If you’d been raised where I was, when I was, you’d understand. It’s not personal. It’s Springsteen.
I have no doubt that your classroom will look wonderful for Back-to-School Night, adorned with the kids’ work and your vision of the year ahead in your fifth grade class. But I won’t be there.
Instead, I’ll be at Giants Stadium, singing the words to “Thunder Road” with 60,000 other middle-aged New Jerseyans , many of whom no doubt were there with me doing the very same thing back in 1984, only with less fat, fewer wrinkles and more energy.
That’s right: I’ve opted to be a New Jersey cliche instead of a conscientious mother. And I know I’m not the only one, as I’ve been a bad influence on other parents who should be at Back-to-School Night as well. I apologize to their kids’ teachers.
But take heart: We’re going to the concert in my mini-van. Plus, we’re going to scream and high-five each other when Bruce plays “Jungleland,” and we’re going to sway side-to-side, holding hands, while we sing along to “Workin’ on a Dream.” We going act like we’re 17 again, and it won’t be pretty. I’ll try to get a photo for you.
So, please send home whatever cute letter my son is writing to me in class today, and I will write back to him in the morning. I might feel a little pang that he won’t find it on his desk when he gets to school, it’s true. But perhaps that will be better payback than the vision of me hanging out my mini-van window shouting, “Bruuuuuuuce!” in the parking lot at the Meadowlands.
Or maybe you fully understand where I’m coming from. In that case, I’ll never speak of this again…unless, of course, you have tickets for Saturday night’s concert. Call me for the set list tomorrow.