Cultural events can be quite pricey, but I've always had a bargain outlet wherever I've lived - Manhattan, Boston, and now in Ft Lauderdale. They're all are must-buy deals if you live in the local areas. To do the cities justice I'm devoting one blog to each of the three. Tip # 1 is for Boston -- simply because it is finish first!Museum of Fine Arts (MFA)
. I had just moved to Boston and was starving for cultural pleasures. It's Boston -- they had to be there. But where?
I finally got my butt to the MFA. "Fashion Photography
" was on special exhibit. At $25 it was a bit excessive but turned out to
be worth it. The energy. The imagination. The curation.
The love fest continued after the show when I made the pilgrimage to the museum store
- my temple. I was sure to spend more money than justifiable on books, jewelry, and creative gifts for people for no reason.
When I went to pay they asked me if I was a member. Apparently I would get 20% off (a special promotion that week) my pile of goods. Savings added up to
about $18. So I ask the requisite question - how much? Membership
was $70. For that I would get:
- Free museum entry ($15)
- Free special exhibits for two ($25 each)
- 40% discount on music and film
- 10% off store and restaurant
- VIP lounge with wireless (possibly the most valuable benefit)
Hmmm...I had already spent $43 of it. One more special exhibition will more than pay for membership.
Then a light bulb went off -- there may be another perk.
Maaaaaybe my guest at special
would buy me a meal or drink
at the restaurant
entitled, and wishful thinking -
I know. But the food was delectable, the menu was innovative, and the execution artistic.
(By the way, I have very generous friends).
It was a treat -- dutch or not.
Membership? It was a no-brainer.
Forgetting museum admission, membership paid off. I was a regular at the film fests
and alternative music concerts
, which were usually intellectually accessible to us common folk.
The films were true independents - you know, the
kind that cost 5k, which took the director a year to raise.
Here's an example: I saw a film about an African young man who, after his father's death, finds out that he
has 49 brothers and sisters.
Well, he sets out to meet them all. It wasn't clear whether he did, but cultural disparity between how he was received by the siblings and their mothers there verses how he might have been here was riveting.
Now let's get real. When you see these things your ego inflates. Wow, aren't I cool? But it was an authentic glimpse into a world that, sadly few would see -- I am truly privileged.
This membership was a meaningful gift to me from me.