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On The Road; My Journey From Philly to Madison Square Garden

January 31, 2009

On The Road
My Journey From Philly to Madison Square Garden

Concert Ticket $44.00
Ticket Master Service Charge $1000.00
1 warm beer purchased at the Garden $1500.00
Seeing the Kings of Leon LIVE: Priceless

CHECK LIST
Wallet? Check! Keys? Check. Cash? Check! I’m Ready…CRAP! Ticket! Where the fuck is my TICKET…oh in my wallet, never mind (checks wallet 3 more times during course of journey).

I’m on the 6:15 NJ Transit train headed for NYC. The car seems to be filled with mostly commuters and no one really resembling a fellow concertgoer. It’s freezing out and the door won’t close, but that’s OK because I know soon enough I’ll be hot and sweaty.

Being one to battle the anxiety demons a few times in my life, a whole list of “worst case scenario’s” run through my head.
1. We covered the forgotten ticket but there’s also the “been sold a fake ticket by some
Savvy hacker/scalper on line.”
2. Lose or have stolen wallet, purse, keys, ID, or all of the above.
3. Journey home-missing the last train out of NY and having to sleep on the plastic bucket chairs at Penn Station.

I’m taking this journey alone tonight. Unfortunately, my friends are not Kings of Leon fans. Not that they wouldn’t be but most of them are knee deep in newborns, rug-rats, and ‘tweens. Their music library pretty much consists of; The Wiggles, Miley Cyrus, and the Jonas Bros. I have attempted to convert them by bombarding their e-mail boxes with video’s, home movies, and chest hair pictures of the boys but alas, their libido’s are on hold until the kids are off to college.

So to soldier through my long journey, I put on my headphones and cue up the “KOL” play list and get myself in concert mode.

The train fills up with more and more people as we near NYC. I can make out who are the concertgoers by their pack mentality and Jared wannabe hairdo’s.
(Check wallet 4th time to make sure ticket didn’t mysteriously fly out.)

The sudden urge to pee overwhelms me. CRAP! Ok, I’m sure I can hold out until NY.
(If you’ve ever peed in a public rest room in NYC you’ll understand my concern. Especially the Woman’s bathroom no offense sisters, but girls are gross.)

I follow the signs for Madison Square Garden. Awesome, I don’t even have to leave the building.
I’m early, there’s hardly anyone here yet. I glide past the first checkpoint. There’s a Merch table ahead and the “FOLLOWILL” T-shirt catches my eye but I decide against it. I already spent enough money on these boys tonight.
Second check point approaches, my stomach drops knowing this is where I will be turned away because of my bogus ticket.
Hmmm…. I stand corrected, the ticket is legit and I’m ushered through the turnstile.
Upon reaching my seat, I am briefly struck by a wave of altitude sickness and immediately sit down. I swallow a few times to relieve the pressure in my ears and scan the stadium. The stage looks like a miniature doll set. I close one eye and pretend to squish Nathan’s drums with my thumb and index finger. This sucks. At least there’s the Jumbotron.

It’s 8pm and The Whigs just took the stage. I have never heard their music before but I’m willing to be open-minded and I’m eager to see them perform.

The lead singer of The Whigs slurs out a greeting to the audience. Their drum set dwarfs in comparison to Nathan’s. I’m sure a lot dwarfs in comparison to what Nathan has to offer.

Stream of consciousness begins:

OK, half way through song one and I’m done. BRING ON THE BOYS!

If this place doesn’t fill up I’m heading down to below cloud level.

The Whigs look cute from way up here, like cute ant people.

The lead singer seems to have some Michael Flately Irish dance moves going on.

OMG! Is the bassist wearing UGGS?!! Oh No-My bad. Phew!

Ok, I’m getting into it now…not really_BRING ON THE KINGS!!!!!

The Whigs have officially moved from cute ants to sexy ants.

The smoke machine just started, unless Nathan just lit a spliff behind the stage.

Hmmmm I wonder if Nate is left-handed. The drummer for The Whigs has his mike to the right-hand side; Nathan’s is to the left. I noticed while watching the home movies it looked like he was golfing left-handed…did I just write that? I sense a vague hint of stalker behavior in that sentence.
(Note to self: Stop by Bellevue Hospital before heading home.)

The Whig’s “are happy to be here and will now do something off their first album,” so they tell me and the other 4 people in the audience.

Wow this guy is amazing. He’s been dancing around on one leg while playing the guitar for a good 3 minutes. It reminds me of the guys who hung outside the Methadone clinic across the street from my apartment. They could hold a Karate Kid pose for like an hour, it was very impressive.

I love it when rockers do that Mick Jagger thing with their arms. They look all lanky and double-jointed with a touch of cerebal-palsyness. The Whiggles guy just did that (Caleb does it better).

Time check! 8:17! What??? Only 15 minutes went by???

I think I just saw a roadie put a cooler next to Nathan’s drums, wow. Maybe not. but probably.

I wonder if Caleb is puking.

OK, I’m having one of those “I can’t believe I’m actually here,” moments.

As of now I do not have an obstructed view, which is very cool.

OMG! Was that Nathan that just walked by??? No.
(REMINDER: Bellevue)

INTERMISSION

I figure I should make another bathroom run because I know if I go during the concert I will miss something crucial like Nathan doing his first solo or Caleb announcing he’s growing his hair long again.

I head out and walk a mile before I find the first Woman’s bathroom. The line is scary long and all of a sudden I really have to GO. Luckily it moves quickly. I race to the open stall where my theory has been confirmed-women are gross.

I get back to my seat and watch the crew set up. Nacho expertly tapes the cords in place. I don’t really hear any of the famous NACHO chants I’ve heard about. But then again maybe the sound just hasn’t traveled up here yet. I’ll give it another 30 min.

Oh God! I see my view obstruction heading towards me. Damn, he’s got to be 6’4 and he’s acting like an asshole. What a tool. I have no problem kicking him in the back of the head if need be.

Nacho is tuning Matt’s guitar and there’s that cool white bass Jared plays. I would think being a roadie would be a sucky job. But then again I just don’t like to do any sort of heavy lifting, or taping, or cleaning for that matter. I wonder if there are any girl roadies?

The tool and his friends are all tall.

I wonder if the mic height is based on how tall they are. From this level that would make Matthew and Jared ¼” tall and Caleb ¾” tall.

Time check 9:07!!!!WTF!!!
Put down the Bong Nathan, and get your ass out here!

Right now I have the perfect view but I know the John Mayer look-alike Tool Boy and the rest of his kit will ruin it, tall bastards.

As for the crowd…
OMG! HERE COMES KOL!

WOOOOHOOOO!

Again, overwhelming feeling: I can’t believe I’m here!!!!

CRAWL
Ah the sweet smell of pot just filled the stadium, must be Nathan’s natural scent.

TAPER JEAN GIRL
Eh, not a big fan of this song

MY PARTY
This song bugs me because of the whole Rachael Bilson thing…what? Come on dude!

Caleb looks really pumped. And he’s wondering around the stage a lot. I didn’t think they moved. They’re all in their standard black and grey. I love Caleb in a vest. He’s having a good hair night. Jared and Matthew are in leather jackets looking hot (I mean literally).
Jared has some tentacles hair thing happening but it looks cute. He’s got some patchy scruff going on but that too looks good.
(Don’t give up on it honey, you got to go through the bad to get to the good, if not there’s always beard extensions.)

I love it when Caleb mimes the songs, even the hearing impaired can enjoy their live performance. Very generous.

MOLLY’s CHAMBERS

Goddamn people who show up late. Knocking into me, grrrr
It is now officially packed! Wow, Matt is rocking Molly. Go Matty.
CLOSER

Hmm it’s Jared playing the casio not Nacho. Oh well.

Mmm more pot sme…..CRAP!!! Another tall guy just got here and he’s taller then the tool kit squad!!!  Is this the song where Matt plays the guitar with his mouth? Tool Guys prevented me from seeing that.

FANS!

MY FAV, I love this song.

REVELRY

A big smile comes across Caleb’s face when the audience sings along. No doubt he’s having a similar “Oh my God I can’t believe I’m here,” moment.

MILK

Another one of my fav’s.

They show fancier video’s on the Jumbtron when the play songs from OBtN album.

The view of the jumbtron is obstructed by the speakers and I can only see half of Nathan but even half a Nathan is still Hot.

I think I’m sweating just as much as Caleb.

Matt’s hair seems a lot longer. I like it better like this.

Caleb is putting his sweat rag to good use.

FOUR KICKS

Oooo cool light show.
Jared goes into headshake mode. Awesome.

WASTED TIME

Eh, I’d rather hear Soft. Matt is rockin out. But when doesn’t he rock out, really.

Caleb SPEAKS!!!
He tells me (ok us, whatever) He’s been dreaming of this moment his whole life.
Through out he thanks everyone over and over. Seems very humble.

Tells everyone to sing along to the next song and we oblige.

SEX ON FIRE

You can hardly hear Caleb sing, especially during the chorus. Caleb seems to get a kick out of this.

My one complaint is there is way too much video of Caleb only. They showed one shot of Jared and I thought my ears were gonna bleed from the girly squeals.

Nate should have a jumbotron dedicated only to him.
I don’t know why they don’t use the jumbotron in the middle. That would’ve been perfect.

(MUST kill Tool. Luckily he only knows songs off of OBtN, He’s freaking out right now).

SLOW NIGHT SO LONG

Oooo Caleb is doing that little dance; he looks like he’s sneaking up behind someone to scare the crap out of him or her. The sneaky dance. TOO CUTE!!!

He’s traveling all over the stage giving the side crowd their own little show.

THE BUCKET

Right now is the time to see them on tour. There’s not a stinker in their song catalog.
Who knows, 20 years from now we may all have to suffer through a Rolling Stones “Steel Wheels” type promotional concert tour just to get to the classics. That and “Caleb Followill Rock of Love,” are my biggest fears.

Tool boy has no idea what this song is.
“Bucket? What Bucket? Why the fuck is he singing about a bucket?”

NOTION

I’ve neglected this song; I have to listen to it more, and again with the awesome video during a latest album song. Caleb is displaying some extra sexy raspiness in his voice during this song. I definitely noticed more clarity and confidence in his singing

MCFEARLESS

Mmm yummy spliff just lit up 2 rows ahead.

ON CALL

Ewww gross, Caleb just spit. Hmmm there’s something about this song he doesn’t like. He’s doing some kind of hand gesture thing to the sound guy. Or else he’s telling Jared to steal home.

USE SOMEBODY

Holy crap the crowd is going bonkers!!!!!
Americans definitely know more from this album then any other album. A little from Because of the Times but not much.

Having a moment….”can’t believe I’m here”…. continue

COLD DESERT

Looks like all the boys around me in the audience are taking the opportunity to make a play on their dates. Interesting. OOPS! Some guy just brushed up against my boob when he walked by, there’s my play for the evening.

TRANI

Clove cigarette smell fills the air.

Wow, this isn’t the reaction I was expecting. Again this is Americans not familiar with anything but their most recent stuff. And where is Jared’s screaming freak-out head banging, gyrating moment. I’m so disappointed. Caleb delivered though.

ENCORE

OOOOOO NATE! Guzzles and chucks!!!
SWEET JESUS!
HOW MUCH HOTTER CAN YOU GET!

I’ve made a new friend while we wait for the encore, a sweet woman who got tickets at the very last minute. She asks me who my favorite King is, Duh… Look at me; I look like I just walked out of Woodstock with all my hippie bohemianess going on. NATE LOVER right here!!!

KNOCKED UP

MANHATTAN
Caleb tells the crowd. This is the Biggest and Best moment of his life. So sweet.

CHARMER
I love this video. Caleb is reenacting it on stage as we speak.

BLACK THUMBNAIL

I think I actually had a little orgasm when he said, “Guitar Go Get Her”!

Wow, Jared booked off stage, maybe he has to pee.
Oh, there’s my beloved Nate front and center. Look at those fucking arms. I just want to lick his TATTS!

Caleb does his cute little double hand wave and throws some lucky soul his sweat rag.
I wonder how much that will go for on Ebay.

Good-bye boys. No doubt they are off to some fabulous after party filled with celebs and beautiful people. I hope they had a blast cause I sure did.

EXODUS
(…Yes, there’s more)

I swear I am being physically carried down the steps of the escalator and out the door by the mass of people exiting the Garden. How the hell did I get outside? My goal was not to leave the building. Oh well, I walk around the corner to get back into Penn Station. I stop at Nathan’s Hot Dogs and get a Nathan’s Lemonade. OMG! Did I subconsciously stop here? Hmmmm… too ladylike to make any Nathan’s Hot Dog jokes but definitely
wondering if his tattoo’s taste like lemonade. Yes, it’s my fantasy and they most definitely do.
I make my way to NJ Transit gate area and wait for the 11:40 train to Trenton. I eavesdrop on a group of girls who are imitating Calebs sneaky dance and listen to them trying to mimic his hi-pitch squeal that ends up being a lot more annoying then cute. I watch a group of young boys in their tight jeans and long hair pretend to watch the monitor while sneaking glimpses of the girls and their antics. Supportive fathers who escorted their sons to the concert are now stressing over the train schedule departure times.

I get on a double-decker commuter train and take the first seat I can find. The girl next to me rolls and unrolls the KOL poster she bought, and the boy in front of me calls his mom to tell her he’s on his way home and says, “It was beyond words, Mom.”

I’m kind of glad I have a long commute ahead of me. I’m still wired and my left eyeball is burning. I’m left handed and it’s only my left eyeball that ever hurts. I wonder if Nathan’s left eyeball ever hurts him.

DAMN…. I forgot to stop at Bellevue.

Thanks Guys!
You are blessed.

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3 Responses to “On The Road; My Journey From Philly to Madison Square Garden”

  1. mica Says:

    i love your post!! i’m dying with envy haha! i’m a big KOL fan too but i live halfway across the globe so i doubt i’ll get to see their show soon.

  2. Chichi Says:

    I loved your review of the concert – it was hilarious (it was posted on Happy Alone.) There was a whole group of people from the forum who met up at NYC to see KOL….too bad you didn’t meet them. Maybe next time!

    Come on Happy Alone and talk to us some time. We’re all completely obsessive fans and love to talk about the band all day!!


  3. Social comments and analytics for this post…

    This post was mentioned on Twitter by IAHemingway: hey guys reposting another classic and pretty sure a fan fave. http://bit.ly/8WY229 Madison Sq. Garden. Plz RT 4 the peeps unfamiliar w IAH…


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