Wednesday, September 19, 2018

The time I met Bono


In September of 1992, my college roomate Karen and I drove almost six hours from Richmond, Virginia to Columbia, South Carolina to see my favorite band. To say I loved U2 is an understatement. I had been listening to them for years, even the B-sides. 

I had just finished reading a book about them, "Unforgettable Fire," a biography by Eamon Dunphy. It was a pretty deep tale, maybe a little too personal in parts, I thought. He talked about how the faith of some of the band members had shaped their lives. It was encouraging to me because I had just become a Christian. As I read the book and listened to their newer songs I wondered if some of that had changed. I don't know how else to say it. I wanted to ask Bono if he still loved Jesus. It might not surprise anyone who reads this blog that I prayed to do exactly that.

We arrived at the stadium in the early afternoon, around 1:30. Karen stayed in the car studying. I wandered, magnetically drawn to a group of superfans nearby. They were huddled in a mass of adoration. It was like we were all on some kind of cool pilgrimage. One of them turned to me and excitedly said, "They're just about to arrive!"

WHAT. Really?

A heartbeat later, a long white limousine pulled up, stopped at our gathering crowd, and out got The Edge!

Everyone screamed, "Bono!" 

The Edge looked a little disappointed and got right back in the limo. Ha ha! I kind of wish I had yelled, "The Edge," but I hadn't even yelled, "Bono!" I was silent as a stone.

I was really young when this happened. I feel a little ridiculous writing it now. 

Bono got out next.

You know when someone says the crowd went wild? This crowd did just that. Stark raving mad wild. There was a wall of them and I looked around for a way in. There, behind Bono, was a little path of no people. I ambled over and simply walked up the path, realizing too late it was Bono's escape path and his security guys were having none of it. One of them was shoving me aside! But Bono turned around, seemed to size me up as non-threatening, and told his guard, "It's all right, Derek." Derek let me past. 

So I got to stand right next to Bono. Someone out there probably has a picture of it and I bet I look terrified. Why? I don't know, but I bet that's how I look. You know what I said? That's right. Nothing. Not a word! Bono signed my tour program. Our hair touched. It was the era of big hair, we weren't that close. 

This is a ridiculous story, isn't it? I am sorry to say that's it. I didn't ask what I came to ask. I honestly felt like that moment miraculously occurred. I could have easily asked my question. It probably would have been a cool thing. Oh, regret!

A few years later I was sitting on my couch with my boys, reading something and remembering that day, and I wondered what he would have said. You know what came to me? Well, not regret, just the thought that I was the only one disappointed there. God didn't need the question asked, He already knew how Bono felt about Him.  

I bet he would have said yes. I mean, come on, right?

I still have a little regret.



48 comments:

  1. Hello Sandi!
    I love Bono!
    He is a great, wonderful man !!!
    Greetings from Poland.
    Lucja

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  2. This story reminds me of the scene in "A Christmas Story" when Ralphie finally has the chance to ask Santa for the BB gun and he freezes. But you know, I'm pretty sure God knows one way or the other and in any event, he seems to live his life in a way Jesus would approve.

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  3. That is a great story!! Your know, I have a former blogging friend/current Facebook friend who lives in Wales. She is related to either Bono or The Edge (I think it's The Edge). She and her family get free tickets to concerts whenever U2 is playing near them and they always go back stage. Next time she posts about it, I'll pay more attention and will give you a link!!

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  4. That is really a great story...and even though you didn't do exactly what you intended to do, you did what you were meant to do. And like you said, God already knew what his answer would be...and maybe at that time he wasn't quite ready to answer that question. Maybe it would be different today...but God knows his heart and that is the most important thing. Somehow I think God may have given him your message just in the fact that he allowed you to get close...there was a transaction taking place that only God knows about...and you may have projected a sense of Christ to him at that moment and that is why he felt safe to let you come close. Who knows? God knows. You did what you were meant to do. God knows. You were pretty brave! Where did that come from? God knows...

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  5. Sandi that was a great read. I was a big U2 fan in the 80's though my love for music has fizzled into new age stuff now!

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    1. What do you mean by new age? Have you ever heard of a harp player named Aryeh Frankfurter? He is fabulous. That's what I think of us new age...or maybe Yanni!

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  6. What a remarkable memory you shared Sandi. I enjoyed reading it, and I understand your wondering what if too. Have a blessed and Happy New Year :)

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  7. How special for you... That is a memory you can cherish forever...

    Hope you had a great holiday season... We certainly did.

    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  8. Oh my gosh Sandi, what a memory! I'm sure you felt so special and wondrous that it was enough for you. I don't know if Bono still believes, but he certainly is a wonderful giver to the world, and that is surely the sign of a loving person.

    One thing I do know, God sure loved you in those moments! He gave you a memory to cherish forever. I wonder what your friend thought when you told her???
    Grace and blessings,
    Ceil

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    1. Haha...she is a person deeply unimpressed by these sorts of things. :)

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  9. Fascinating memory...

    I'd not worry about "what if's." You had a marvelous experience. How many ever get that close, to the subject of fandom? :-)

    Thank you for sharing it with us.

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  10. Hello Sandi, hope you are having a great day!

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  11. I Love This! Wonderful story and I felt like I was there with you. Your writing style is really interesting as well, kept me reading till the end! Wonderful do more!!!

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  12. Wonderful memories of your amazing encounter! My son and his friend took a college break trip to New Zealand about 10 years ago and was walking down a main street in Christchurch and there was Bono walking along with them! All they could say was, 'Hey Man' and Bono nodded and smiled. They were surprised and thrilled, too. Too bad you didn't get to ask your question. xx Karen

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  13. I like your beautiful memory Sandi.

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  14. What a remarkable story, Sandi. Who knew that you would actually stand that close to Bono. I agree with someone's comment above...Bono certainly is a generous giver in this world. Isn't it a wonderful thing that God created our minds in a fashion so that we could store memories? xx

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  15. That's so cool!

    S

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  16. SO awesome! Such a wonderful life experience and so well told! Don't regret. My angel was telling me to go a few doors down one night and to get dressed and look good. A strange impulse! I later found George Clooney was at the establishment pouring drinks and hanging out after filming the descendants in Honolulu! Now THAT is a regret! I could have hung with George! But I do have a pic with Morgan Freeman!

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  17. A wonderful Story. Very nice.

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  18. That is a great story, Sandi, and No, not a ridiculous story, but a part of your young life. I have been writing short stories about my childhood and youth, so my kids will know who there mom was. I think you should do the same. Short stories are the best. They are interesting, and tells a lot about the writer.

    ~Sheri

    by the way, I like his music too.

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  19. Sandi, I love this story. What a fantastic memory and experience. And Irish twins...yep!

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  20. Hi Sandi, What a neat memory. Thanks for writing it up and sharing with us. For whatever it’s worth, if I could go back to those days, put myself in your shoes, I would have done exactly as you did. Or, didn’t. At that age … absolutely. :-) Happy New Year to you and yours. I’m looking forward to another year with Dandelion Tea. John

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  21. That`s a great story! Amazing that you got so close. I don`t know Bono, but I can sense the excitement of a time of life, how you so wanted to meet him and ask him!

    I like the comment above when she says that God did see your desire, and gave you that moment. How precious!! You know what I see now, I see you sitting that close to God, its just a vision of you sitting close to Him, not needing to say anything, just being with Him...

    dot dot dot !! ♡

    You open Your hand and satisfy the desire of every living thing. Psalm 145:16

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    1. Thanks, Shayndel, for that beautiful comment! :)

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  22. There are regrets and there are REGRETS :)
    In the end, I know you're right when you say, "God didn't need the question asked, He already knew how Bono felt about Him."

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  23. By the way, have you seen the video (maybe YouTube) in which Bono visits with Eugene Peterson (The Message)? It's really neat!

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  24. while reading your story what i found similar between both of us that our reaction to our fascinated characters is same .

    I was hhuge fan of a movie and drama director (in movies and dramas i see through the directors's point of view than actors) and had great affection to meet him and ask him so many things to hear from his his views about life and stuff but the day i met him i was calm and silent :)

    i think this incident was lovely and brought message to you that somethings are better to leave upon realization than asking

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    1. "but the day i met him i was calm and silent"

      :)


      "somethings are better to leave upon realization than asking"

      I think this is very, very true.

      Thanks, Baili.

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  25. What a totally amazing story!! I have often wondered the same thing, if Bono is still a committed Christian.

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  26. That is acool story! Loved reading it! Janice

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  27. Great story and like you said God already knows. : )

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  28. Oh Sandi!
    I love Bono too!
    He is a fantastic man, he knows that democracy is broken in my country.
    He condemned it.
    I kiss.
    Biparted weekend:)

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  29. I am so impressed by your story.

    -Elijah

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  30. Hello dear Sandy!
    What an amazing story!
    I’m also a fun of Bono and i like he’s songs!
    When he had a concert here in Athens,my daughter went and she was so pleased! Thank you for sharing! Wishing you a lovely day and a happy weekend!
    Dimi...

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  31. There are many 'gods' raised up in this world, even now. I ended up screaming at a Cliff Richard gig when I was a young teenager. I remember that I did feel a little silly though, but I was just following what my friends were doing.

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  32. What a wonderful story and a great memory. Treasure it always.

    God bless.

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  33. Nice memories Sandi. I was never into U2 or Bono myself.

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