Look at this picture!!!! Matt took it at the Peter Tork concert last night, and it was the only picture in the bunch that turned out well...but if I had to choose, I'd rather have this one picture than the dozen slightly blurry concert shots I got. Look at my face...that's pure joy, my friends...the kind of joy that can only be realized through the fulfillment of a lifelong dream. Like everyone else, I have a list of things I want to accomplish in my lifetime, and meeting Peter Tork has been right up there at the top of my list ever since I discovered the Monkees in 1985, a year or so before they went on their anniversary tour. I was 14, and going through a rough patch in my life. My home life wasn't the greatest, and the Monkees' story (that whole not having control over your own destiny thing) really struck a chord in me. Most kids can probably relate to that, but I really took it to heart. And Peter was the one I admired the most, especially after finding out about how much he struggled after the Monkees disbanded. He really inspired me to try to be a better person, corny and stupid as that may sound.
The reason I write this is because despite the euphoria I'm still feeling at finally having done something I've always wanted to do, I really have mixed feelings. The show was fantastic. The experience totally rocked. But after having built it up in my mind for the past 20-odd years, actually meeting Peter was slightly anticlimactic. He signed my cd. We took a picture. And I said to him, "I have been wanting to meet you since 1985." And he said, "Oh, have you?" And smiled. And that was it. And not only that, but there was a young man in line before me, who was obvioulsy developmentally disabled, who kept asking him questions. And Peter finally said to him, "Quit asking me so many questions. You're taking up too much of my time, and I have things I need to do tonight." Not cool, I thought. Never in a million years would I have thought he'd be an ass like that. I wanted to cry, because in a matter of seconds he'd crushed everything I'd ever thought about him. My plan was always that if I ever met him, I wanted to thank him for the profound effect he'd had on my teenage years, because I avoided a lot of things that could have really done me harm because of his influence. Honest to God. He was my hero. But after what I'd just witnessed, I didn't feel like I could trust him with something that came straight from my heart. Sadly enough.
So there it is. Dreams do come true. But they die hard. It's hard to realize that someone you admired for so many years is not only human, but not a very nice one at that. As I type this, I'm feeling a little sad, like I've lost a friend. And I'm feeling a little let down, because after all the years of looking forward to this, it's over now.
I have lots of other things I want to accomplish in life. But I really hope accomplishing them won't be as bittersweet as this. At any rate, I have closed this chapter in my life. No regrets. I've always said in regards to my love of the Monkees, some things you never grow out of. But I admit I was wrong...at 36 years, I guess I've finally grown up.