My husband is from Jersey and sometimes you’ve just got to embrace its many strengths–Sloppy Joes, Taylor Ham, Jersey Tomatoes, Bon Jovi, and BRUCE! So last weekend I spent two nights enjoying the fine music of Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band in their native land. For a mom of an 18 month old, one night out til 2am is impressive, but two nights in a row is just plain crazy! Who do I think I am? I was dying last Sunday, but it was definitely worth it. Friday night’s concert included a train ride out from Manhattan (see above for my American flag clad seat-mate), some high class tailgating–real wine glasses–under a blue sky with my aunt and uncle, and a 3:10 show with a great but different set list. We eventually made our way down to better (read: not our own) seats, which happened to belong to a friend from college…small world. But the contraband seats didn’t stop me from Irish stepping in the aisle to the last song and a personal favorite: American Land.
On Saturday, we kicked off our rainy parking lot tailgate early– this time with siblings and cousins–and made it authentically Jersey by chowing down on Sloppy Joes from the Millburn Deli. Saturday’s show had all of the ingredients of an epic evening–Bruce turning 63 at midnight, being the 3rd of 3 nights at MetLife, and capping off the band’s last concert before a month-long tour break. However, Mother Nature had her own plans. We headed to our seats around 8:30, only to see the entire floor of the arena was empty. Not a good sign. Soon after we were forced to evacuate to the tunnels under the stadium (due to dangerous lightning in the area) for a nice 2 hour wait.
Once they issued the green light, my sister had a brilliant idea: rush onto the floor for a spot near the stage. We shuffled straight past the security guards as if we belonged there. Luckily, in the chaos they were no longer checking bracelets. We dashed to a barricade close to the stage and secured the perfect spot to dance the night away. Despite the fact that it rained throughout and I was nearly elbowed in the face by the crazy fist-pumping of a maniacal fan next to me, it was a blast. We were doubly rewarded for our sneakiness when Bruce came down from the stage and climbed onto a platform directly in front of us while singing “In the Midnight Hour”. I tried desperately to get him to grab my hand, but the best I managed was taking a video and touching his foot. At midnight, everyone sang Happy Birthday to Bruce, and he claimed that the last time he played live on his birthday was before the cell phone was invented!
The Saturday setlist was a great mix of oldies, an awesome rendition of “Pay me My Money Down” (been singing this all week to myself), and some of my faves from the Wrecking Ball album. I still can’t talk about the fact that we left early, missing 14 songs because we had to get home to our babysitter before 2am, but such is life. It was still a fabulous weekend and, let’s not forget, I got to touch the Boss’ shoe. You can’t beat that.
Photos courtesy of the trusty iPhone