There are three things I remember about the Dashboard Confessional, Thrice and The Get Up Kids concert in San Jose, California in 2004:
- Chris Carrabba stopped the show mid-song and threatened to beat up my friend
- We missed The Get Up Kids, the band I most wanted to see, due to a speeding ticket
- A motel bathtub full of alcohol
All other details have been filled in by friend’s memories. It’s good to have friend’s memories corroborate an event like this, because, really, it makes for a very strange story.
Where do we start?
Highway 101 north of San Luis Obispo.
I sat in the back seat of a smelly car full of high school graduates. We were 18 year olds, idyllic in our fresh angst, speeding with the radio loud, bags of Doritos strewn, gas station fountain drinks in hand — all those cliche snacks from youth I’m still waiting to outgrow — we had what seemed a never ending supply.
Socially, I was a man of many cliques. Never a big partier, a little alcohol at a friend’s house, say, but never could I stomach drunkenness or drugs. What I was was morally malleable. This meant I could make a go at any social gathering with decent success. This particular 2004 outing was unique, socially speaking, for merging three disparate friend groups. I had my party friends, my church friends, and my actual friends. I remember sitting in that backseat with the sobering and unmasking feeling that comes with your friends meeting your other very different friends.