Dia drove up to Salt Lake City, bringing with her precious cargo: the 995 demo cds we had left from our first and only printing of the "Our Home is Gone" record. ( I think my parents bought 2, and we maybe sold the other 3 cds at one of our hometown shows.)
I promised Dia a band, an entire west-coast tour of booked shows, and an interested and flashy manager by the time she dropped her suitcases on my doorstep. Truth was, all I had waiting for her was a cold spanish omelet and hours of unfinished English homework.
She didn't complain at all. We settled into a routine in SLC, eating, sleeping, and then repeating. I think I must had dropped out of college about the time she came up. I knew a few adventurous girlfriends around town to cause trouble with. I started dating someone, became relatively serious, relatively quickly, so he took up a lot of my time as well.
Everything changed one day after an unfortunate accident in the Smith's parking lot. I had gone around doing some spring cleaning, finishing up some errands: laundry, grocery shopping, and what not. For some reason I remember being in a real intense rush after my grocery shopping. After I loaded in my bunch of turnips and whole milk into the trunk, I turned the keys in the ignition, and without even glancing up into my rearview mirror, zoomed out of that space like an aircraft late for a tea party. I slammed into a poor innocent woman's car searching for a convenient parking space. (Please, hold your "bad Asian-driving" comments please… Heard enough of those.)
Of course, the woman reacted violently and swiftly, calling the necessary authorities along with her concerned husband. "Yes, yes. I'm fine. What? Yes, she is. Well, she's one of those- " At this point, her voice lowered. She must have been trying to explain to her husband that the offender in question looked to be a scroungy ragamuffin in her late teens, looking to be as lost as the next wandering musician, and that they shouldn't be too hard on my crushed soul or she'll just keel over, or something close to that effect, I'm sure.
Needless to say, I got off easy. The cops came, they wrote me a little paper thingy which I crumpled up and tossed in the back seat. If my memory serves me correctly, I think the lady, whose day I had ruined, actually waved goodbye while I drove away from the crime scene.
My friend Steve happened to call me on my drive back to my apartment. I explained to him the dire situation that had just taken place. He had just the anecdote. "You need to drive to "Price Autoshop" in South Salt Lake. Ask for Nick. I've actually been wanting you and Dia to meet him for awhile now. So maybe this is a good thing. He's a fantastic Drummer Man!"
So, I picked up Dia and some demo cds to meet this "fantastic Drummer Man" and perhaps score a deal on my busted bumper before my parents flip out next Christmas break. We pulled up to this curious family-owned operation, walked through the entrance gate to spot a casual looking young man with his legs lounged up on the desk. In the memory I've sugar-coated since then, I redirected this scene with him wearing long overalls on and chewing straw between his teeth. In real life, he wore a full-body, one piece, American-blue jumpsuit with the name tag "Price Auto" neatly fastened on his left breastpocket.
|Ya'll already know this guy. And yes we ARE currently dating, and yes this is our "how we met for this first time..." story:)|
He must have been expecting us. I swear he jumped straight over the desk with his legs that went on forever, light as a feather and acrobatic as a circus performer. Without an ounce of shyness, he walked right up to my sad bumper and gave me an immediate estimate of what the cost of a new bumper for my make and model would be. After hearing that frightening number, I decided that I thought the huge chunk missing in my bumper was kind of cute and rather endearing actually, and I had grown quite attached, and I'd rather not get it replaced after all.
The conversation turned to mine and Dia's musical dream. We both became starry eyed while we told our new friend what we intended to do with our lives. He didn't seem skeptical at all like we thought he would be. We sold Nick a cd right out of our trunk.
At the end of our explanation, Dia paused, and looked at Nick right straight in the eye. Her voice took on a solemn tone, and some melodic and suspenseful background music began to play as she took one step toward Nick and shook a stiff finger in his face. "Now, we are really serious you hear? We need to know that you are with us, ALL the way. We plan on traveling many moons across America to sing for people, to show them a little somethin'."
Nick didn't lose eye contact the entire time Dia recited her soliloquy. After she finished, he kicked a pebble in the dirt, hiked up his cargo shorts a little, and with a quick and efficient nod, he huffed, "I'm in."