Selling A Kidney For Madonna Tickets

by Jackie Linder Olson
Originally Published: 

My one-sided love affair with Madonna started young and hit hard. Like many of you, my first dance routine was performed to “Lucky Star,” and while critics said it wouldn’t last, my eternal love and devotion remains as strong as my prepubescent idolizing. In fact, it’s been constant through the years.

Rebel Heart is easily Madonna’s best album, and lately the teasers of her tour prep have sent me into a spiral trying to figure out how to manage the hefty ticket price, close to $1,000 a seat. Pole dancing nuns? That has to be for her song “Holy Water.” I have to be there.

Since I’m home with a toddler these days, our family budget does not have a line item for Madonna tickets. I know, poor planning on my behalf. How did I not have an emergency Madonna fund before getting pregnant?


I made a list of possible ways to fund some decent, lower-seating tickets with swag (because if I’m attending, I want a memorabilia T-shirt).

1. Maybe elimination communication isn’t such a bad idea. If I stopped diapering my baby, I’d save $45 a box of land-fillers. The only problem is that being on 24/7 poop patrol may make it challenging to perform any of the WAHM gigs I saw on Pinterest.

2. After signing up to take online surveys at Swagbucks, I learned the payout would take an eternity and be in the form of Starbucks cards. I’m pretty sure Madonna wouldn’t perform in exchange for a lifetime of coffee.

3. eBay. I could sell the stuff I don’t use. Roller skates. Wet suit. Louboutin pumps. Stove. But really, I’d probably make about $6 after the costs of shipping and arguing over the authenticity of my scuffed-up red soles.

4. GoFundMe or Kickstarter are options. Do people donate to completely self-indulgent causes? Would my friends and family think I was joking about my fundraising efforts the way they failed to invite Madonna to my baby shower? And yes, I had her on my must-invite list.

5. Perhaps auctioning my out-of-print copy of Sex would garner some dough, but what true Madonna fan would let go of that piece of history? It’s so bad, it’s good.

6. You can clearly see why selling a kidney may be my only realistic option.

Stay with me while I ponder the chain of events leading up to this present-day dilemma:

Due to my chronic childhood brokeness, I sat at home while my girlfriends dressed in white lace and crosses to attend the Like a Virgin Tour, so jealous of my fellow Boy Toy nation, and I didn’t even know what a blow job was.

When HBO broadcast the Blonde Ambition Tour and The Girlie Show Tour, I got a glimpse of what I was missing. My destiny seemed to be watching her concerts on the small screen, but my devotion was true, staying glued to MTV for hours while Madonna was expecting her first child. The channel dedicated an entire day to her giving birth by stalking her hospital room. Looking back, that was creepy, but at the time I was riveted along with the rest of the world.

Next, the Drowned World and Re-Invention tours passed me by, and it became more glaringly apparent that a Madonna concert was not in the cards for me.

Though I’d given up on my Madonna dream, life suddenly threw me a big, fat unexpected bone. A friend surprised me by taking me to the friends and family performance of the Confessions Tour. I cried like I’d won a pageant, and for the first time, Madge was so close I could see the sweat on her brow. The energy in the place was euphoric and I was hooked, vowing to never miss a Madonna show again. The tides had changed in my favor and had made up for my Madonna-less past. I was no longer a Madonna virgin.

When Hard Candy hit, I flew to Las Vegas with my best friend to witness Madonna’s brilliance in style, flying home with a Sticky & Sweet Tour jacket and a mug that chipped, then shattered into pieces. Though MDNA wasn’t my favorite album, while eight-months pregnant, I waited till 10:30 p.m. for Madonna to sing, dance and play guitar like only she can. No regrets. Not even the swollen ankles for days after.

So now knowing my Madonna history, you can share my grief of missing what is guaranteed to be the most epic of Madonna concerts ever. Turns out selling organs is illegal in the United States, and even if I could sell a kidney, which I know so many deserving people are waiting for, I’m holding on to mine in case my children need one.

Like Madonna herself, I’m a mom, and that comes first.

We’ve watched Madonna grow up in the spotlight, push people’s buttons, provoking thought and social change, all while encouraging us to get into the groove. So Madonna, I’m sitting this one out, but I will never stop listening to the Queen. And I’m at peace with this, although I may desperately be seeking a scalper come October.

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