The Contest (Part 1 of 2)

In August I entered a contest.  I never win anything, but the minute I hit the “send” button, I knew I had won.  I am somewhat of a sensitive and have recently recovered some of my sensitivities, but this story is not about that.  I am just telling you that I knew I was going to win. I was on my way to Hartsfield-Jackson Airport, using Uber, at 6:00am, headed to Boston to retrieve Mini Me from his five week stay at Boston’s prestigious Berklee College of Music.  He had been awarded a partial scholarship for their five week summer program.  He had to take so much shit with him that one of us had to go up with him and one of us had to go get him and bring him back, so that we could carry-on his extra shit. Anyway.  I was checking Facebook, and saw that Third Man Records was having a contest.  It was for gold and platinum Vault members only.  I happen to be a Platinum Vault member.  Mainly because you have to be 18 and Mini Me is not.  Also, Mini Me cannot pay the $60 fee that occurs every 3 months.  We do get amazing stuff every 3 months–stuff that cannot be bought in the Third Man storefront, nor can it be ordered.  It is all special stuff.  Let me back up for those of you who may not be familiar with Third Man Records.  It is the record label of legendary musician Jack White, formerly of The White Stripes, presently of The Racounteurs and The Dead Weather and probably some other bands that I can’t think of off the top of my head.  Plus, he produces a lot of other stuff and does a lot of other stuff.  It’s just all too much for me to write about.   Third Man Records is based in Nashville, Tennessee.  So…the contest was this:  The Dead Weather was coming out with a new album.  Third Man was having a listening party on Monday, August 10.  All I had to do was send my name and my email that was connected to my Vault account.  Done and done. Winners would get to bring 1 guest.  My plus 1 would be Mini Me, since he started out as our family’s number 1 Jack White fan.  Now he and I fight over that title. We eat, sleep and breathe Third Man Records at Chèz Psychomother.  Anyway.  I was in like Flynn and I knew it.  Today was August 7.  And I was headed to Boston.  And Mini Me had just missed the entire first week of regular school.  Shitola.  Oh well.  Maybe I hadn’t won.  I would cross that bridge when I got to it.   I got to the airport and flew to Boston.  When the plane landed, I checked my phone.  There was a text from Mini Me.  It had a link to the Third Man contest, and said “Hey Mom, PLEASE enter this contest!”  I answered him back, “Already did that. Just landed. Don’t get your hopes up.”   I got Uber to my hotel, checked in, and ordered a light lunch from room service (because I absolutely loove room service, dahling). I had forgotten about the contest for the moment.  I went to the gym, because I am obsessive like that, and then went back to the room and showered.  Mini Me was still in his last classes at Berklee, so there was no need for me to rush over to him.  I was drying my hair and decided to check my email on my phone to pass some time.  There it was.  “Congratulations Vault Member! You’ve Won!”  Holy shit.  I knew it. I knew it.  My intuitions were on like Donkey Kong.  Oh Lord.  I had not even told JC I had entered this contest, but in my defense, if you will remember, I entered it on my way to the airport, and I had gone to the airport, to Boston, to the gym,  and now I was back in my room, so I had not actually had time to tell anyone. Plus, who would have believed me if I had said, “Hey, I entered this contest and I happen to just know I am going to win it, so we need to go ahead and make all the arrangements?”  I tried to call him. No answer.  I texted him.  He answered.  He was in a meeting.  He thought it was awesome.  He also thought Mini Me and I should drive to Nashville on Sunday and get a hotel room and spend the night, instead of driving up and back to Nashville on Monday…..awesome husband I have. I do love that man. The next thing was to call the principal of Mini Me’s school.  Now, the only thing I had going for me there was that I happen to be president of the PTSA this year.  Mini Me has done himself no favors at school.  I guarantee that if I were not doing anything at the school, this situation would not have gone over well at all.  This is not to say that I got any special favors by being PTSA president, because I certainly did not.  I’m just saying that by volunteering my time, the school knew more about me as a person.  They knew I was not an absentee parent of an obstinate kid.  They know me and maybe they feel sorry for me because I have an obstinate kid… At any rate, I made the call.  The principal laughed and told me that Mini Me was to have no more fabulousness this year!  I assured her that I would try my hardest not to let any more fabulousness happen.  I was so excited at this point that I could hardly contain myself. What I think I failed to tell you is that not only  was this a listening party for The Dead Weather’s new album that was not going to be released until mid-September, but The Dead Weather was actually going to BE there with us!  That meant that Jack White was actually going to be there, in the flesh. I was not going to call Mini Me.  I would tell him in person.  I started rushing to get ready.   I decided that I could walk the three blocks from The Hotel Commonwealth to Berklee faster than calling Uber, so I started hoofing it up Commonwealth to Mass Ave. When I got to Berklee, I walked in and looked around. At first, I thought I probably just blended in. BWAHAHAHA.  Let me rephrase that.  At first, I hoped  I just blended in.  I had not felt so old   in a while.   I stood there with my sunglasses on, inside the main lobby and just looked around at the kids for a minute.  Then I heard Mini Me’s familiar voice say, “Mom!”  I had not seen him in 5 weeks.  I turned and there he was.  He looked a little older and perhaps a little wiser, I must say.  It seemed to me he had grown another 3 inches, making him tower over me even more than he already had.  We hugged.  I stood there and stared at him.  I could not stand the suspense any longer.  “Well,”  I said, “Do you think you could go to Nashville with me on Monday?”  He just looked at me with this look of complete shock on his face.  It was one of the only  times I have ever rendered Mini Me speechless.  “WE WON?” he said.  “NO!” I said, “I WON, and you are my plus one, ” I said, emphasizing that I was the one who won, and that he had nothing to do with it.  “OH MY GOD ARE YOU SERIOUS?” he said.  I said that yes, I was serious and I showed him the email.  I told him I had already cleared it with school, etc.  Unfortunately, that took over any excitement that he may have had about my coming to Boston to take him home from his awesome five weeks at Berklee.  I felt kind of bad about that.  He had a really fabulous time at Berklee,  and had made the top ten in the Singer/Songwriter Showcase.  I hated for this contest to overshadow something that had been such an integral part of his education, but life seems to be one experience after another, and we just have to roll with it.  So, we did.

Read the conclusion of this story in  “Two Jack’s and a Jen” Up Next on thepsychomother.com

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