I guess this isn't STRICTLY a financial post, but they're both things of an entertainment nature that I spent money on after some consideration so it flies, albeit loosely.
Wednesday night (5/20) I went to a Ben Folds concert at the Hollywood Palladium. I took a friend who is a big Ben Folds fan for a belated birthday celebration. The venue was really cool. The Palladium is an art deco style relatively intimate venue with standing room (dance floor, balcony, VIP balcony) for about 4,000 people. The acoustics were excellent - we stood on the balcony about 45 degrees of the center of the stage. The concert itself was great. Four acapella groups opened with Ben Folds covers and the audience voted for their favorite by applause. Ben himself is an awesome pianist and singer. The band was also quite good - drum set drummer, miscellaneous percussionist, keyboardist, and bassist. I knew probably about half the songs - Ben did a fair bit of his newer stuff. For the encore, he brought out Josh Groban to sing for the first song and then did a Dr. Dre cover for a final closer. Final verdict: a great concert at a great venue - well worth it.
Thursday night (5/21) I went to see Star Trek in IMAX at The Bridge with my brothers and a couple friends. The IMAX experience is never disappointing and the film itself was quite good. The characters were well written and acted, and the first time Kirk plops down in the captain's chair it screams young Shatner. It's cool meet all the familiar people from The Original Series as young men and women. I don't want to give away any plot for those who haven't seen it, but I can heartily recommend it for experienced Trekkies and newbies alike.