“Almost Home” Hits Wittenberg U.

December 5th, 2003

I am watching CNN with the ladies of 470 Woodlawn. I’m on the campus of Wittenberg University. It’s drizzling outside. We’re all in sweats. We’re all hung over from last night’s livingroom show.

I got in around 4 yesterday, really thrashed from the 500 mile commute (through sniper alley). Heather and I immediately headed over to WUSO-FM, where her friend Mike was DJing. He spun a few songs from Almost Home, and I talked his ear off, plugging benjaminwagner.com and inviting people to call in for directions to the living room party. It was a lot of fun, actually. Once again, this Livingroom Tour has introduced me to so many people who absolutely love music, and for the right reasons.

Heather showed me around campus (beautiful), then we rounded up some beers and pizza, settled into a little TLC, and people started showing up. And showing up. And showing up. Heather, Jen and Laura’s apartment was packed, everyone was laughing and having a great time. So I got started. And once again, it was a real dialogue between myself and the group. And I real good time.

I basically played the record in order, then started peppering the set with Crash Site songs and a few covers (“Here Comes Your Man,” “Where Is My Mind”). The show kept going and going as Heather and Justin had specific requests (“Shiver,” “Crash Site”). Then I sold more records and t-shirts than any tour stop yet. And then the trouble really began…

I mean, maybe it’s a little weird for a 32-year-old to be hanging out with college students. I dunno’. But it’s been a lot of fun trying to keep up. The roommates (Heather, Jen and Laura), Mike and I went to Station One, one of the campus dives, and I immediately regressed: Mike ordered up shots of Jim Bean. Now, when I was a teenager, we used to sneak scotch out of the liquor cabinet and mix it with whatever we could find. So it brings back some rough memories. But luckily, I kept it down. Then I kinda’ did some audience research, watching college students in their natural habitat through bleary eyes. Then we stumbled home where, from what I recall, I wolfed down a slice of cold pizza, and promptly fell asleep (the roommates refer to it as “passing out”) on the floor.

So as you can imagine, it was a painful morning. But I managed a run through campus. And Heather and I went to Bob Evans’ for breakfast (delicious), and Target for a little cultural studies (I got a Peter Gabriel CD). Back home, I fell asleep on the couch.

And now I’m headed to Cincinnati. So far, I’ve missed the snow, and hope to continue with that good fortune. And hopefully, tomorrow morning will be a little less painful than today.

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