NOTE FROM MIKEWHY: Since Molly and Alie had to leave the net for a while, they asked me to mirror their page with their concert story on it. I was more than happy to do so. These sisters made history during the Dew Drop Inn tour, and I want to make sure their page is preserved. ENJOY!
A Day in the Life with Tori...
This is a review of our concert experience at EJ Thomas Hall in Akron.
O.K. - let's go way back to the beginning when my dad and I ("I" being Molly) had gone to the Cleveland Tori concert in june. We had won tickets on 107.9 - "The End" - (The BEST radio station in Northeast Ohio). Along with the tickets we got a pass to the pre-concert sound check with Tori. It was an amazing concert. We met Tori before the sound check, got her autograph (met our good "Friend in Tori" - Maery Lynn Dickerson ... she was crying her eyes out after meeting Tori... she is soooo sweet), went to the concert (first show) and went home walking on air. Everything went well except that I tried to get Tori a gift but was unable to due to circumstances. (That's another story). Well, needless to say, my little sister Alie who is also a HUGE Tori fan was very upset that she couldn't go (she knows all of Tori's songs and has just about wore out all the tapes including the "Little Earthquakes" video. She always walks around the house doing singing impersonations of Tori. She is very good till she starts singing [in a whisper sort of voice like Tori's] "...you think I'm a queer, I think your a queer, I think your a queer, I think your a queer ..." - My mom sorta freaks out on her at that point...anyways... ). Later we found out from Maery through E-Mail (God love her) that Tori was coming to EJ Thomas Hall in Akron on Sept.16th. Being the great man he is, my dad surprised Alie on her birthday with tickets to the Tori concert.
You will soon find out this was the BEST birthday present Alie ever got.
After a really lousy, rainy weekend we were pumped to get to the concert. Alie had the day off from school due to a school function that weekend. I had to have my dad call in for me for the day off from school - :) . We went to Westgate Mall and picked up a couple things for Tori ( I got her a great picture of Judy Garland from the "Wizard of Oz" and Alie got her a "97" Faerie calendar). Then it was off for the long trip from Cleveland to Akron. Actually it wasn't that long but it sure seemed like it. We left the house at 1:00 PM and got there about 2:00 PM. We listened to Tori tapes all the way there. I'm glad my dad loves Tori as much as we do. Alie kept wondering if she would get to meet Tori.
As soon as we got to the campus at Akron U we spotted two of the three buses. All of us immediately got very excited and the adventure started.
We found a place to park very close to the buses. We were lucky because we got there early. Alie my dad and I headed to the buses. Alie immediately started waving at them. Then she started moving closer to them. The next thing we knew she was knocking on the windows trying to get the bus drivers attention. She kept asking if Tori was there. The driver said "no" a couple times. (Finally he started ignoring her). Now there is one thing you have to know about my sister... she is the MOST persistent person that you have EVER met. The next thing we knew Alie was jumping off this park bench that was strategically located near the front window of the bus. As she was jumping off she was waving in the windows yelling "HI Tori"... it was quite funny actually. My dad and I (along with anyone who saw this going on) were laughing to tears.
Alie driving the bus driver nuts looking for Tori.
You can see the park bench she was jumping off at the front of the red bus.
My dad was keeping an eye on the stage entrance and Alie and I were staying close to the buses. Other Tori fans were across the street waiting for the arrival of our goddess. Even the waiting was exciting. After about an hour the security people and stage hands were setting up the barriers.
Tori was on her way !!
We all got in line. The Monitor was there giving everyone a hard time and said "... now I really want to be nice to you all and have you meet her but if anyone gets out of line and starts bunching up or breathes or swallows... I'm going to have to get Tori inside..." - you know the drill...
I remember waiting there anxiously. My heart pounding 1,000 times per minute. Alie was jumping around. My dad was smiling away. Finally... her bus had arrived (guess the guy was right when he said Tori wasn't in either of the other two buses... though you can never be to sure). After the bus almost hit a fire hydrant as it was backing up a couple people got off. What seemed like forever finally came to an end when we saw this little person with a lime green hooded sweat shirt, a pair of jeans, red hair, those trademark earrings and an Evian water bottle come off the bus. It was Tori ! I remember thinking as I watched her walk toward us how cute, little and absolutely perfect she was. In a way I felt an overwhelming sense to cry. Now I felt a closer bond and understanding to Maery Lynn... Behind her was the Merimack. Boy is he huge. My dad told me later that it was at this time he felt like he was "going to see the wizard".
We were about six back in line. Tori started talking to those at the head of the line. Alie moved a little to the left out of line to get a better glimpse of her idol. Tori spotted Alie and this big smile came across Tori's face. Tori then dropped her head slightly and gave Alie one of the famous "over the brow" looks and waved saying " Hi".
Finally, it was our turn. Alie gave Tori her Faerie calendar and said "this is for you". At this point it dawned on me Tori probably has about three thousand 97 calendars... Oh well.
Alie and Tori talked awhile. The Monitor and the Merimack were sorta rushing things along. You could tell Tori took a shine to Alie. You can see this in their picture. Alie got her "Little Earthquakes" video autographed. As they were standing there together my dad told Tori that Alie wanted in the worst way to play a game of monopoly with her. (honest... Alie kept saying this even weeks before the concert... go figure). Tori laughed and said she would love to some time though Alie would probably "kick her butt". We got a picture of Tori and Alie, they said their goodbyes :( . Alie stood off to the side. I was next.
I walked toward Tori. I was so nervous. I asked Tori if she got the gifts I left with the Monitor at the last concert in Cleveland. I remember talking about as fast as my heart was beating. She was sorta standing there with her head cocked to the side with this look on her face as though she was really trying to remember (and keep up with what I was saying). When I mentioned the faerie T-shirt I saw her face light up and she said "... yes I did get them..." and pointed to the bus saying "...it's on the bus...". God was I relieved. That had bothered me for months wondering if she got it or not. My mind was at ease. She asked if I wanted to hear anything special. I asked Cornflake Girl. She said O.K.. I got my picture taken with her and we hugged. At that point I realized that I absolutely loved this person not just for her music but for "herself" as well.
Next... it was my dad's turn to meet Tori.
Actually when I asked my dad how it went he just mumbled something about the wizard, the lion and jumping through a window...
Kidding Dad... :)
Actually I was there when he met her. He told her he was a big fan too. I think she was happy to hear that since he was "our dad". She turned to us and said "... you guys have a pretty cool dad, hugh? ...". We agreed. He gave her our web page address and told her how we had dedicated it to her. She seemed very happy and looked back at the Merimack. They both looked at each other as if they knew of all these web pages dedicated to her but didn't meet a lot of the people that put them together. They seemed impressed by it all. At that point my dad gave Tori his Spin mag for her to sign. As she was signing it my dad pulled out a recorder he brought with him. As he was pulling it out the Merimack gave him a look like "don't" and started shaking his head. My dad asked Tori anyways if she would mind giving us a message to everyone on the web. He said he would embed it in our web page. This is what we got...
My dad, Alie and I could not believe the clip. It was so sad. My dad said he didn't know for sure how to react when she started crying. He felt that he caused her to cry and wanted to apologize. In hind sight he now wishes he would have put his arm around her and tried to comfort her. We wonder though how that would have gone over with the Merimack. Probably not so good. Anyways, my dad got his picture with her and we were on our way. You can see in the picture how Tori's eyes were red from crying.
We walked across the street and met the other "Ears with Feet" and listened to the tape. We couldn't believe what we had. We sat and viewed some of the other peoples pictures they had from previous concerts and all. We talked awhile and decided to go to dinner since it was only 4:30 and the concert didn't start till 7:30.
Enter - Dave, Craig, Denise and Menley.
As trivial as it may seem dinner ended up being one of my favorite memories.
We were driving around trying to agree on a place to dine as well as get Menley's pictures she took of Tori and herself developed in an hour. She wanted to get one of them to Tori after the concert. This is all while we really didn't know for sure where we were going. Dave was doing his best to get us to our destinations safely (AAAAGGGGHHHHHHHHHHH - kidding Dave :)
We finally settled on Daves suggestion of Thai Food. We all sat down and started looking at the menu. Dave knew what he was looking at though the rest of us... well... let's put it this way - one of the dishes were called "Running Horse". Craig, Menley, Alie and I had a field day with this (It was kinda like when your in church and your not supposed to laugh and it is for that reason you almost have to leave so nobody thinks your a spaz for laughing so hard).
When dinner arrived Alie complained the whole time and wanted to go to Burger King. She did want to try out chopsticks though and decided to give the food a try for that reason. She didn't know how to use them so Dave gave her some assistance. After a few minutes of trying she gave up. She asked Menley who was sitting next to her to help on how to pick up this piece of chicken. Menley said "you wanna know how to pick up that chicken?" With that Menley took Alie's fork that was sitting on the table and with a bite of her upper lip and a swift stab (much like the way you would swat a mosquito) she skewed the bird. She looked up at me with a whisp of hair that had found it's way over her right eye and a slight grin of victory on her face while still holding the fork against the plate. With that Alie and I busted out laughing. I wish I could have got it on film.
Later Alie and I were looking at these orange things on our plates shaped like roses. As Alie, Menley and I tried to figure what they were the oriental kids behind us started laughing at the fact that they were carrots...
What I loved about dinner the most is that there was such a warmth between all of us. We all just sat around and talked about Tori and life in general. We laughed the whole time. It amazes me how Tori and her music can create such a great sense of peace between perfect strangers.
Well by the time we finally got to the concert it was pouring and we were LATE ! Thank God all we missed was the first couple songs of Josh Clayton. We all decided to meet out by the bus after the concert to see Tori off. All of us split up and went to our seats.
At the break between Josh and Tori my dad and I went looking for Maery Lynn. We finally found her talking to none other than our own Craig who we had hung out with all afternoon. I guess he knew her from previous concerts or something (It's truly a small world). The reason we went looking for Maery was to say hi and get her some pictures of herself with Tori from the June concert.Unfortunately my dad forgot the pictures in the mini-van. So Maery decided to meet us after the concert briefly to get the pictures though she had to run right after to meet her ride.
This is a key incident in the events to follow so make a mental.
We all went back to our seats. IT WAS TORI TIME !!!
The concert was absolutely perfect. We had the best time. What was great is that Alie, my dad and I all knew the songs.
I was trying to think of how to put this part in words. It was a bit complicated. Then my dad and I saw Maery's Concert Review on RDT. Our concert review problem was solved. My dad and I have never seen one put together better. What is so good about it is that her approach was not so much opinionated as it was thorough and detailed even down to the conversations between Tori and the audience. Wait till you read it. My dad asked Maery and she had no problem with us placing it on our web page. Thanks Maery !!! :)
Date: Wed, 18 Sep 1996 19:21:01 -0400
From: ij587@cleveland.Freenet.Edu (Mary Lynn Dickerson)
Subject: Tori in Akron
Hey everyone :) Just went and saw my fifth and final Tori show (this year at least *sniff sniff*). It was amazing. So amazing that i think i can honestly say that it was even better than the second show in Cleveland back in June. I had pretty decent seats, right next to the sound men. I recognized on one of them from the picture in _all these years_ with Tori and the crew out to eat. I talked to him and he had a strong British accent ;) What I thought was hilarious though, was that his styrofoam cup of whatever had this name on it: Deaf Twat!!! I thought that Tori and the crew were close, but i never thought...Well, anyway, on to the show.
Josh Clayton-Felt was better than I had thought he would be. A lot of people haven't liked but I think that he was Ok.
Tori comes out in a tight short sleeve blue top with blue Levi's. And get this...NO SHOES!!! Maybe she needs to go shopping or something. (Yeah, right. With all those millions of pairs she already has.)
T: stands for Tori talking --- A: stands for audience or audience member
T: Hello! How's it going you guys?
A: *applause* I Love You!
T: Anyway, I love you too. I hadn't played that one in a long time and I thought that you would understand.
T: Some of you know who this wonderful being is, this wonderful person,
Caton. While the tour is ending, I'm trying to figure out what I am
going to do when it's over.
A: Can you come visit me?
T: Can you cook?
T: Spaghettios?!?! You'll have to do better than that, babe. Right now I'm into spicy, spicy, spicy. Girls you understand. Spicy beans, and I don't care what my boyfriend says.
Then Tori plays a li'l ditty and does an (in)famous dog bark which goes
A: Lucky Ducky!!
(Bunch of requests).
T: Hold your horses, I wanna to hear about Lucky Ducky. Then breaks into this song....
Lucky Ducky was his name
Every girl knows Lucky Ducky's game
All the girls come from ear to ear, ear to ear
To see what Lucky Dicky's got up his ---- (omits the word rear - filled in by several audience members)
I'm not to sure what it is about Northeast Ohio that brings out this weird
impromptu songs from Tori (remember Pain in His Hole? That started in
Cleveland and seems to be getting playing time in other select cities.)
T: I hardly ever play this one, so...
T: Some of you may have heard this before, some of you haven't.
Hugs to Scott and Molly and Alie too (who i heard had a wonderful Tori
encounter after the show? You'll have to tell me about it.)
I'm sad thinking about what I'm gonna do with myself for the next few
years. It was a great feeling when you're having just a really bad day and
you can say to yourself, i'm gonna see Tori soon and it is just all better.
It'll be hard to convince myself, you're gonna see Tori in about 3 years.
Oh well, she deserves a very nice big huge gigundo long rest after the
incredible amount of touring she has done. And the best of luck on the
Well the concert was over and all seemed to be winding down. Alie, my dad and I ran to the mini-van to get the pictures for Maery. On the way back we found Menley going the wrong way to the bus. (I must point out we fell in love with this girl. She was so funny). So we got her turned around and met Dave, Craig and Denise by the bus. After a few minutes of searching we found Maery. We gave her the pictures and said our goodbyes and hugged. We wanted her to stay and see Tori again but she had to get going. My dad, Alie and I got to the barriers and met back with Dave, Craig, Denise and Menley. We were waiting and the next thing I knew my dad was missing. I wasn't sure where he went but I felt comfortable that Craig was looking out for us (once again, this is a very good person. My dad gave Craig his highest regards in that he seemed to lookout for Alie and I when he couldn't).
At this point I would like to turn to the E-mail my dad wrote Maery the day after the concert due to my loss for better words.
"... It was after the concert... Oh my God Maery! Alie & Molly got to meet Tori again which they talked quite a bit. This is while Alie was behind the barriers. Then Tori went on to talk to more people and heard Alie say she was getting "Squished". So Tori asked that security put her on the opposite side of the barriers until the place cleared a little after she left. So Tori then headed to the bus and was going to get on when Alie yelled "Tori" and waved goodbye. At that point Tori set down her bag and gestured with her finger for Alie to come to her. So Alie went running up to Tori and Tori gave her the biggest hug and a kiss on the cheek. Alie asked Tori to stay and play a game of monopoly with her. Tori said she had to go to Indiana and said she was going to miss Alie a great deal. They talked about some other stuff too. Then Tori gave Alie one of those famous Tori looks (you know the one with her head tilted down with a slight smile on her face as she looks up over her brow). By this time Alie was getting some heavy tears in her eyes. Once Tori saw that her eyes started welling up too. Then the guy behind Tori said "we have to go" and Tori said just a sec and gave Alie another good hug and kiss. When she got on the bus Alie was still standing there looking up at her and Tori looked back and Alie said Tori got this look on her face like she was going to start crying and looked down real quick while disappearing out of sight.
A few moments later after the crowd had disbursed the one dark haird body guard came up to Alie and gave her a piece of paper and said "whatever you do never lose this". It was Tori's schedule of songs she used on stage.
I know... it sounds like out of a movie. If we could have planned it we couldn't have done better. Since then Alie has been happy and sad at the same time. She knows only she and Tori fully knows what they experienced together. I can only imagine.
To tell you the truth I have to thank you largely for Alie's encounter. I wasn't there in the front when it happened because I was looking for you to get a picture for our web page (I'm doing a full concert review including pics of those who are a part of our lives in regards to Tori). By the time I got to the line it was 20 people deep. If I would have been there I would have held Alie and she would have never got to the other side of the barrier.
The most interesting part of the whole ordeal is that when I was at the back of the crowd I kept thinking and hoping that Craig or anybody was keeping an eye on Alie and Molly because I was worried they'd get "squished" (as Alie would say)... little did I know it would be Tori that would answer my prayers..."
What a day. Met Tori twice. Saw her concert. She played my song. Met some beautiful friends. I can't think of a better day. I was sad though because it was over.
Craig and Denise left with friends. Dave had to go back to the hospital (he's going to be a doctor... by the way, this is another great person). That left Alie, my dad, Menley and I. We were walking back to the car and Menley mentioned that she parked her car down on another lot down a hill and across some RR tracks. So my dad offered that we escort her back to the car. Then we saw the hill. OH MY GOD !! My dad and Alie made it down fine. But Menley took another route and I decided to follow her (Houston we have a problem). Between the mud from the rain that day and the killer tree on the way down even this little venture was something to remember. And it gave us one more reason to love Menley even more.
We promised to send her a copy of the tape of Tori since she didn't have web access. We said our goodbye's and watched her get into her white Ford Escort and drive off into the blackness of the night.
On our way home we talked of the events of the day. Alie was still in heaven after her encounter with Tori. My dad was soooo happy that Alie had an unbelievable "Tori Encounter" for her birthday. And I just sat there feeling I left one of my best friends on a long cruise since Tori won't be back for two and a half years.
About ten miles away from Cleveland my dad stopped off at a rest stop to call my mom and tell her we were on our way home. We were leaving the rest stop and saw a familiar white Escort. We strained in the dark to see who it was. It was Menley. The irony of seeing her gave us our last magical glimpse of the night that would be forever burned in our memory.
The paper on the left is the "Song List" that we believe Tori gave the Monitor to give to Alie.
You can see the day and date - Mon, Sep 16, 1996 - in the lower left corner and the city - Akron- in the lower right corner.
The three of us walked around the house the next few days half happy at the concert experience we had and half sad at the thought of not seeing Tori for over two years. Again I can totally relate to Maery Lynn when she said "... it will be hard to convince my self that things will be better on a bad day when the next time we see Tori will be in three years..."
It seems as though the concert day was a wonderful dream that I was in that I will never see again. If Tori only knew how happy she made Alie, my dad and I over the past year. All the excitement of a new album, new concerts and dinners by candlelight with Tori as the dinner music. Alie walking around singing "...I think your a queer..." and showers with Tori music blasting in the background. Meeting new friends. She brought the three of us so close together in ways she will probably never know and possibly not fully understand.
All we have left to say is that until we meet again...