What would you do with a grand and 4 free days?
June 14, 2007 12:56 PM   Subscribe

Next Thursday - 21st - it's your birthday (Happy Birthday!). You'll be 35, you're single, you live in LA, you're off work until Monday, and you've got a $1000 burning a hole in your pocket. What would *you* do?
posted by The_Partridge_Family to Grab Bag (47 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
What would I do? Check out where there are flight specials to, find a moderately expensive one, check out what four-star restaurants there are around there (especially if there's a concert I'd like to hit up), then book, reserve, fly, eat and party.

But what do YOU like to do?
posted by klangklangston at 1:00 PM on June 14, 2007

Drive to vegas, put it all on 35 black, it's your birthday
posted by poppo at 1:01 PM on June 14, 2007

Response by poster: thanks klang - I specifically didn't include my own thoughts though. I don't want a, "well what are your interests?" post - I'm looking more for suggestions, uh, outside of myself.
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 1:04 PM on June 14, 2007

buy a busted school bus.

paint it as the partridge family.

drive around town, attract school children, hipsters, gen xers.

load everyone into the bus.

drive to a secluded location.

burn bus.
posted by Stynxno at 1:11 PM on June 14, 2007 [1 favorite]

remove people from bus before burning bus.
posted by Stynxno at 1:11 PM on June 14, 2007 [5 favorites]

Buy everyone in line at Pink's a hot dog.
posted by DandyRandy at 1:13 PM on June 14, 2007

I wish I was in Tijuana
Eating barbequed iguana
I'm on a Mexican Radio

Go to Tijuana? Drink Maragaritas, Negro Modelo, and Tequila until you can't walk.
posted by stovenator at 1:14 PM on June 14, 2007

Buy a new used guitar. Or amp. Or buy parts and spend the weekend building a new guitar. Probably a Tele. With humbuckers. Can you tell I've thought about this?
posted by The World Famous at 1:14 PM on June 14, 2007

Buy 200 MeFi sockpuppet accounts. Start a MetaTalk thread complaining about sockpuppets and then carry on an extended argument among yourselves, culminating in 200 flameouts.
posted by found missing at 1:16 PM on June 14, 2007 [4 favorites]

From a Pervert: Go to bunny ranch in Vegas and make fantasies become reality.
posted by bleucube at 1:19 PM on June 14, 2007

I'd get a last-minute flight to wherever I can get the most bang-per-buck for that $1000.

i don't necessarily mean that kind of bang
posted by desuetude at 1:20 PM on June 14, 2007

This easily wins for "least fun answer EVAR", but I would at least consider investing the $1k in an S&P index fund that I would cash out at age 70. Given average market return, by then it will be worth around $38,500, assuming the 11% historical return continues.

I would also plan,at some point over the weekend, on getting piss drunk with my friends at my favorite bar.
posted by jtfowl0 at 1:24 PM on June 14, 2007 [1 favorite]

Throw a fancy party with top shelf liquor and good food for 30 or so friends.
posted by mckenney at 1:26 PM on June 14, 2007

Throw a party. A $500 party (save the other half). And invite all your friends, but stipulate that can only come if they bring one person that, to the best of their knowledge, you have never met (and won't burn down your house). Make a list of these people, and take polaroids of everybody (that'll burn up some dollars itself).

Next year, when you're 36, do exactly the same (with the other half), but (hopefully), you'll be inviting some of those strangers back as folk who have become new friends in the past 12 months. And then this time they'll be bringing new people. Post up all the polaroids so everybody can reflect on changes in facial hair, mood, absent friends, and so on...

And repeat until dead. When your funeral will have to be held in a stadium.
posted by klaatu at 1:27 PM on June 14, 2007 [15 favorites]

Run 35 miles.
posted by probablysteve at 1:27 PM on June 14, 2007

Visit a friend across country and celebrate your birthday together.
posted by caddis at 1:28 PM on June 14, 2007

A thousand bucks buys a pretty nice tattoo.
posted by box at 1:29 PM on June 14, 2007

I'd eat at the French Laundry if I had a grand to blow. No question. I don't know how far Napa and Yountville are, but I'd drive half a day to eat Thomas Keller's food.
posted by peacecorn at 1:29 PM on June 14, 2007

Pre-order two of these these.
posted by bondcliff at 1:33 PM on June 14, 2007

Vegas, baby.
posted by wafaa at 1:37 PM on June 14, 2007

invest the money, you're 5 years away from 40 and certainly creeping up on retirement
posted by Salvatorparadise at 1:38 PM on June 14, 2007

I'd think of a long-lost friend (or group of friends) in a far away city who I hadn't seen in ages, call them up right now and ask if they're busy next weekend and if they have a couch you could use in return for $500 worth of food and drink over the weekend, then fly there and reconnect.

Actually, I like klaatu's idea. A lot.
posted by arco at 1:39 PM on June 14, 2007

Go skydiving.
posted by mjp at 1:46 PM on June 14, 2007

Road trip.
posted by Kadin2048 at 1:47 PM on June 14, 2007

Hookers and blow, duh.
posted by Roach at 1:47 PM on June 14, 2007

*I* would buy myself an expensive camera, put any left to pay bills, and spend the evening eating pizza and watching tv on my computer. Because I don't know anyone in LA.
posted by frobozz at 1:53 PM on June 14, 2007

I'd have some sort of montage.
posted by Bonzai at 2:03 PM on June 14, 2007 [1 favorite]

Fly to Cancun & get out of town ASAP. Go south to Tulum. Spend 5 days snorkeling in cenotes, exploring ruins in the jungle, drinking fancy cocktails on the beach, lounging in my cabana with pretty girls.
posted by luriete at 2:21 PM on June 14, 2007

For the introvert, buy a collection of great books and start reading? For the extrovert, I love klaatu's idea!

(The World Famous - are you my husband??)
posted by platinum at 2:22 PM on June 14, 2007

I'd get a live music permit in a local park, and put up signs about the event around the neighborhood. I'd borrow a few grills, make steaks for my friends and dogs & veggie burgers for everyone else, and dj the night away. In fact, I'll do that next week! I'm about to turn thirty.
posted by wzcx at 2:25 PM on June 14, 2007

I love the idea of "Buy everyone in line at Pink's a hot dog." I think this could lead to making some new friends, meeting some interesting people, and feeling damn pimp about yourself.

Plus, chances are, there will be someone in that line who is hot, single, and appreciative of the free hot beef sausage. wink wink.
posted by duckierose at 2:35 PM on June 14, 2007

Seriously, I suggest saving at least 3/4 of it. The economy's going to hell, the country's run by fools, and you can't be sure you won't really NEED the money in a week or a year.
posted by davy at 2:39 PM on June 14, 2007

- Go downtown, pick out 5 people who look nice but down-on their luck, and give them 100 bucks each.

- Give 20 dollars to each of 5 bums, but make them promise that they'll spend it on booze.

- With the remaining 400 dollars, buy a round of drinks for a crowded bar. I've always wanted to do that.
posted by chrisamiller at 2:40 PM on June 14, 2007 [1 favorite]

Set up an IRA.
posted by kc0dxh at 3:05 PM on June 14, 2007

Drive to Vegas, set up an IRA for a hooker: make fantasies become reality.
posted by found missing at 3:17 PM on June 14, 2007 [1 favorite]

This is tough...

#1) Get a makeover. Go to a decent salon that can do hair and makeup. Tell them "do what you think is best" Get a mani/pedi while there. Go to a department store like Nordstom's or Macy's, claim a salesperson. Buy a new outfit, but try on a gazillion things.

#2) Knock something off my "things I always wanted to do" list. For me, it would be a trip to Yosemite with some girlfriends. For you, maybe it is skydiving.

#3) You can probably never go wrong with a spa day.
posted by Mozzie at 3:46 PM on June 14, 2007

LAX-Vegas (rtn) - $234 (Southwest)
3 nights @ Excalibur hotel $450 (vegas.com offer)
Tandem skydive from 2 miles up - $199 (skydivelasvegas)

$100 on 21 Red

Maybe just squander the rest :)
posted by Jakey at 4:37 PM on June 14, 2007

Go to DisneyLand!
posted by matty at 4:56 PM on June 14, 2007

A few thoughts from someone that lives in LA:

You could buy 1/30th of an Hermès purse at Neiman's ... But that's just silly.

You could have a fairly nice dinner with five other people at Mr. Chow; if you tip the valet guy a $20 that'd run you about a grand. Make sure to get the Nine Seasons Prawns!

You could but the pretty nice suede jacket at the Ralph Lauren store that I've been envying ...

You could leave your car in long-term parking at LAX for almost three months!

Two words: Spearmint Rhino.

(Also: You could pay a year's worth of my parking fines! You could buy 14 tanks of gas for your car! You could be the absolute *king* of the 99¢ store down on Washington in Culver City!)
posted by GatorDavid at 5:23 PM on June 14, 2007

Fly my mom out to watch the baby. Hire a couple of handy-people, from craigslist or something, to work on the yard, finish putting base shoe around the living room, clean the garage and shop, and clean my office.

Wow. That's really unexciting.

OK. How about rent a house in Ojai, bring four friends up, and record an album.
posted by nonmyopicdave at 5:45 PM on June 14, 2007

Find a few people who you really, really appreciate and take them out for a nice dinner. Maybe people you haven't talked to in a while. Who knows.

Travel or not, it doesn't matter, but get a hotel room and pretend you're a tourist. A really, really extravagant tourist. Make rash decisions. Maybe even get something from the minibar.

If you have extra, save or donate some of it to your preferred charitable cause.

Fly out to visit someone. Tell them to gather up their friends and/or anyone you know in the area, and decide on an activity, because it's your birthday and you shouldn't have to plan, dammit. (make sure you mention that you get veto power over the final activity.) Bonus points for not-every-day events like concerts. Actually, you could probably do this with someone local too.
posted by mismatched at 7:01 PM on June 14, 2007

Go to bookstore buy favorite books, then drive up to hot springs and spend several days relaxing. Invite friends and if they can't afford it, offer to pay for them.
posted by zia at 10:17 PM on June 14, 2007

Friday dinner for two, with wine flights, at the Chef's Table at Providence, breakfast at Pacific Dining Car and the Saturday matinee at the Bob Baker Marionette Theater. The rest of the weekend is up to you.
posted by Scram at 10:38 PM on June 14, 2007

Lots of good ideas, here's my suggestion:

Get art.

The first day or two, you figure out what kind of art most excites you. Do you go gaga over jewellery, or does sculpture do it for you? Do you love photography or classical music? Does poetry fill your dreams, or oil on canvas? How about pottery?

Once you figure out the medium, you seek the messenger. Your budget dictates either an advanced student or a struggling newcomer. This is where the next couple of days are going to be spent. You are going to the school(s) where artists of the appropriate ilk learn their trades - you start looking around/ asking around for someone who matches as much as possible your aesthetic sense. (One advantage - you meet new, arty (hopefully interesting) folk).

Finally, the last period of time, and the first portion of your funds go the collaborative process where you and your selected artisan decide/concoct/flesh out what will be created for you, and paying a deposit/materials fee.

Some period of time later, you pay the rest of your moolah to take possession of the painting/photograph/jewellery/custom song/sculpture/unique item that will remain your reminder of your 35th birthday for a long time to come. (It may also, if you have chosen wisely/luckily become an item of significant worth beyond whatever sentimental value it will always have.)

In any event, whatever you choose to do to celebrate, I think it is your moral responsibility to respond in the thread after your celebratory day(s), and let us all know what you did, and how it turned out...
posted by birdsquared at 10:44 PM on June 14, 2007

birdsquared in has the same idea as I have.

Get art.

I would think of it as as much of a nation donation than as an expense. You are helping boost a young artist career. Perhaps, with your generosity, this artist will go on and have a positive impact on the cultural sphere of your town. Perhaps it will have an impact on your whole county, or even new whole country.

But no matter how far your favorites artist goes, he will always have the piece of art with you.
posted by gmarceau at 11:29 PM on June 14, 2007

Response by poster: these are great suggestions - thank you everybody.

birdsquared - I will absolutely respond with how it all works out. thanks!
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 10:23 AM on June 15, 2007

Response by poster: OK - here's what I did: I rented an SUV and drove 1800 miles roundtrip from LAX to the Spiral Jetty in the Great Salt Lake in Utah. When I got there, I waded in (it was partially submerged) all the way around the jetty to the center, at which point I considered my pilgrimage to be complete. The rental + gas + food + 2 nights in a 4 star hotel in Salt Lake City pretty much ate up the grand. Photos here. Thanks again for all the suggestions. If it counts for anything, when I came back I quit drinking. I don't know why, I just stopped, and I've been sober since (it'd been 18yrs). It's pretty much been the best thing I've ever done in my life, so I guess the trip was a greater success than I expected.
posted by The_Partridge_Family at 9:29 PM on March 1, 2008

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