Archive for June 2015

By the Seat of my Pants

June 14, 2015

I wonder if I have ever told you the full story of how I proposed to Heather. Maybe you know I proposed to her at a Lucero concert at the Rev Room in Little Rock on December 21, 2011. If you have not seen those videos, they are on YouTube, here and here. It was definitely one of the most important nights of my life, and it was exhilarating, but it came close to not happening.

I had e-mailed the manager of Lucero a few months beforehand, explaining my plan. I told him I knew Heather would say yes (we had discussed marriage at length beforehand and both knew we wanted it). He said he would pass along the message to the band and see what they thought. Those months went by and I heard nothing. As the concert approached, I started to get nervous about whether or not I could pull this proposal off. I had invited my best friends (Chad and Craig were the cameramen of the videos), Heather’s best friend, and my sisters to witness it all go down. It was somewhat obvious that I was planning something. Not all of that crowd is the rock-show crowd.

The day of the show, I had not heard from the manager. It was game time and I did not have a game plan.

As soon as we got to the club, I made an excuse about going to the bathroom. I shot back to Rumba Revolution (the bar/restaurant behind the club) to look for the band. I had been to enough Lucero shows to know they hung out back there and were willing to chat with fans. I saw their table on the way to the restroom and made a plan to hit it up when I was done with that other business. As it would turn out, Ben Nichols was in the bathroom at that time. I caught him by the sink (because anywhere else would have been awkward) and asked him if his manager had talked to him. Ben affirmed that it had been mentioned, but they never made a decision about whether or not they would allow me to make the proposal. I proposed the proposal again, and Ben told me we could do it.

Excitedly, I thanked him and rushed off to my friends. After finding Heather and the rest of the crowd down in the pit area, I realized I had no idea when in the concert this would be happening. A few minutes later, I saw Ben walking back to the back again and rushed after him. We discussed the plan. He told me to come up during his solo set, when he sent the other members of the band off. I asked him which side of the stage I should be at and he told me to go to the one closest to the door.

I finally had a plan. I knew that it would be happening. I could stop actually worrying about everything and just let it happen.

The engagement almost did not happen. It was a moment that rested completely on a hope. A hope that I could pull off the the next-to-impossible. I went into that concert not knowing what, if anything was going to happen. Thankfully, Ben was flexible and totally cool with the whole idea. If it were not for the chance encounter in Rumba restroom, Heather and my engagement might have looked very differently.

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