Hello Old Friend
It was the changing of the seasons and time to rotate the clothing stock. I’ve always been a shorts and t-shirt type of guy… only recently having exchanged the t-shirts for polos in an effort to appear more professional around the office, but the shorts were always a staple, especially in the summer.
With spring around the corner and my love of shorts instead of jeans growing ever stronger with each increasing notch of the mercury I decided it was time. Time to put the long sleeve shirts, the hoodies, the winter gear to the back of the closet and bring forth all the wondrous goodies that make warm weather more enjoyable.
As grabbed handful after handful of shirt filled hangers, almost as if by movie magic a golden shaft of light worked its way through the clouds and into my bedroom. Through some magnificent geometry of refraction and reflection this solid beam of light completed it’s journey into one of the darkest corners of my closet. Like a beacon in the night leading a ship into safe harbor, this drew me in… almost begging me to see what lies in this beam of light.
After shuffling a few random shoes and ties out-of-the-way, there it was. My most favorite of concert t-shirts. Immediately I was brought back to the deafening noise of the speaker towers amplifying crunching guitar riffs and thumping drum beats.
It was my first show, I had missed the cut off to get fan club tickets; but through the connections of my father, I was able to score two seats in the lower bowl of the United Center. Stage left, 18 rows up; and all for the low price of about three dozen tulip bulbs. Tulip bulbs were not cheap, and in fact were shipped from the Netherlands, as luck would have it I knew a couple of the guys who worked at the tulip farm and they gave me one heck of a deal. All I knew was that I was going to Chicago to see Pearl Jam and my tickets would be at will call.
Knowing that this was the first Pearl Jam show I would ever attend I wanted desperately to soak up all that could. The vendors, the ticket scalpers, other fans desperately looking to improve their seats, even the “unofficial” t-shirts being sold in the parking lot… you know the type. The shirts that look like they were made in someone’s basement with a few iron on patches… yeah, I took it all in. Knowing that the higher quality, as well as higher priced shirts would be inside, I held on to my money for inside the venue.
After making our way into the venue, my best friend who made the trip with me, decided we should check out what the whole arena had to offer. We would stop at each vendor station and see what wares they had to offer. The first few had a limited selection and nothing really jumped out at me. I was looking for a concert t-shirt that would be different from what most had ever seen. I wanted it to be the envy of all those that didn’t make it to the show.
And then like a bolt of lightning… there it was. The shirt that would be mine to forever seal this night full of memories from my first show of my favorite band.
As luck would have it, I found that shirt 12 years later at the bottom of my closet and all those memories came flooding back, just as I had hoped.
This post is fiction and is part of The Red Dress Club Friday Link-Up. While the location and t-shirt are real, some of the events written about in this post did not happen. Comments are welcome and thank you for reading.