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It’s been hours since I checked myself into Niners Anonymous. I’ve grown to hate purple confetti, blackouts, the name Jacoby Jones, all of these things. But, with the Super Bowl and the NFL officially done until September and these sorrows still rolling around in my system, we’ve got to start focusing on what’s coming up. Sports and entertainment collide next month as the NBA’s highly anticipated All Star Weekend lands in Space City for the first time since 2006.

Yet in a party city like Houston, in which one could literally plan a night out every night of the week, the focus is not so much on the actual game, charity events, or dunk contest … it’s about what occurs after.

And everyone is trying to cash in.

While famed strip club Dreams received harsh criticism for raising entry from its traditional $20 to a staggering $200, other more traditional clubs are taking the same approach; and many native Houstonians have already taken offense at the perceived gouging of establishments they regularly support.

I feel your pain.

Not even the magical batter that the wings from Dreams is dipped in would make me pay that much. The closest I might get to Maliah is via oen of her YouTube videos but that’s about it and somehow, that’s alright. I won’t be hassled by bottle service and all of the things that may make it seem I’m keeping up with the Joneses. But let’s be frank Houston, ASW is not meant for you.

Not directly that is.

With an influx of out of towners looking to pay ridiculous amounts for all types of events and services; the city is already counting this as an unexpected windfall. Police are already readying their hands for tickets, while promoters are preparing to raise rates to compensate for the overinflated fees their event hosts are requesting.

So where does that leave the native Houstonian? Use these 5 handy tips to successfully navigate your way through the weekend.

club-women

All-Star Weekend Rule #1: You Don’t Have A Club Connect
Be it the promoter, bartender, or simply the door girl; money will be the motivation for the weekend. Don’t assume you’ll be allowed in using your usual “I know .” Because it’s literally the OZ version of celebrities and by the time you and your $300 outfit (or $50 if you’re frugal) get to the door, at least five people with more clout will have used your so called “mans-n-them”.

You will be outside, and embarrassed.

All-Star Weekend Rule #2: Early Birds Get The Worm
If you are intent on attending one of the many events going on throughout the weekend pay in advance if possible. Many events are providing 3-day passes or things of that nature. This saves the inevitable price gouging the day of.

All-Star Weekend Rule #3: Do NOT Become Friendly With The Cops
Since we’re in Houston, meet HPD. HPD’s job is to protect and serve (and maybe make a name for themselves, see Adrian Peterson). HPD is not your friend. The jail downtown is cold and you will soon grow tired of oatmeal cream pies and the people next to you agitated because their significant other finally decided to toss them in jail. Stay as far away as possible.

All-Star Weekend Rule #4: Don’t Make Your Turn Up City Wide News
Do not engage in foolery inside of any event. No skipping on tabs, using fraudulent cards, nothing. Servers are already preparing and will have no mercy. You thought the Spartans in “300” were ruthless when it came to disrespect? Servers have worse attitudes and even less to deal with, thus they have even LESS to lose. (See Number 3 if you need a reminder.)

not-baller

All-Star Weekend Rule #5: Thirst Wisely My Friends
Do not try to compete with those outside of your financial means. They will be gone by Monday, and so will your tax refund. Same goes for your attempts at the men and women that come in and you’re attempts to build a “locationship” because by Monday, the rules will be changed and you might find yourself blasted on Instagram or Twitter via screen capture. Good luck.

* if you’re curious as to why Chappelle’s featured here, just imagine the club scene starting at 2:38 and you pretty much have your All-Star Weekend. Just, it won’t be in slow motion sadly.