Daddy needs a drink!


August 17, 2008 :: 11:11 PM

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instrument (the band) :: mohegan sun, uncasville, ct :: august 13, 2008

I’ve been really fortunate in the past two years.  The ability to reconnect with old friends has been nothing short of amazing.  Through Facebook and MySpace, I’ve found a lot of people I knew in college.  It’s nice to be back in touch with them.  Really nice.

One of the perks is that I’ve become a groupie of my friend Derek’s band.  It wasn’t my intent, but since the drummer and I went to college together, marched bass drum together and hung out together in South Campus, it was kind of inevitable.  It doesn’t help that the Latvian half of my brain goes to the shows, and where she goes, I will most likely follow.  Just like in college. (Hey, an introvert like me needs to follow a bulldozer that’s plowing down a field of daisies.  It makes my entry into social situations much less traumatic because all the attention is on the bulldozer.  But in a good way. Honest.)  It’s also kind of inevitable that I will find someone I went to college with at an Instrument show.

At any rate, I drove the two and a half hours to Connecticut to see Instrument play at Mohegan Sun in a Battle of the Bands.  Their story never ceases to amaze me… Out of 300 something bands, they made the top eight.  They haven’t been together very long and the last time I heard them play, they were really rough and I didn’t think they were very good.  It’s amazing what a few months can do. Seriously.  They’re amazing for being a little local band.  Then again, I’ve had the pleasure of being friends with members of some of the best Connecticut bands ever - Spring Heeled Jack and BiG MiSTAKE - so this shouldn’t have been a huge shock.

Once we found Boski, we found the Dig Dugs.  I haven’t seen these people in over 10 years and it was just like I’d last seen them yesterday at the practice field.  (Well, with the exception that Dig Dug was carrying around a baby instead of an instrument…)  There were lots of laughs and lots of fun.  Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose, non? It’s so weird to hang out with these people outside of the familiar settings, to include them in our new lives, but at the same time, it is so very, very nice.

I learned something Wednesday night.  Something important.  From someone who has instantly been granted membership in my small, exclusive outer circle just for that BFO.

I often forget that people don’t know both my parents died from complications due to alcoholism and that I don’t drink for that very reason.  Now that I’m older (and somewhat wiser), I’m better around alcohol, but being around it still causes me to put my defenses up.  So, at dinner with the band and friends, the lead singer, Ben, asked me if I wanted a drink.  Instantly on the defensive because the rest of them were discussing beer, I told him I didn’t drink. The look on his face when he asked me, “Not even water?” was both adorable and heartbreaking. I had kind of tuned out the rest of them and I think he had noticed and was trying to bring me back. 

So, yeah.  Lesson learned… I might want to relax a little more when I get asked that vague a question.  My response was appropriate had he asked me if I wanted a beer, but I shouldn’t always jump to that conclusion.

He was also responsible for teaching me what it feels to be like on the other side of the pre-hug size up.  Normally, I’m the one that’s dealing with the whole-I-don’t-want-to-be-touched-by-someone-I-just-met thing. When he hugged V, I was kind of wondering if I should follow suit and then I was aware that I was being sized up in the same manner.  Apparently, he’s rather shy.  (Could have fooled me.)  So we hugged.  But when I was driving home, I couldn’t stop reflecting on how he affected me.  It’s not often that my guard is down far enough for these things to actually affect me.  Normally, I deflect things like that and I’ve become so good at it, I don’t normally know I’m doing it.  For whatever reason, Wednesday night, I was totally in the moment.  That really, seriously, never happens.  Thanks, Ben!

I could really learn to like living in the moment.  Luckily, I think I’ll have a lot more opportunities.