On Wednesday night, the musicians who created my number one favorite album of my quarter century life time - the Get Up Kids - came to Emo's. The first song to ever grace my ears by them was "Holiday," on a mix CD my friend Josh gave me in the tenth grade. I don't remember anything else on the mix CD, but I played "Holiday" so many times in my 1994 Jeep Cherokee, cruising around Fayetteville, AR, with the windows rolled down, that he finally suggested I give the whole album a try. The Red Letter Day EP quickly followed Something to Write Home About, and the rest... wasn't history. It was a CD that got played so much I had to buy a new one to replace it. If you can't tell already, I'm fond of the group.
When I saw them advertised to play in Austin, I bought tickets for myself and Lennon well in advance online. After they finally arrived in the mail - green and shiny with a holographic sticker - I proudly displayed them in the mirror's frame on my dresser, a daily reminder of my impending high school obsession to be gratified. Wednesday finally came, I rushed home to grab the tickets and my boyfriend so we could rush right back out to go downtown, but to my surprise and dismay, the house was empty. When efforts to get in touch proved futile, I did what any self respecting, stood-up girlfriend would do:
I calmly brought his pillows and a blanket downstairs, made him a bed on the couch, (the short one), and wrote a note in red pen that read simply: "Forget?" with the ticket receipt on top. The spare ticket I suddenly found myself with was quickly offered to my friend Elizabeth, with the suggestion that she and her girlfriend split the price of a third ticket. So, I left my love letter on his pillow, put a note on his laptop in our room that read "downstairs" just in case he missed it, and left.
Arriving at Emo's was also a surprise - I had no idea that a band I have adored since tenth grade, (TEN YEARS AGO - goodness), was still so popular. It was packed, and being front row was out of the question. Elizabeth and Andrea abandoned my plight to move forward after being elbowed back by a few misplaced fraternity brothers, with the threat of violence on the elbowers if they did not remove themselves from the situation quickly. I'd normally agree with their stand, but this was the Get Up Kids, and I needed to be as close as possible. "Close as possible" ended up being the third row, pressed in on all sides, with the two tallest people in the venue standing in front of me, and the one ass who thought "Holiday" was a moshable song behind me. Nonetheless, I held my ground. Forty-five minutes into the set, I felt someone pull on my sleeve, and before I could flash my face of annoyance, I saw Lennon, crouching behind me so that his too-tall head wouldn't block the view of the girls he'd just pushed in front of, telling me he'd promised he'd be there, and was sorry he forgot about the show when he agreed to go to the poetry slam with Eirik, (I also had a message on my phone from Eirik begging me to go easy on Lennon - aww, male solidarity).
So Lennon had forgotten the slam was that night, came home to find my note, had an "oh crap" moment, ran out the door while Eirik cheered him on with "Go boy go," drove downtown, tried to get in the door with the ticket receipt stub thinking it was the ticket, got laughed at by the door man, ran down the block to the ATM for the cover, got in, got a beer, pushed his way to the front stage left, couldn't find me, pushed his way back out, got another beer, saw Elizabeth who told him to look for the girl in yellow towards stage right, dove back in to the crowd, shoved his way toward an SLR camera up in the air with a yellow hoodie beneath it, and finally found me. He said he suffered a black eye and bruised elbows to find me in the deluge of bodies.
Needless to say, I brought his pillows back upstairs for him when we got home. No too-short love seat doghouse sleeping for my forgetful, sunburned, crowd diving boyfriend. At least, not this time around.