Sunday, May 30, 2004

Rockstar

Friday night, my wife, a group of friends and I headed east to Dallas to catch a show by the highly-underrated band, Better Than Ezra. (BTE's last release, "Closer," was one of the best albums of 2001. Sadly, the band's record label encountered troubles which led to bankruptcy. As a result, "Closer" received almost no radio or video support and slid quietly into the background amongst the clammer of Britney Spears and her cohorts.) The gig took place at a newly-opened venue, Firewater Bar & Grill. Great place for live music.

When we arrived, my friend Joe suggested we all enter a drawing to win a meet-and-greet with the band after the show. Sure, why not? About an hour later, after the warm-up act had finished their set, a local d.j. began pulling names out of a hat for the prize. I recall my buddy Adam saying to me during the drawing, "you'll be the last name called."

Surprise, surprise -- his prediction proved true.

Now, as BTE took the stage, I was pretty pumped. I also figured, what the hell, let's have a few drinks. By the time the band was 3/4 of the way through their playlist, I was feeling quite euphoric.

This elation only escalated when I was picked as the "No. 2 Guy" to aid the band in their rendition of "This Time of Year." (BTE asks the audience if anyone knows how to play a particular song. Amongst the numerous volunteers -- drunk guys who scream out "I can play it!" -- the band picks a lucky individual to come on stage and strum the guitar part. As the "No. 2 Guy," I was on-deck in the event that the first guy chosen messed it up. Unfortunately, the "No. 1 Guy" could actually play the song. Bummer for me, good for him.)

Anyway... the set eventually ends, and I'm ready to go backstage. My wife has encouraged me to take Adam instead of her (the pass only allows one guest), so we saunter casually to the backstage area, i.e. the parking lot. After getting clearance from the doorman, we make our way towards the band, who are smiling and signing autographs.

All in all, the meet-and-greet lasts about five minutes. Then the band takes off to their tour bus. Somewhat disappointed in the lack of personal interaction, I tell Adam to follow me, as I lead us through the lot towards BTE's Winnebago. Not surprisingly, we are met by a rather large bouncer who informs me that we will not be allowed inside. Serendipitously, this same bouncer is a guy I met several months ago at Larry North Fitness in Fort Worth. I start shooting the breeze and somehow manage to talk our way onto the tour bus.

And now it really gets interesting.

There we are, Adam, the band, and me -- and about a dozen groupies. There's an open bar and snacking food laid out on a table. Things are getting hazy. I'm talking with Tom and Travis, the bassist and drummer for BTE, having a good time. We take shots with the band. It's all quite surreal.

Then, out the blue, somebody turns to me and says, "we're headed to a club. Come with us. There's a limo bus to take us there." There's just one problem -- my wife and Adam's girlfriend are waiting for us inside the venue, along with the rest of our friends. I try to explain this to the band members, who promptly respond with a chorus of boos. "Just call her from the limo and tell her to meet you there," someone suggests.

Now, I don't know what it is, but something about this suggestion sounds pretty good to me at the time.

So we jump in the limo bus and head to an unknown destination. About ten minutes later, we arrive and are ushered to a roped-off section of this new nightclub. As I begin to take in my surroundings, it suddenly dawns on me.

This is a strip club.

Needless to say, when our significant others arrive several minutes later, Adam and I are quickly removed from the premises. To my wonderful wife's credit, she was calm and collected throughout the ordeal. Her main concern was the fact that I was clearly inebriated and in desperate need of a safe way home.

Nonetheless, I recall being quite upset about this turn of events, pleading my case to all who cared to listen. "You don't know what it's like to be famous!" I hollered. "This is normal!"
I'm quite certain I made an ass out of myself.

The next morning, with head pounding and stomach churning, I made calls to each of my friends whom I may have offended the night before. I also tried my best to be extraordinarily sweet to my wife.

In the end, it was probably not the most intelligent nor productive way to spend an evening.

Ah, but it was all in the name of rock and roll.

$10 Refusal

The other day, I offered Jimbo a small sum to help finance his film. Admittedly, it wasn't much, but you'd figure anything would be appreciated.

Right?

Wrong. All I received was a cold, heartless rejection of my generosity.

Some people are just mean.

Sunday, May 23, 2004

Blog Status: Alive and Well

Here's the post to keep Dedman off my back. Heaven forbid I find myself on the receiving end of a "deadbeat blogger" accusation. I'm doing what I can to keep this gravy train of excitement rolling.

Speaking of excitement, my wife and I are heading to South Beach next month to see how the rich and beautiful crowd spend their time. We're staying in a boutique hotel just off the beach, which means it will either be really cool or really stank. I'll let you know.

On another unrelated note, my little sister will be making the trek down here from NYC over Memorial Day weekend. She moved up to the Big Apple just after 9/11. After spending two years grunting it out as a waitress, she landed an awesome job last year at The Mill, a London-based company that specializes in high-end visual effects for commercials, music promos, and television. Sis started out as a receptionship, but has since moved quickly up the corporate ladder. I'm not exactly sure what her current position involves, but I know she's enjoying it.

Vaya con Dios.

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