One of the first tests of my teenage life was acquiring tickets to the Bruce Springsteen concert. My friends, KDM and KAW, and I camped out overnight at the Sears in Berwyn (the one with the garbage statue and the car kabob), waited in line at the Ticketron at said Sears, and were rewarded with six tickets to the show.
We went to eat at a pancake house to celebrate our victory, but all three of us had riotous headaches, and KDM even asked if they could dim the light over our table — it was blinding her sleep weary eyes. Each of us seemed locked in some sort of teenage melodrama, and without reason, since we’d gotten the damn tickets, after all, and that had been our quarry.
Maybe we were stunned by our mothers. The resultant headaches were a latent vestige of our victory, not only over the tickets, but over our mothers — a victory that required too little sacrifice. The three of us didn’t have the most permissive of mothers, and when we proposed our scheme, we thought we’d be met with NO. On the contrary, they seemed willing to let the three of us drive to Berwyn, park under the trash sculpture, and sit awake all night in a meager line in order to get our coveted concert tickets. To this day, I can’t figure what made all three of them say YES. We didn’t have to harangue, beg, plead, cajole, or otherwise threaten them with tales of our impending woe if they wouldn’t acquiesce. They simply said, YES.
Perhaps they knew we’d suffer some mild consequences, consequences that seemed less daunting than our iron-willed defiance in the face of NO when it came to The Boss. And perhaps they thought there was safety in numbers, and that the Berwyn Sears parking lot was safe enough for a ragged bunch of teenage girls dying to see the Boss.
In the old days, there was camaraderie and joking, jockeying for position, and the adventure and thrill of the conquest when you had to brave the elements, stay up all night, or otherwise make an effort to see your favorite band. I suppose our Berwyn Sears adventure was silly — and not at all dangerous, but it cemented our friendship, and the bond that one forms while desperately waiting one’s turn at the Ticketron window is one that lasts a lifetime.