Adele is playing Barcelona for two evenings this week. I love a good hello from the other side, but not so much at ten times face value for a ticket. So I asked Husband if he wanted to take a gamble. He said yes.

Me: “Bring a book and let’s go.”
Husband: “A book?”
Me: “Trust me.”

Books in hand, we hopped the metro shortly before the show started and rode out to Palau Sant Jordi, the concert venue.

Outside the gates were the usual collection of scalpers. Tickets were in the 400-euro range.

Husband: “You want to pay that much for a ticket?”
Me: “Absolutely not! Stand near the gate and start reading. Whenever I ask you a question, just say no.”

A few of the scalpers approached, offering to sell us tickets. I told them we’d dropped our kids at the concert and were waiting for them. In front of the scalpers I asked Husband if he wanted to buy tickets for us; he responded each time with a vehement no.

Husband and I loitered and read our books. Concertgoers dwindled, as did the scalpers offering tickets. I made a point of listening and heard the prices start to go down.

The show was about to start. Latecomers ran from the metro to the venue. The remaining scalpers offered them tickets, but were brushed off. Two scalpers approached us again. This time, I asked how much. Prices had dropped to around 150 euros per ticket. I asked Husband what he thought; he gave me a no both times.

The show got underway. No more concertgoers approached the doors. Husband, me, and three scalpers were left. I whispered to Husband, “When I wink, stop saying no, but don’t say yes, either.”

I approached the closest scalper, asked to see his ticket locations. He had some good pairs. I asked how much.

Scalper: “Ninety euros.”
Me: “A pair?”
Scalper: “No! Each.”
Me: “I’ll ask my Husband.”
Husband gave me the no (he was getting quite good at it).
Me (to the scalper): “Sorry, he won’t go for it.”
Scalper: “Tell him seventy euros each.”
Me: “I’ll try, but I don’t think it’ll work. The show has started. And he doesn’t really like Adele anyway.”

I put the question to Husband. When I got my negative answer, I shook my head sadly at the scalper. I opened my book again. Husband followed my lead.

Less than a minute later, the scalper approached.
Scalper: “Ninety euros for two tickets.”
I checked the location. (Thank goodness for concert venue apps.) The pair were one level up from the floor, unobstructed view.

“What do you think?” I asked Husband, and winked.
He did a perfect hem-and-haw.
I turned to the scalper. “How about fifty for the pair?” (This was less than face value.)
Scalper hesitated. Husband went back to his book.
“Okay, it is a deal,” said the scalper.

And that’s how Husband and I got in to see Adele. We missed her opening number of “Hello,” but I was okay with that.

After the concert, I asked Husband what he thought of my strategy.

Husband: “It was pretty brilliant. But you know, it wouldn’t have worked without my superb acting.”

Me: “You’re right, Honey. No one says “no” like you do.”