th. No luck there.

Next, I planned to camp outside the store the dawn of Wednesday, but come Tuesday morning a student of mine showed an Instagram of the insane line coalescing outside Nike Park BGC. “Sir, you better run to BGC right now!” she advised. That wasn’t funny.

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I was calling it quits, but my brother-in-law insisted that we try our luck. “Who knows? Maybe because of the rain, people will leave the line and we could get tickets?” As an autographist (viz., a person who collects signed memorabilia), I know based from experience that fans do not think that way. “No, they’re drenched already. They might as well commit to their behavior and gut it out till 12 noon.” Then again, I’m not the LeBron James fan. He is.

Just when all hope seems lost, Alas!, the powers-that-be made a way for us to secure passes to the event. As soon as I was able to confirm our attendance, I called up my brother-in-law and told him of the good news. Now, he’s a stoic dude, so I didn’t expect him to scream and shout in jubilation. But I could tell he was excited, maybe just a little less excited than when my cute pamangkins were born.

Speaking of cute pamangkins, here is the oldest sporting a Miami jersey and destroying my lion pencil case.

Speaking of cute pamangkins, here is the oldest sporting a Miami jersey and destroying my lion pencil case.

I don’t know what it is about the LeBron James Witness History Manila Tour and rain. Before my last class, the sun was up and no dark clouds could be spotted. When I stepped out of the class, it was raining cats and dogs. Eff it! We’re braving this one! I thought as I stepped into the car and my brother-in-law stepped on the gas to make it to the 3:30 PM cut-off.

Reaching the venue at 3:15, a lot of people were still outside. The media was lined up at the right side. GMA’s Mark Zambrano greeted me as we passed each other. “Where will you stay?” I asked. “Courtside, bro,” he replied. Darn it! I only have Lower Box tickets! I thought as we bid farewell and entered the Arena. Why are there so many people outside? Scalpers, maybe? Maybe a friend promised them tickets as a sick joke or as payback for making sulot of their crushes? My (not-so-)random thoughts briefly halted as I saw Alvin Patrimonio and his daughter posing for pictures with fans at the lobby. There were other celebrities, too, but I didn’t pay much attention as we hurriedly rode the escalator to the second floor and found our seats.


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