Like the time I pawned my wife’s engagement ring so that I could buy tickets for Fleetwood Mac. After all, I thought, we’re already married. What does she need an engagement ring for? Ha! Tell that to my wife. She was so angry that she threatened to leave me. Then she made me sleep on the couch for a week. She never understood me. No, she never understood concerts.

Then there was that time I spent our summer vacation money on season tickets for the local amphitheatre. “Who needs the Grand Canyon when you have Jimmy Buffett?” I asked. “Why would anyone want to go to Hawaii or Jamaica when ZZ Top and Ted Nugent are coming to town?” I exclaimed. That was the second time my wife threatened to leave me. Instead, she made me sleep in the garage for the rest of the summer. All because of concerts.

Did I stop? Heck, no. I wanted more. More April Wine, more Violent Femmes and plenty more Yanni. I burned through our savings account for Cher, spent the retirement funds on Eagles and Springsteen and sold the car for a week’s worth of Phish shows. That was when my wife made me sleep in the backyard and refused to let me back in the house, not even for dinner. But who needs food when you have tickets for Kottonmouth Kings and Stereo Fuse? Hmmm… Concerts.

You may say I’m weak, that I can’t resist temptation, and that I’d spend my last dollar on Ringo Starr & His All Starr Band. Go ahead, I’ve heard it all. In fact, that’s what my wife said before she finally moved out, divorced me and married a Seven Eleven clerk from Bakersfield. She said she needed security. But what did she know? For if security had a name, it would be concerts.

Now I live in a cardboard box in an alley behind the Ticketmaster. I go from Dumpster to Dumpster scavenging bottles and cans to recycle into ticket money for Steve Forbert and Evanescence. And when I think back upon the “old days,” the days when I had a job, a home and a wife that constantly threatened to leave me because I spent all our money on Blue Oyster Cult, Chicago and Herman’s Hermits Starring Peter Noone, one word comes to mind. One word that perfectly describes my spending every last dime on Ozzfest and Lollapalooza until my wife finally got tired of threatening me and moved in with the Slurpee King of the southern San Joaquin. And no, my friend, that word would not be “concerts.”

That word would be “persistence.”