I was sitting at my computer last night, going over all the tour listings on Pollstar.com when I came to the startling conclusion that I didn’t have enough ticket money for all the shows I wanted to see. I mean, with Christmas shopping and last year’s settlement against me, my financial resources had already been pushed to the limit. Like it or not, I was going to have to choose between Buddy Guy and Bob Dylan, or Bryan Adams and . Yeah, that’s right, I had to make the big decisions, and I knew it wasn’t going to be easy.

Luckily I had some help.

Like Fred the Dalmatian, who has bailed me out of many a jam. He looked at the screen, cocked his head, raised one ear and said, “Sure, you can buy tickets for Diana Krall. Or you could put the money in some short-term growth investments and maybe raise enough cash for the summer amphitheatre season, including the service charges.”

Of course, you have to consider the source and Dalmatians are hardly known for their financial advice. So I turned to my cat Marge, who told me I should take all the money I have and spend it on as many tickets as possible, like Creed, David Byrne and Galactic. “So what if you run out of dough?” she said. “At least you’ll have concert tickets.”

But what else would you expect from a cat? Especially an old Siamese like Marge. Besides, can anyone really trust a cat? I realized I was going to need more advice, so I turned on the TV.

As I watched Tom Brokaw deliver that evening’s news, I counted the number of times he blinked during the international stories, clearly indicating that I should buy tickets for Stars On Ice. However, after watching all three network newscasts, it was clear that Peter Jennings was contradicting Tom blink for blink, clearly urging me to buy tickets for Linkin Park instead, while Dan Rather blinked, scratched his nose and straightened his tie, meaning that I should see Sean Costello or Spiritualized. Dan never could make up his mind. And don’t even get me started on Geraldo.

What to do? Fred, Marge, Tom, Pete and Dan, none of them were in agreement about which tickets I should buy. Plus, I hadn’t even mentioned the January dates for Psyco On Da Bus Feat. Tony Allen. I thought I was going to be the victim of my own cognitive dissonance. That’s when I heard a squeaking from the box in the corner.

“You should pick one show, like The Moody Blues or Janet Jackson, and concentrate on buying tickets for that show only,” said Rikki, my pet mouse. “Just like we used to do when I worked for that big laboratory on campus. Always keep your eyes on the cheese.”

“Of course!” I cried. “It all seems so simple once you put it that way.” Leave it up to a mouse for the really big choices. I thanked everyone for their suggestions, turned on the TV, and settled back for an evening of late night television. However, that’s when I realized that my troubles were far from over, and I was faced with yet another decision.

Leno or Letterman? Gosh, all these decisions are enough to drive a man crazy.