Right away I told The Professor about MeTooing The Pizzas Boss.
“He’s not even a Reality Traveler,” I said. “He’d never heard of it before. He’s just some regular Reality who normally hides his deepest hopes and regrets. He didn’t have to MeToo me, but I made him somehow.”
“Interesting,” The Professor said. “So it was the song that led to the deeper MeToos.”
“You like songs a lot, don’t you?”
“They’re my favorite thing.”
“And I hear you have a very high and powerful voice.”
“The Voice Professor said it was a Gift from The Goddess of Music.”
“You know, Bluebird, every Traveler has a MeToo Speciality, meaning they MeToo particularly well via one thing. You may very well be a MusicMan Traveler who MeToos via these old Radio songs.”
“Wow, maybe you’re right.”
“It’s time to put this to the test. The big annual MeToo Festival is coming up, and many Reality Traveler Training School Alumni will be in attendance. For entertainment we’ve assembled a band of Music Travelers. I want you to sing this “Thunder Road” with them in front of everyone and try to MeToo us all.”
“I’ve never sung in a band before tho.”
“What if I suddenly get the Dead Voice and can’t MeToo anyone tho?”
Before he could speak I answered myself tho.
“I know,” I said. “It’ll be good to get my ass kicked.”
“No, Bluebird,” he said. “There are times when you need to get your ass kicked, but this is not one of them. This is one of those times when you need to kick some ass.”
Then I went home and dug out The Voice Professor’s Rules for Singing. I still hated The Rules, and it seemed impossible to deliver pizzas without singing in the car, but I also knew they were the only way to make 100% sure I wouldn’t get The Dead Voice. I started following them everyday, even tho they were boring and painful.
Then I hadta get together with the Reality Traveler band to rehearse. They had a guitarist and a drummer and a keyboard player and a harmonica player and a saxophone player. It was everything we needed to do the song right. But I hadn’t been around many other Music Travelers and didn’t know if they would MeToo me.
“Are you guys alright with Bruce Springsteen’s “Thunder Road?” I asked them.
“Oh my Gods,” the band said. “Are you kidding?”
“Oh no, is it not advanced or Reality Traveler enough? I know they play it on The Radio.”
“No, only MeNotzies hate songs just cuz they’re on The Radio. We meant are you kidding, that’s one of our favorite songs.”
“So all Reality Travelers really do love Bruce Springsteen?”
“Yes. He puts it all out on the line, and and goes for broke, and swings for the fences, and makes a stand, and plays for keeps, and beats the odds, and never surrenders, and makes it happen, and goes all the way, ya know?”
“Alright! I love all those things about him,too.”
Then we started playing the song, and they knew how already, and they were all great at their parts, and when I started singing with them it actually sounded just like the real Bruce Springsteen & The E Street Band.
When the MeToo Festival came around we felt ready. The Training School Auditorium was completely full of former and current Reality Traveler students. First the band got up on stage and played their own songs. They were all about Reality Travel, and they were good, but it still seemed hard for some Realities to MeToo songs they’d never heard before.
Then the Professor got up to the microphone.
“Attention please,” he said. “Now I’d like to invite to the stage one of the Reality Travel Training School’s current students, The Bluebird.”
I liked the sound of it, and everyone clapped for me when I came out. I stood up at the microphone, and they got quiet and waited for me to MeToo them.
“This one’s from the Great List of Old Songs,” I said to them, and then I told the band to “Hit it!”
The piano and harmonica started playing and there was no turning back. They played thru the intro, and then it was time for me to come in and sing the first line…
“Screen door slams, Mary’s dress waves…”
At first I was cautious, low, and unpowerful. It wasn’t like Springsteen at all, cuz I was too afraid to go for broke, cuz I didn’t wanna be broke.”
But then I saw The Professor in the front row, nodding his head, and then some mysterious Reality in the back suddenly yelled out “Bruuuce!”
And then others in the crowd start following along. It gave me power, which I gave straight to my voice, and then I started nailing it. The crowd started clapping to the beat, and you could hear some go “Woo!” and “I Lovethis song!” And then they started MeTooing it. One by one Realities in the audience start shouting out The Great List of towns they had to Hit the Thunder Road outta.
Philadelphia Suburbs (New Jersey) Philadelphia Suburbs (Pennsylvania) The Wilderness (Pennsylvania) Chicago Suburbs Baltimore Suburbs The Middle-of-Nowhere (Massachusetts) The Slums of L.A. Arizona Desert Oasis The Capital of America California Agricultural City (Grapes) Florida Future Adult Training Town NewYorkCity The far off and not as exciting as you’d think Realities of Paris France The Badlands Where-ThePlains-Doesn’t-Meet-TheMountains Indiana Industrial City (Pollution) Michigan Industrial City (Poison) Suburbs
“Ohio Industrial City (Rubber)Suburbs!” I added to the list.
And then I started going as high and powerful as I could go, and sweat started coming out of my forehead, and the Springsteen-style bandana I was wearing could absorb all of it. I could feel every MeToo in the crowd turning into one big collective MeToo like a feeling from The Other World. And it made me leap up and dive right into it and soar in flight right thru it. Finally I got to the last and best line and sang It’s a Town-Full-of-Losers and I’m pulling outta here to win with all the highness and power I ever had.
I used up all my energy and fell from the sky and collapsed on the stage, and when I looked up the crowd was standing on their feet and making a huge thunderous sound of clapping and Woos! and MeToos! The Professor came up on stage and grabbed me and picked me up.
“Yes!” he said. “You just kicked ass.”