I spent all day and much of the night moving. After two years, we finally emptied out our storage locker in Secaucus, NJ, and said forever goodbye to the Jersey years. As we drove across Patterson Plank road -- out of Secaucus, and into Union City -- I asked Josh to find some YouTube videos of Springsteen so I could bond with the thing I most love about Jersey, as we got the hell out of that place that made me so unhappy. Born To Run, Thunder Road, The River -- all these songs about getting the hell out of Jersey -- and I started to cry listening to the momentum and drive in his music, and the sweet and powerful wail of Clarence's sax.
I asked myself if this was for my pure and selfish enjoyment, and I decided that it was not -- because we were driving through Jersey at the time, so I kept a lookout all day long for another opportunity. It didn't come til I was home, achy, sweaty, dirty, and ready for a shower. Instead of a shower though, I drew a bath, closed the door, lit a candle, and played more Springsteen. Just me and the Boss -- achy and sore and sweaty. I played a bunch of songs from Greetings from Asbury Park, and remembered what it was like when I first saw one of his live shows, and thought about how many of my friends saw his stadium shows this summer, and how sad I was to miss them but how happy I was that all these friends got to spend time in the Boss's incredible energy, and I remembered what it was like when my cousin Kenny and I drove to Jersey in 1981 when Springsteen opened the Meadowlands and we bought scalped tickets all three nights, but mostly I soaked and listened and smiled. I did it. It took til 10 PM, but I found something to do, just for my own, sheer enjoyment.
And for a self-revealing extra bonus to you readers, I used this as my high school year book quote:
I stood stone-like at midnight suspended in my masquerade
I combed my hair till it was just right and commanded the night brigade
I was open to pain and crossed by the rain and I walked on a crooked crutch
I strolled all alone through a fallout zone and come out with my soul untouched
I hid in the clouded wrath of the crowd but when they said "Sit down," I stood up.
Oooh, growin' up.