Last night I went to the Lakers game and thanks to my friend Dimitrios Papadogonas, the Director of Marketing for Virgin America (whose logo dresses every courtside seat in alternating white and red) we didn’t just go to the game – we watched from the owners box and hung out in the Chairman’s Lounge during halftime and after the game.
So far, I’ve seen Jack Nicholson, David Beckham and David Arquette at every game I’ve ever been to. Well, I’ve only been to two so far, but…
Jack, that’s Nicholson, has been a season ticket holder since 1970 with courtside season tickets for the past 25 years – and I was told that courtside tickets start at $2300. That’s per seat, per game!!! AND, she said courtside at the Lakers is one place being a celebrity does NOT get you a discount. After nearly 40 years, she told me that even Jack, who the team considers family more than a fan (because he nearly Never misses a game) still pays for his seat. Although, she did add that corporations own many of the season tickets and people like Beckham, who sits in the Nike seats, probably don’t pay.
In the Chairman’s Lounge during halftime it was so crowded that after I walked in my friend was told it was at capacity (the fire marshall was standing at the door) and he’d have to wait until someone exited to enter. The next person to leave the room was a make-up-less Kate Hudson who said she was just running to the ladies room. She was told if it was still full she’d have to wait to get back in upon her return. Kate grimaced and headed off. I’m not sure she made it back.
Meanwhile, Jack Nicholson made his way from his seat to the lounge with so much focus that I don’t think he has any peripheral vision, Beckham hung out near the back of the room with Marc Anthony and Jonah Hill and the girl he was with must have stayed in their seats because I didn’t see them – or Jack Black, until they came on the jumbotron.
I love being a Lakers fan. I haven’t really had a team since a kid who used to look up to Hakeem Olajuwon (literally) at Rockets games in Houston. I’m glad my too long displaced sports enthusiasm has found a home again – and what a good home and family it is!