I hope my husband is happy.
He thinks that I’d dump him for Jack White, that I’d run away to live in the hills of Tennessee with the former furniture upholsterer turned guitar god with the penchant for dressing like a dandy, channeling Delta Blues musicians and crafting guitars out of wood, a nail, a glass bottle and wire.*
Good thing Jack White only has eyes for tall, leggy, doe-eyed redheads or maybe I’d have a chance. *ahem*
Seriously. Several times, by happy accident, I’ve stood elbow-to-shoulder with the man and trust me, his attention was elsewhere. My husband has never let me forget those evenings. Not that I could. It was thrilling to be able to just share the same floor space with someone of such talent. Back then he was just a local guy drinking a beer and sucking on a cigarette at a popular dive bar. Honestly, my favorite memory is second-row seats at a Raconteurs concert positioned directly in line with Jack White as he did that thing that he does. I don’t know Jack White, the person. He is a stranger to me. I do know Jack White, the musician and performer. I don’t want a date; I want concert tickets.
I don’t know what to do around “celebrities” of any sort. Even when I was a reporter, I’d skip those assignments in favor of interviewing an everyday Joe or Jane. Years ago at a David Bowie concert, I stood in a concert T-shirt line next to familiar young man who turned out to be Steve Yzerman of the Detroit Red Wings. I didn’t realize it until I’d left the concert venue. My friends were jealous, pumping me for details. I didn’t have any to share since I just assumed it was a guy from high school.
Before the White Stripes went on hiatus, it was kind of an inside joke that I was president of the local chapter of their fan club.
So it was with deep embarrassment that I learned last weekend, at a children’s birthday party for god’s sake, that he was named musician of the millennium or something like that. I went home and looked it up. Here’s what I found:
I know. Lists, schmists. Everyone and their brother is going to compile these lists as we slip from the aughts to the teens. And what do I know of the caliber of the Guardian U.K.? Even the White Stripes’ and affiliated Web sites have failed to make note of these honors, so I’m not sure what to make of them myself.
While I’m thrilled that Jack is getting the attention, acclaim and respect I’ve felt he’s deserved all along, I’m rather embarrassed that I had to hear about this from a fair-weather fan over cake and ice cream. I hope my husband is happy; it’s obvious I have more pressing matters on my mind than the latest Jack White news.
Perhaps, if my spouse would stop this foolishness for a moment, he’d realize I’m thinking about him.
(Little does he know he’s getting a guitar for Christmas. That, and a pair of red and white pants.)
*I dated my share of out-there artsy types who did things like drive Hearses, dress like people from different eras, wear make-up, and get in character for their art. They always ended up embarrassing and frustrating me.