On February 22, 2005, I remember coming home from school and doing my normal after school activities which mostly included coming home and heading to blink182.com to see if there was any updates on my favorite band.
When I arrived at their site, there was a new post which announced an “indefinite hiatus.” As a young punk rocker, I didn’t exactly know what that meant. After some Googling, I didn’t know what to expect. It wasn’t a break up, but it wasn’t a confirmation that they were going to tour or write new music.
My dad was on a business trip at the time and he heard about the news on CNN. He knew my love for the band so he called and asked if I was okay with this news. I said, “Yeah, I’m fine. It’s not a breakup or anything. It’s an indefinite hiatus.” I could tell that he wanted to let me know that there was a very slim chance of them getting back together from the pause in his reply, but he didn’t have enough heart to do so. He could tell I was in denial and was fully confident that blink-182 would come back soon enough. Looking back on it, the fact that blink-182 made a news story on CNN in 2005 is pretty awesome.
Before I continue, I feel that I should give some background information on myself. blink-182 has always been my favorite band. I feel that up until I heard blink-182, I was searching for them for my entire life. Once I found them, I knew exactly where I belonged. I was passionate about blink-182 and everyone that knew me, knew that. The first song I heard from them was What’s My Age Again in 5th grade and I couldn’t remember the name of them until my cousin showed me “Family Reunion” from my favorite album, “The Mark, Tom, and Travis Show” at a family reunion. That CD has been on repeat since then. Travis was a huge influence on me growing up because I played percussion in the school band. When I got to high school, a friend of mine taught me how to play guitar and I quickly learned a lot of blink-182 songs. To this day, Tom DeLonge is my biggest influence on guitar. blink-182 was also the first concert I had ever been to.
So, to continue my story, everyone I knew would always say that blink-182 wasn’t getting back together because they broke up, but I would get really defensive and say that it was an indefinite hiatus and that they’d be back. There were times that I lost hope, but I tried to not let that get the best of me. I would watch both Urethra Chronicles and when I saw how they interacted with each other, I knew that they’d be back.
I went to a lot of concerts throughout high school and college, but there were only a few that compared to the joy that the first blink-182 show brought me. A few shows that exceeded all expectations were The Aquabats, Tenacious D, and Four Year Strong. All of them have amazing stage presence. I was always left wanting more blink-182.
On February 8, 2008, blink-182 came on the the Grammy’s to announce that they were back. As soon as Mark yelled that, I jumped out of my seat and yelled, “YES! I CAN’T BELIEVE IT” and immediately started running around my college apartment. I’m sure my entire apartment building knew that blink-182 was back that night from the loudness of my excitement. Many people texted me saying that they were wrong and I was right about blink-182. It wasn’t a matter of proving I was right, I just wanted my favorite band back together so they could tour and make more of my favorite music.
I couldn’t wait for their reunion tour. Their Milwaukee date was by far one of the greatest experiences of my life. We waited outside by the tour buses all morning and met some hardcore blink fans. I got paranoid about where I parked my car so I left for 10 minutes to move it. In those ten minutes, Mark Hoppus came out and gave an Octopus flash drive to someone waiting (who later became a friend) and she got a picture with him. I was devastated. When we got into the concert, T-Mobile was running a promotion “Enter to win seat upgrades or a chance to meet blink-182.” Since we had seats that were pretty far back, I told everyone I was with to enter to try and get better seats because let’s face it, the odds of winning a private meet-n-greet is pretty rare. So we enter, we take some pictures and we carry on. 10 minutes later, my friend gets a phone call and he has a huge smile on his face and he’s pointing at me. He had won a private meet-n-greet with blink-182 and got to bring one person with. That person was me. I couldn’t believe it. I was jumping, hyperventilating, 130% fangirling at this moment. When we were waiting, the Macbeth crew came and took a video of me. I didn’t know what to say because I was in pure ecstasy, but you can watch it here (I’m 20 seconds in with the blue Macbeths).When they brought us in, they said my friend and I could stand next to Mark and I immediately called, “DIBS!” My friend allowed it even though he won. So, when they came out, I was all shy and nervous. Mark stood next to me and I looked up to him because he’s 6’2” and I’m 5’10”. In order to try and make myself believe that this was reality, I took my hand and gently stroked his shoulder. He didn’t reply at first and I thought it was fake. After a few seconds, Mark replied, “Weird.” I freaked out. It happened. Mark acknowledged my existence. I explained how it was my life goal to meet them and he shook my hand and confirmed again that it was weird. I loved it. Afterwards, I shook Mark and Travis’ hand and gave Tom a hug while he said, “No homo.” I was glad to see the blink-182 Tom humor as opposed to the Angels and Airwaves lovey-dovey Tom. Also, three people from my high school attended that private meet-n-greet. My high school had less than 800 students and this amphitheater held around 20,000 and we were in a different state. How about those odds? I like to think that good things happen to those who have hope.
Anyway, since then, I’ve taken every advantage of seeing blink-182. I flew to Vegas to see them play a few times and I travel across the midwest to see them play. You never know when another indefinite hiatus may come along. It sucks about Travis’ plane crash, but if that didn’t happen, who knows where blink-182 would be today. I have another story on that, but I’ll save that for a different day. I’m just so glad blink-182 is back.
tl;dr: blink-182 announced an indefinite hiatus on today (February 22) in 2005 and it broke my heart. I had faith that they’d come back and when they did I won a private meet-n-greet with them and was even included in a Macbeth video with them. I can’t express how excited I am that they are back and writing music. They are my biggest influence, not only in music, but how their humor has shaped my life.