I started listening to Say Anything because of a shitty ex boyfriend who emotionally damaged me for years and almost ruined my marriage. The only good thing he ever did for me was introduce me to this band that would change my life. I know it sounds quite melodramatic and cliche but i can assure you, its true.
I went to my first Say Anything show at the Glasshouse back in 2006. I attended by myself and was in the front row; I was that girl- the one who knew every word to every song and loudly sang along with an ear to ear grin. At 20 years old, I was happy to have the lead singer of my favorite band (Max Bemis) shimmy and shake in front of me, who cares if i got sprayed with spit and sweat?! Since then I have attended every southern california Say Anything show but not without incident.
I was young, happy and invincible- or so i thought. Little did I know I was just young and drunk. I attended one show in LA (again by myself) where I got drunk, made friends with a random nice gentleman (who luckily was just that) and had a great time. Then as Im on the phone walking to my car I see Max and friends walking and drunken me “whispers” into my phone, “there he is, hes right in front of me, what should i do?” Needless to say I did not meet Max that night and drove the hour drive home. I made it safely. Thank God.
The next night I asked a friend to drive me to the show so I could drink and not have to worry about driving home. That was a smart decision on my part- I thought I was being responsible. Well as we are driving home we skid across four lanes and hit the center divider head on. That was the absolute scariest moment of my life. My friend had a DUI and for years our friendship was tarnished. I spent Thanksgiving in sweat pants that year not by choice but because I could barely move from being so sore from the accident.
Another show I went to I asked a different friend to drive me- he willingly did and stayed sober. I saw Max walk by on the street but was to scared to say anything (pun intended) until he had passed- and then I told my friend, “oh hey.. that was him.” I did not meet Max that night
Then there was the Ventura Warped Tour. There I was 122 miles from home..by myself, front row. I had a great time and after the show Max shook my hand but i was too dumbfounded to even speak (I dont consider this meeting Max.) After I spent the rest of the day enjoying great bands I walk to where I had parked only to find that my car had been towed. I had to wait the two+ hours for my mom to get there then we slept in her car til morning to get my car out.
I was just a 20 year old reckless, starstruck kid when i started listening to SA but its been a crazy and almost surreal adventure to grow up with the music. Sometimes I felt (like most people do with music) that he wrote those songs about my exact situation. I met Andrew (my most amazing husband who I am lucky to have, hes my partner in crime and my SA show buddy now) shortly after Max and Sherri (Eisley) were married. So obviously I can still relate and internalize all the songs. Now I’m a 28 year old woman who has a respect and admiration for an artist who has grown into a family man and so much more. Going to SA shows has introduced me to some of my other favorite bands (Manchester Orchestra, Fake Problems) and I even found the most perfect song to dance with Andrew to for our wedding vow renewal ceremony, Eisley’s ‘Kind’
So obviously at last nights show I was kind of a mess when my friend pulled me over to meet Max and take my picture with him..it wasnt at all what id hoped for (me being the cool kid with the leather jacket, “hey… sup.” head nod. and then we’d smoke a bowl, have a drink and be best friends.. hey a girl can dream!!) but I’m just happy that I met Max… finally!