current state of mind: confused
She's an extraordinary girl in an ordinary world
And she can't seem to get away
He lacks the courage in his mind
Like a child left behind, like a pet left in the rain
~ “Extraordinary Girl” by Green Day
. . . Just as I handed my phone to the kid so he could take my picture with Billie Joe Armstrong, I woke up. Bloody Hell! -- another fricking dream cut short by the blasted alarm clock.
Here is what I remember:
Green Day created a follow-up musical to “American Idiot”. Somehow, I found myself in it. There I was, running around on-stage and in the theatre, singing with Billie Joe Armstrong. The issue was I didn’t know the words and I cannot sing. And it was clearly apparent. Some other female singer was helping me out by singing over my voice and telling me what to do for choreography. Still, there was huge disparity between the rest of the talent on stage and me.
After the show, Green Day, select members of the cast (including me), and Green Day’s manager went out to dinner. We stopped at the zoo on the way so I could tell my family and god children where I would be (makes total sense).
At the restaurant, Tre Cool kept offering me gator jerky, which I took, though I didn’t like it. “Too spicy,” I told him. “Well, rather, too gamey.” He nodded in understanding, but I continued eating it while we waited for our server.
Rather overwhelmed by the fact I was hanging out with Green Day, I ran into the restaurant’s very small restroom, splashed my face with cold water, and stared into the mirror. “Don’t freak out. Keep calm. It’s just Green Day.” I repeated that mantra in front of the mirror several times before returning to our table. Of course, everyone, including Billie Joe Armstrong, had heard the entire thing – but only their manager approached me. “So, tell me,” he said, “how are you in this musical? You don’t know the lyrics and clearly have no professional stage experience.” My face fell and I looked over at Billie Joe who was watching me with kind eyes.
“Well,” I began. “I know I don’t know the words yet. But, I was never given the script. I just watched it on YouTube, but the sound quality was bad, so I had to wing it.”
The manager shook his head. “Not possible. We recorded it for YouTube with professional equipment. The quality is first class.”
“Then it was likely my laptop. The internal speakers suck.”
Billie Joe, Tre, and Mike relaxed at my response and laughed as if that cleared everything up. Then the girl who had helped me during the show put her arm around me and said she’d help me learn it and not to worry. The manager dropped the subject and we all began placing our orders with the wait-staff. I was sitting next to some 19 or 20 year old kid who I think was Billie Joe’s younger brother or cousin or something (in the dream). He was really nice and chatty – but I kept looking away from him to stare at Billie Joe Armstrong, completely in awe. The kid didn’t notice and continued talking about the show and the new music, etc.
After he finished eating, Billie Joe walked over and sat down next to me on the ottoman. (Yes, I was sitting on an ottoman. I don’t know why; apparently so there was room to sit with me.) He asked how I was doing and I couldn’t suppress my excitement any longer. “How am I? Seriously, how am I? I am sitting here, having dinner with Green fecking Day. I am in your musical and I can’t even sing on key. Tre Cool shared gator jerky with me. Mike Dirnt said I did well for my first show. And you, Billie Joe Armstrong, are sitting here chilling with me and your kid brother.” I took a breath and continued, “So, I’d say I am having a damn fine day. How are you?” Billie Joe laughed at my enthusiasm and assured me he was having a “damn fine day” as well.
“Picture Time!” someone shouted and everyone stood up to pose for the photographers. I grabbed my Fuji Instant film camera (the one that ‘dadofthree’ gave me for Christmas) and asked kid brother to take my picture with the cast, etc. He took several pics, but when I posed with Billie Joe, the camera slipped from his hand and all the film was exposed. “No worries!” I said and handed him my cell phone. “Use this.” . . .
PERSONAL NOTE: I know you said that perhaps we have remained friends for the purpose to discover what you discovered today. I believe that your purpose is far more important than even that. You have served as my muse when I couldn’t write, my champion when I wanted to give up, and my friend when all I wanted to do was push everyone away. I am looking forward to the day we can sit at Fat Freddy's, drink a couple pints, and share a conversation.
CONFIDENTIAL NOTE: I wonder if you will ever see this.