This past week, I was in Toronto to see Bob Seger in concert. For me, Bob Seger has always been (and probably will always be) the complete package. The music, the lyrics, the voice – nobody else quite measures up.
I’ve been a fan for a few decades, but this is the first time I’ve ever seen him live. When I found out he was coming to Toronto, I bought my concert ticket and booked my flight from Calgary ASAP. Could I afford it? Not really. Did I think twice about it? Hell, no. He’s saying that this might be his last tour, and I was willing to do whatever it took to see him.
Little did I know.
First, there was the cost of the concert ticket and the plane ticket, as well as taking four days off to get to a Tuesday-night concert on the other side of the country. No problem.
Trying to save a bit of money, I stayed with a friend in her studio apartment. I slept in a narrow walkway on the floor, on a makeshift bed of two cushions scavenged from the loveseat. I’m 5’10”. The loveseat? About 4’6”. But it was fine once I stuffed a chair cushion under my feet.
Her two cats had never witnessed someone sleeping on the floor. I was thoroughly and frequently inspected. I sleep on my back, which would be an unimportant piece of information unless you also know that the cats’ climbing tree was right beside the spot where I slept. You don’t know the meaning of “rude awakening” until a six-pound cat drops from a great height to land on your unprotected belly at three o’clock in the morning. Lucky thing I really like cats.
My friend kindly offered to pick me up after the concert, reasoning that it would be difficult to catch a cab downtown at that hour on a Tuesday night. I stood at the corner of Bay Street and the Gardiner Expressway waiting for her, watching the long line of cabs whisk all the other concert-goers home. The parking lot across the street emptied. Soon I stood completely alone in the darkness in an unfamiliar city. It was okay. I only had one proposition, and he graciously took no for an answer.
On the way home, I was singled out for the “random” physical search at the airport. Four out of the last five times I’ve flown, I’ve been chosen for this search, so I have to question the randomness of the selection process. Normally, I’d be mildly flattered that they can’t keep their hands off my body, but… really?
I figure the Airport Authority is missing a huge customer-service opportunity here. If I have to get groped, they should offer me a lineup of attractive security guys to choose from. Getting felt up could at least be an enjoyable experience.
As my plane descended in Calgary, I kept glancing out the window and seeing only whiteness. “Must be low overcast,” I said to myself. The jolt of wheels on landing strip alerted me to the fact that there really was only whiteness out there. A foot of snow had fallen the previous night. I wore runners.
It was the best trip ever.
Seriously. I loved every minute of the concert. He put on a great show, and the joy of being there was well worth a few minor inconveniences. I didn’t come down from my concert high (non-chemically-induced, thank-you) for days. Hell, I’d pay good money to hear Bob Seger sing anything. Even “Happy Birthday”.
Any other Seger fans out there? What’s your best/worst concert experience?