Crimson and Clover and Cheddar

My trip to Appleton, Wisconsin was my first since the latest unpleasantries in England changed the travel rules. Anticipating a mess at BNA, I left for the airport a couple hours before my 8:30 flight.

I was pleased to discover that security took all of about three minutes, so I found myself in a sleep-deprived (depraved?) haze waiting at the gate. I had checked everything to avoid delays, so I basically stared at the inside of my eyelids until we boarded.

The trip to Detroit was uneventful and quick. After I sprinted across several terminals to make my connection, I settled in to wait for the next boarding call.

As usual, this was a tiny plane with about thirty passengers waiting in the gate. The majority of them were who you would expect to be traveling to Appleton…slightly plump, freshly scrubbed, cheese curd-eating, sensible Midwesterners. But I noticed a peculiar cadre of outliers.

Huddled in the corner of the gate looking extremely uncomfortable and nicotine-starved were about five or six guys with black fingernails, mohawks or reverse mohawks wearing leather pants and biker boots. They looked anxiously nervous, and I couldn’t figure out why. “Maybe they’re scared of really small planes,” I guessed.

It was the Buddy Holly Syndrome as I found out.

By the time we took off, I had overheard that Joan Jett was playing in Appleton and this was her band. They took up the back two rows of the puddle-jumper and kept to themselves for the short flight.

I got off the plane before they did and made my way toward baggage claim. As I left the secured area, I encountered a perky middle-aged cruise director type wearing a yellow foam cheesehead hat and holding up a small white dry-erase board reading “Blackhardt.”

“Are you Mr. Blackhardt?” she asked each person as they passed.

“Nope,” I replied. “But I think who you’re waiting for is right behind me.”

Her eyes grew wide as the musicians finally got their swagger on and strutted down the ramp. One of the boldest ones made the universal rocker devil horn gesture with both hands in the air and exclaimed, “Hello Fox River Vaaaalllley!”

Cheesehead lady recoiled as if punched inthe gut. Then she recovered quickly. “Well there certainly are a lot of you all. Do you have a lot of luggage?”

“We’re a f*cking rock and roll band,” Devil Fingers spat. “Of corse we have a lot of f*cking luggage!”

“Well is much of it oversized? I only brought the Taurus.”

“Just our amps, my bass and his drums. I don’t think your clit-Taurus can handle us, baby.”

“Well then I’ll just go rent us a minivan. Wait here fellas,” she replied earnestly, and put the complimentary welcome cheesehead on the aggro-boy’s head.

You go,Gladys.


11 Responses to Crimson and Clover and Cheddar

  1. bridgett says:

    Hilarious. I love Joan Jett. She was frequently in Cleveland (not just filming that stupid movie), so I saw her a lot during the 1980s.

    She’s been touring all summer with a higher profile tour (Warped), so this was probably the first gig the band had played in a while where the logistics were…well, you know…like they usually are. Being asked to fly red-eye is the first clue that the promoter is going to try to screw you ten ways to Sunday.

    A boyfriend’s mom used to refer to Meatloaf (Paradise by the Dashboard Light) as Mr. Loaf. No lie.

  2. saraclark says:

    Que vague memory from the past…..Joan Jett ate the most ketchup that I have ever seen a human being eat. I remember going throught the catering area and seeing this skinny black haired woman coating her entire plate of food with ketchup and I don’t think any of that food was something that ketchup normally went with. Suddenly the contract rider made a lot more sense.

    Thank you so much for the flashback.

  3. Kat Coble says:

    A boyfriend’s mom used to refer to Meatloaf (Paradise by the Dashboard Light) as Mr. Loaf. No lie.

    That’s how he prefers to be addressed. At least according to his biography. And the several dozen stalking letters I’ve sent him.

    clit-Taurus? I’m sorry, but that’s brilliant in a Jr. High boy way. I love it. Sigh. I should hang out with rockers more often.

    On an unrelated note: cheesecurd is nasty.

  4. John H says:

    Put another dime in the jukebox, baby..

    Please keep up the blogging in the land of cheese.

    Hope the Titans suck a lot less than in previous weeks.

    enjoy the trip..I certainly enjoy reading about your trip.

  5. guvnah says:

    enjoyed reading of your joan jett experience but I must admit, your sea cruise must have been a real treat! Do those advertising people really party like I hear?

  6. Kathy T. says:

    Kat, I beg to differ! Cheese curds are WONDERFUL! 🙂

  7. Kat Coble says:

    Kathy, I’m sorry. But I think they’re squeaky. Literally. They squeak against your teeth.


  8. ceeelcee says:

    Other blogs start debates about Shiites, Sunnis and Kurds.

    I get fights about chees curds.

    I’m so proud!

  9. Blogarita says:

    That’s one of the funniest stories I’ve heard for a while.

    I keep picturing Mrs. Poole (Edie McClurg) as the cruise director type woman.

  10. ceeelcee says:

    She looked just like Edie McClurg.

    Good call.–>

  11. What a valid post. I enjoy reading the posts on this site and will be sure to return on a regular basis.

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