“This will be the best 4 seconds of my life.” Really??? My husband made this pronouncement this morning in advance of the upcoming meet and greet with Bruce. What about…hmmm…the birth of your children, marrying me, etc.? “Okay, the fourth best 4 seconds of my life.” Better. “What AM I going to wear?” Oh, Thom, settle down. Bruce is just a normal guy. “No. He. Is. Not. He is THE BOSS.” Okay, I get it and so the day began.
Social media is powerful and Thom and I are wired almost every hour of the day so we found out quickly that Bruce Springsteen was going to make Seattle one of the few stops on his book tour to promote his new autobiography, Born to Run. WOW. At exactly 10 a.m. several weeks ago, we both were logged in to Elliott Bay Book Company with fingers poised and pounced on tickets (cost of the book) to get a ticket to meet Bruce, get a photo and a pre-signed book. Sold out in several minutes, tickets were later going for up to $600 on StubHub and wannabes were circling the lines today to meet Bruce begging to buy tickets or be the “plus one” for a ticket holder to meet Bruce. No way!
I have to say that Elliott Bay Book Company had a big challenge and they did an awesome job communicating the rules often and in advance of the big event, as well as being staffed well, organized and friendly on the big day. We arrived at 10 a.m., 2 hours prior to the start time of the event and promptly got into a line with hundreds of others already lined up. We promptly fell into conversation with a lovely couple, Ollie and Fletcher, who had come up from Northern California and Tacoma. Fletcher told us stories of her dad’s love for Bruce and how, though her car had just been stolen and she was busy finishing up her degree, they had made time for this experience. Their dream is for Ollie to retire from her job and stay home to raise the kids they hope to have. They were lovely and I hope their dreams come true.
Finally, as the line moved forward, we got our blue wristbands and hands stamped in the bookstore and moved to another line, the “blue” line. By this time, we were two hours in and nature called. so off I ran to the nearest coffee shop while Thom held our place in line and made new friends, some old rockers who knew every Bruce song. Making it back in time to continue our journey towards Bruce, Thom was still in an altered state, so excited to meet his rock hero. We debated what to say in our 4 seconds with Bruce. Thom settled on thanking him for writing the songs that made up the soundtrack of his life-from the heart and meaningful.
As we gained entry to the bookstore and out of the rain that had started, we saw signs proclaiming “180 more steps to Bruce” and so forth and posters where you could share your favorite song, where you were from, your favorite Seattle sight/restaurant, etc. to keep you engaged while inching closer to The Boss. They even provided a “Spruce for Bruce” mirror to make sure you were still looking good for your photo opp. Great job, Elliott Bay, you pulled off a wonderful experience for everyone.
The bookstore staff quickly checked belongings and took your camera/phone from you so you were unencumbered and they could take the picture. Bruce was warm and friendly just like I thought he would be. Instead of a heartfelt comment, I chose to be honest but made him laugh with a sincere compliment, “You are TOO CUTE!” and then followed with a plea to keep the pressure on Trump. Seriously, HRC needs all the help she can get. He chuckled and hugged me tight and then we were done. It was truly a great 4 seconds. Afterward, we hopped over to EDM to get his new album that is the musical companion to his book that features 5 previously unreleased songs called, Chapter and Verse.
Bruce, it was great meeting you. You are a spectacular talent and inspiration to generations of fans, including me. Thom loves you too. Well done.