"shower? comb your hair?" he suggests.
"funny," i say.
"you teed it up," he says. "i just drove it down the fairway."
my cousin calls me at 9 a.m. monday morning with an urgent voicemail message, then acts surprised when i don't make contact with him until 1 p.m.
"hi, i'm christa. i sleep until noon," i remind him.
"right," he says. i can almost hear him smacking his palm against his forehead. "so, do you wanna go or not?"
"yes," i say.
"because if you don't i can invite someone else ..." he says.
"no. i want to go," i say.
"really? you REALLY want to go the john mayer concert?" he says incredulously.
"uh huh," i say. "big time."
"you LIKE john mayer?" he asks.
"no," i say. "not at all."
why i want to drive 2 1/2 hours to see john mayer
disclaimer: i am way too cool to like john mayer. one pair of candy lips and a bubble gum tongue? please. it sounds like something i wrote in a pink puppy journal in 1987. he was all hair and guitar and baby fat and frankly he way too prepackaged love lyrics and microwaveable saccharine.
then he disavowed all of this to become broody pot smoker with a reputation for being a complete prick, which is a slightly more attractive set of qualities for a celebrity.
then i started reading his blog which is this fantastic, sarcastic and funny collection of bedlam. he suggests that one way for grey's anatomy to handle homophobic comments made by isaiah washington would be to have dr. burke to be rewritten as a gay character. one day he posted a warning that he was going out drinking:
Tonight I will be traveling with my damageman, Elliott M. Turnbull. A damageman, for those who don't know, is a fellow, normally of British descent, who carries wads of cash and peels off bills to pay for things I broke or soiled. It's like a PR rep except Elliott works at the source, where the bad press begins. One tuck of a Grant into the bar manager's shirt and a light slap on the cheek, and it's like the whole thing never happened. A lot.
he also posts an interview where he is asked if he ever purchased a jessica simpson cd. he avoids choking on his own fist by answering: i lisen (sic) to most new music released every week.
my only fault with this interview, i wish he'd responded: i wouldn't even limewire that shit.
1. so. not only am i too cool to like john mayer as a musician, i am also cool enough to admit that john mayer is a fantastic blogger. i envision the show from a different perspective: i am not travelling to st. paul to see john mayer, architect of the tedius room for squares in concert. i'm going to support a wicked blogger who will be strumming a guitar. hopping around on stage in an outfit that suggests it is, again, cool to be a slacker.
2. the spontaenous nature of the trip has me oogly googly with love for my cousin. had he called a month in advance, i would have come down with psychosomatic chicken pox 15 minutes before go-time. but 30 hours lead time? that makes me want to run through the halls of my high school and scream at the top of my lungs ...
as i've said before: the best way to get me to not show up to your party is to invite me in advance.
3. mat kearney is opening. he was once the backdrop music for a poignant scene on grey's anatomy. yum.
3. the idea of being in the same venue as jessica simpson -- or at least the player who gets to poke her -- has me reeling. i absolutely love jessica simpson.
"what if, after tonight, i start to like john mayer?" i ask chuck tuesday morning.
"i won't judge you," he says. "just don't start listening to dave matthew's band."
drive 105 on I35
on the way to st. paul i'm enjoying two jalapino cheese burgers, cheese sticks and chicken rings and right when i think life can't possibly get any better than a white castle drive thru window in hinckley, i hear on the radio that the dj on drive 105 ran into john mayer and JESSICA SIMPSON at a minneapolis bar on monday night. jessica is now a brunette. but more importantly, the best-dressed breasts in hollywood are being exposed to the same 20 degree temps as me RIGHT NOW!
jcrew is speed dialed:
"OHMYGOD!" i squeal into her voicemail. "JESSICASIMPSONISINTOWNWITHJOHNMAYER! OHMYGODDITY GOD!"
later, she returns my call and says:
"i wonder why john mayer likes jessica simpson?"
"same reason we like jessica simpson," i say.
"i mean, she's so stupid and he seems kind of smart," she says. "why does he like her?"
"same reason we like her," i repeat.
"the fantastic rack?" jcrew suggests.
"the same reason we like her."
my cousin apparently has freakishly long legs. we are a little late and he is click clacking down the streets of st. paul in an expensive pair of noisy shoes. i have to jog to keep up with him.
"does it make me a snob that i don't ever want to date a person who is poor?" he asks.
"nah," i say.
mat kearney is okay. his main dance move involves shuffling from center stage to a piano. i like one song by him, but the rest seems like poorly conceived cheesey white boy rap.
"did he just change the lyrics of this song to rap about minnesota?" my cousin asks.
"seems like maybe he did," i say.
"he sounds like cold play," my cousin says. pauses. "i kinda wish he'd sing some coldplay instead."
as soon as john mayer takes the stage i turn to my cousin excitedly. eyes wide. the pure exhuberance of someone who likes john mayer as more than just a blogger. i feel great shame. i get giddy when he plays songs from his first cd. songs i hate when they carom out of my radio. who am i?
i decide that john mayer should be playing dirty bars off dirtier roads instead of large venues. large venues, i decide, should be reserved for people who use pyrotechnics and backup dancers in sequined bandeau tops and knee high boots. not guitar players shuffling around in tube socks beneath a single spotlight. booooring.
then came my worst-favorite part of an concert: the encore. this tired tradition annoys the fuckola out of me. i took a stand, refused clap and hoot and try to coax him back on the stage.
just once i want to go to a show where the singer says: eh. you guys have been mediocre at best. (throws his guitar pick at the nakedest fan) i'm done.
but then he plays it. the reason for the season. the song of all songs. first he prefaces it with a reluctant: i wrote this when i was 22.
as if he is ashamed. he should be.
then i find myself weeping through "your body is a wonderland."