When my ex-boyfriend Mark and I were dating, he never missed an opportunity to tell me what he thought of my college roommate, Kimberly.
"Seriously, Stephanie," he'd say, "She might be the nicest person I've ever met."
I suppose the fervor and frequency of his remarks could've hurt my feelings, especially since in his head he was probably also thinking, "I sure wish you could be more like her," his high praise of Kimberly never bothered me because he's right.
Kimberly is definitely one of the nicest people I've ever met.
She has the infinite wisdom, sweet disposition and comforting tenderness of an 80-year old grandmother and the maturity level and sense of humor of a 13-year old boy in the body of a young, hot mom. Strange, yes, but it somehow makes sense. Anyone in Kimberly's presence can't help but feel good, because she makes them feel that way.
So when she told me she was coming to Atlanta for a weekend visit, I was committed to spending as much time with her as possible.
Even if it meant dropping $60 to go to a Counting Crows concert.
Don't get me wrong, I used to rock out to some "Mr. Jones" back in the day, but this was not a concert that was even on my radar. Honestly, I didn't even know the Counting Crows were still touring, or even still a band for that matter.
But Kimberly was really excited and even though I'd heard they are terrible live, I was excited to hang out with her and Erin, our other dorm mate who possesses two of the greatest qualities I can find in another person - a. she laughs at my jokes and b. she makes me laugh so hard my stomach hurts.
Telling people that I was going to see the band elicited a variety of different responses. Some, like me, were surprised to hear that Counting Crows was still a band.
Several got goofy, nostalgic grins on their faces, a la Kimberly, remembering where they were the first time they ever danced to "Rain King."
A young girl I work with shrugged her shoulders and said, "Counting Crows? That's a band? Never heard of them." I took a deep breath so I wouldn't slap her and then walked away, questioning to myself my taste in music.
The crowd selling out a Counting Crows concert was as diverse as the reactions I received and as much of an enigma as Kimberly.
Apparently cool enough to attract people like the handsome stranger who sold me his extra ticket and then offered to buy me a beer, but still uncool enough to attract people like this guy.
Maybe Adam Duritz's dread locks were a little too long and he was a little too sweaty. (We were all sweaty. It was crazy hot in there.) But he puts on a great show. And I'm not just saying that because I would do anything for Kimberly. Even see a concert full of old timers who think they're still young (myself included.)
He played "Anna Begins," and it took me right back to high school - not the angst-ridden, self-loathing parts, but the carefree, nothing-bad-will-ever happen-to-me high school.
And watching Kimberly (successful businesswoman and mother of two) lift her iPhone high in the air to record every song was worth the price of admission.
For real. That happened.