Friday, June 29, 2012

I Like Girls Who Wear Abercrombie & Fitch

Another blog post of the next chapter of my "Meg and Dia" Story Series. For the first few chapters read these posts: "Here", "Here", and "Here". These posts about how my first band started out, the process of "getting signed" by a major label, all the ups and downs.


Dia and I performed a few more times after that gig at The Electric Theater. With our practices becoming more and more rare and our enthusiasm tanking, I decided to pack a bag and try the "college" route.

 I placed a stack of neatly folded jeans into my suitcase with my father's voice echoing from down the hallway, "You're only young once. You ought to keep at it." I shrugged off his advice and reached up for a few photos on my wall that I wanted to bring with me to my dorm. "You're going to regret this. You really don't need to go to college." I glanced up from my packing. Really? What kind of father gives his child the advice NOT to go to college. I had to convince him over and over again that I needed an education to find a real job, a steady income. I needed stability, and my sister and my little dream and our gigs around town weren't going to give that to me.

Of course, I didn't want to leave Dia to fend for herself at home while I went off to college. I realize now, looking back how hurt she felt and abandoned at my leaving. I tried to play down the enormity of my decision, because although I would never admit it out loud, leaving Dia was one of the hardest parts about my "grown up" decision. I held back tears and succeeded in my goal of showing no emotion. Why I couldn't have simply given her a huge hug, balled my eyes out, and asked her to beg me to stay, I'll never know. 

I basically lived in a closet for a year, sharing half of the tiny space the University liked to call a "dorm room" with another really religious girl who frowned upon my cut-off jeans and late curfew. (I actually ended up becoming really great friends with her.) I did all the college "activities". I attended some really lame parties, drank a beer on a rooftop in the middle of the night with strangers, fell in love with a tortured artist, and flunked Political Science. 


You know, it's true what they say. The professors at the U of U really do give their students personal attention. I remember one afternoon, while away on a weekend trip, my Political Science professor called my cell phone. My service was terrible, so I called him back on a pay phone. There I was, in a parking lot in who-knows-where listening to my professor tell me that I "didn't give the class my all" and he knew that "my new girl friend I was hanging out was trouble", and that he was prepared to let me take the class over again for free. And I didn't even know he knew my name the whole semester!

I worked at Abercrombie & Fitch while attending college. Aside from one really good friend who I could talk to about dreams and personal aspirations, I could never quite find my stride in retail. I passed the time avoiding the automatic perfume sprayer thingy from the ceiling. (I'm very sensitive to smell!) My boss would catch me in ten minute intervals darting behind display tables every time the pungent scent misted from overhead.

I had my epiphany, if you will, while working one of my afternoon shifts. I played a game in my head, listening to the repetitive techno music and trying to figure out the chord progressions of the songs and the intervals of the vocal melodies. That day, I'm not sure if the  smell became a little too much for my sensitive nose or if thinking about Biology finals made me anxious, or standing at the entrance with that plastic smile on my face reciting the same tired line, "Have you heard about the new Emma flares?" was the straw that broke the camels back.


All I could think was…

Really?

What am I doing?


This is what my life has come to, huh?

After my shift I ran out of my place of work with all the little people who live inside my brain jumping in triumph. Later that evening I called Dia. Our conversation went something like this: 

" Dia, you have got to get up here?"

"What? Why? I'm still in high school."

" I know, but high school isn't that important!"

"You're starting to sound like dad."

"So."

"So. I'm not coming up there."

"School isn't quite what I thought it was. My job, although I'm grateful, is not what I'm supposed to be doing with my life!  We need to start playing music again. I've written a few songs. We'll find a new band. Just come up here... Please?"

"No."

"Please? There are cupcakes in Salt Lake..."

"Okay."

Honestly,
MEg



32 comments:

  1. Haha:
    "Please? There are cupcakes in Salt Lake..."
    "Okay."
    Sweet! c:

    It was the Smell of the Birth of your glory..haha :P :)

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    1. I know the way to Dia's heart! You better believe it.

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  2. HAHA! CUPCAKES! The last part of this post made my day.

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  3. keep 'em coming, Meg!
    I love reading up on these flashbacks of yours ~

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    1. Good! I actually have really enjoyed writing these:)

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  4. i love these posts. it's like a book i can't put down but i have to because that's all there is so far. haha. i anxiously await the next chapter!

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  5. I love reading these! It's awesome that your dad was so supportive, and that you were willing to risk a "stable job with a steady income" to follow your dream :)

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    1. Yes, I think that, at the time, I remembered that the easiest path isn't always the best path, you know? Striving for your dream while eating raman noodles and spaghetti is much better than eating raman noodles and spaghetti without a dream. What?

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    2. Haha makes sense and now I'm hungry for ramen noodles...

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  6. I think it is funny that you had to convince your Dad that you should actually GO TO College! lol! I don't think anyone would dispute that a college education is valuable, but I think your Dad understood that as you get older commitments and responsibilities really impede being able to follow your dreams. I'm thinking he really wanted a happy, fulfilling life for you and for you not to waste your amazing unique talents. What father does not want that for their kids?
    I think, it's really interesting that after you made your decision to go to college, you eventually decided to came back to what you love. Those two decisions must have been hard for many reasons. I can't help but think what if you stayed in college? How different life would be for you and us all.

    "Your life is the culmination of each decision you make every moment (whether you are aware of what you are choosing or not)"-Carol Stansfield

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    1. I love that quote. My dad really did have a greater understanding of life, and I would have done well to follow his advice at the time, but I think that, in a way, it was necessary for me to choose the "other" option to REALLY understand how much music meant to me.

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  7. Awesome posts Meg. Keep them coming. Until then I am off to the store to get some cupcakes!

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  8. Where can I find a dad like that?
    Or some sort of guidance...
    I still don't know what to do, I'm 20 and I'm not sure if it's school or laying around all day...
    I don't have a natural talent it seems, or if I do it hasn't hit me yet!
    So, luckily you found yours...
    I'm waiting for mine!

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    1. "laying around all day". "School"....wait. "Laying around all day". Don't listen to me! I'll give you horrible advice. Ha ha. You'll figure it out. I'm sure you will, and when you do, it's going to feel AMAZING. Trust me:)

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  9. hahahah I love how you convinced Dia to meet up with you with " there are cupcakes in salt lake."

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  10. Great Meg! I love how you knew how to convince Dia to come to Salt Lake...CUPCAKES! Too funny. You can't go anywhere without cupcakes, right? And the fact that you are able to asses what you want and go with it. You are one smart cookie (cupcake?) Meg..without college! :)

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  11. I really love reading about MaD's history and your personal history also. I still don't know a lot about the band's past, so these blog posts really help me understand and respect you and the band so much more, which seems kinda impossible sometimes. As for a cupcake, I'm counting down the days until I can sink my teeth into a red velvet one again!

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  12. hahaha that's a great closer. i didn't know you went to U of U though, for the first 16 years of my life i wanted nothing more than to go to BYU. thankfully i grew up and wisened up as well.

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  13. From one author to another I suggest you write an autobiography and submit it for publishing. Though I may have some bias, seeing as yours and Dia's lyrics are a huge influence of mine, it's evident you possess a knack-- no, a gift-- for storytelling, especially non-fiction. It would do your words justice for them to be shared on a much larger platform than a blog.

    Also, if you're ever looking for a new read, I would be honored if you read my writing. I have some poetry posted to my Wordpress (I left out the short stories/ novels/ children's lit because I found those too lengthy), and if you'd be so kind as to provide me with comments or feedback, I promise it'll be well worth your time.

    Hope all is well,

    Michael Ponce (michaelponce.wordpress.com)

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  14. I love reading these. Can't wait for the next one :)

    I still haven't found my dream, there are so many things that I'd like to do but nothing that I simply excel at. A 'Jill of all trades' is basically what I am. I know someday I'll figure it out but couldn't that someday just be today? :P

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  15. "Leaving Dia was the hardest grown-up decision I had ever made." :'( <3

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  16. I had a similar epiphany while working at Aerpostale. Except it did not lead me to become one of the best bands ever, but I'm now in my last year to become a high school band director :)

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  17. So that is why those store's smell like perfume! I had no idea!

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  18. Michael Ponce (poncemp),

    I read your posting "21st century artist" (first entering the address, later clicking the link, had trouble with the link but probably just my computer). I've posted some "comments" on my wordpress (http://thedaywindowed.wordpress.com/). My comments are weak, but I tried to address/somewhat-counter the idea you presented more than anything. I hope I don't offend (if you do read then I am afraid I will offend if for no other reason than that I have wasted your time with the poor quality of my writing), I most definately do not intend to. They were too long for me to feel like I could rightfully post them on your site or here so I put them on mine. I think your writing is very powerful, my regards as a reader of them.

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  19. i'm kind of in the position now, but i'm working at an atlanta bread (it's just like panera) to save up money for college in nyc this fall. but i'm going for photography which i want to have a career in! hopefully though if i can get a job while i'm in college, it will be a cool internship or a regular job that's not as bad as the one i have now. i actually would rather work retail though. maybe not a place with perfume sprayers though :\ i had no idea that's how they got those stores to smell like that haha. i thought someone walked around with a spray bottle i guess.

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  20. I feel that you have to go through something to actually understand your journey. If you never go through the process and try, you'll never understand or you'll never see the true adventures that is put in front of you. Sometimes our journey's take time to discover who we are and what were doing. As a person we will learn from each experience and that's why so many great songs and poems or even more then this exist. We learn, We discover, We create. Life is the many steps we have to take to get to the point of completion even then one door closes and another opens. =]

    Sadie-

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  21. I really agree with what everyone else is saying -- you should definitely look into finding a publisher and writing either non-fiction or fiction. You are gifted with your words and not only that but you have a deeper sense of life that is reflected through your story-telling. You find meaning in things and I'm sure readers could find something to relate to in your writing -- I know I always do when you write your blogs. :)

    P.S. You and Dia inspired me to get more into literature. So thank you. :)

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  22. I'm glad you're recording all these events. I always wanted to know your story of how it all started and it's great to hear it directly from you. I saw you once at the Abercrombie & Fitch store and I sorely regretted not saying anything to you then as well as the other times I saw you at shows. I'm glad that you and Dia were able to figure out your dreams and go for them. It's inspiring to hear how it all happened. I can't wait for the next installment.

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  23. Your story is really so inspiring to me. I sing a little, not nearly as much or as great as you, but when I do I truly enjoy it. And while both my parents are supportive of me, they both want me to go to college and get a practicle job and life and pretty much disregard singing as anything more than a hobby. I'm still just a teenager, but singing and music makes me happier than anything! I'm still young and have a lot of time to find my place, but thank you for putting your stories out there because it's so interesting and refreshing to see the results of following your dreams. :)

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