Aaron always appeared to be a more shy and quiet type to me. While we never had many conversations, I will always appreciate the fact that when I saw him, he always greeted me with a smile and kind words. But one thing is for sure........his curly hair was quite awesome!
About a little over a year had passed when I would see the band play again......this time in NJ! At the time, I wasn't really feeling like myself. My bf at the time broke up with me, stating that he didn't feel he could be with me anymore. Needless to say, I was beyond devastated......and lacking in sleep and any form of a social life. I felt like a shell. Colleen, as always, was willing to embark on an adventure to NJ to come see me......and kidnap me to a Jupiter Sunrise show in Montclair, NJ.
For the life of me, I can't remember the name of the place or where exactly in Montclair it was located, but I know that at that moment, I needed out of my house for something fun. It even helped when I decided to style my hair all curly and wear a fun new outfit out to the show, just because. And as I had hoped, when Colleen and I walked into the club, we were greeted with the same love and kindness from the band members as before.
That day had taught me something important.........that even in your worst of times, you can always find something to make you smile. Those guys made me smile for the first time in a long time. I forgot about my breakup for a while and enjoyed the music, company, and random moments that the night had had to offer. I could not have asked for a better night, even as I told the band members how much their show had helped me smile and relax for the first time in days. I was thanked with hugs and the opportunity to hang out with the band members at a diner afterward.
Aside from Colleen, this band held bearing with my previous relationship as well. As my ex and I had started talking about marriage and a future together, he had decided to bring my favorite band into the most awesome marriage proposal (to date) I could have ever imagined. A year's worth of planning and scheming with the band to determine when it would happen and how, utilizing my favorite song, "Steal Me," to capture the perfect moment. In May 2006 at CBGB's, my marriage proposal became a part of the band's and bar's history. I was so excited, seeing my favorite band in a place that I had always wanted to go, and them being a part of a big moment in my life. I never ended up getting married to my ex, but the scrapbook I created from that night I will cherish for the rest of my life.
There were two more shows that I had had the chance to see before the band members went their separate ways and Mark continued the project with new members. One was a an outdoor show in upstate NY, while the last one was at The Chance in Poughkeepsie. If I had known then that that was the last show, I probably would've given more hugs, shared more smiles, and rocked out even harder than I was. But at least in the end, Mark got to see the finished scrapbook, which I know touched him very deeply that I considered that a valuable treasure.
It's my personal freedom, a link to the me that I like and know that I can be. Whether I'm singing along about x-ray vision or paper tigers, I can relate to the words and the melody.......because it's the melody of my life.
I know that not everyone is going to understand why I love this album or what makes it so great to me, but I know. It helped me bond with friends in ways I could have never imagined. It got me through some of the most wonderful and heart-wrenching moments of my life. And most importantly, it introduced me to five of the most talented musicians that I know.
If you're reading this (Mark, Ben, Aaron, Chris, and Amanda): thank you for creating such wonderful music to the soundtrack of my life.