The week of December 19th 2011 it was rumored that Jon Bon Jovi was dead.
To this he said “Heaven looks a lot like Jersey”. I never really got into Bon Jovi but his resurgence in the 2000’s added a lot of followers to the cult of Jon.
During the summer of 2010, Max came to me and said he was making a video for a contest to win tickets to see Bon Jovi on his Circle Tour. Contestants were to make a video to go with a Bon Jovi song and the winners from each area would win tickets. I probably chuckled and said, “ah… good luck.”
He and a group of friends made a video to go with “Living On A Prayer” and it featured his friends, lip synching and dancing and sitting behind his drum kit out in the rain. Just shots of them having fun on a rainy day in Wisconsin and rocking out. He took all the footage, edited it and sent it in to the contest. He watched the web site that played the winners and sure enough, he won for our area. It was so cool. He was as you might expect, stoked to see his video on the wall of screens behind the stage that played all the fan videos during the show. He got VIP tickets (which he traded for more regular tickets so all his friends from the video could go too) and drove to Chicago to see the show at Soldier Field. He saw his video (at least part of it) on the gigantic middle screen during “Living On A Prayer”. He also got some cool shwag. Though he didn’t get to meet Jon, it was an awesome experience.
I was glad that his good Jon Bon Jovi experience helped dilute my bad one.
When “Living On A Prayer” came out in late 1986 I was driving from town to town looking for work having been laid off from The Wisconsin Cheeseman in Sun Prairie between Thanksgiving and Christmas. It was hell. We were soon to be broke and I had driven from Sun Prairie towards the Trek factory in Waterloo when I first heard it. It was like he wrote it for me. It was poignant and it rang in my head as I drove… praying that they would have openings. They didn’t. That song always reminds me of the hard times and defeat and despair. When you are down it will make you pull over on a snowy road and cry for a minute. However, it’s one you can sing and sing hard when you are back on top with such things behind you.
Trek wasn’t hiring, but I did finally get a job.