(photo by Lee Ka-sing)
(11) A Dedicated Fan (or Two)
Mrs. Bento continued to read the Blue Journal, which she found MM's attachment to JM quite intriguing, and was wondering what would happen next.
"In fact, I did not forget Joni Mitchell completely after settling in Toronto. After all she is a national treasure (in the past I always thought she was American). I went to her concert (Joni Mitchell and Bob Dylan) in Maple Leaf Gardens on October 29, 1998. I remember this so clearly just because I did some research on what I forgot. This one, together with the Ottawa concert, would be her last full performances in Canada.
It is a shame that I vaguely remember anything from that concert. Not how she looked like, how she sounded nor any number from her song list. I must have missed, by heart and mind, almost thirty years of her work. Besides seated high on the third floor left wing from the stage, the only other thing I remembered that night was I lost my car after the concert. It was taken away by a toll truck and we spent a few hours locating it, paid a handsome amount to getting it back. She was in Toronto again on her 70th birthday, in a tribute concert as part of the Luminato Festival in 2013, which I had also skipped. Me dumbhead thinking, it wouldn't have made any impression anyway. But it would be the last time we'd hear her sing, by surprise, and see her swing. Too late, I don't think I'd ever have another chance to see her in person. Blissfully, I can find most of the videos and clippings of her from YouTube.
But what's the point of seeing the real Joni? Snap out of it. Better off locking her image, the one that I always associate with, forever in my heart, warm and safe. Surely in this captivated space, Joni and I could enjoy all the time we have, engage in as many conversations as we want."
How can a person called herself a dedicated fan if she kept missing the opportunities to hearing and meeting her idol? Mrs. Bento shook her head in disbelief. By contrast, she remembered a guest of hers, Barbara. She is a fervent fan of the Canadian band Barenaked Ladies. In fact Mrs. Bento recognizes this band and knows a song or two from the radio. Ginger sometimes does find her mom quite smart. Beside couching Sci-fi and monster movies with her, this is another point that proves her mom isn't that out of touch.
Yes, Mrs. Bento remembers Barbara quite well. She came from the city of Winterhur from Switzerland. The main reason of her trip was to see a rock concert by the Barenaked Ladies in Kingston. When they talked in the morning during breakfast, Mrs. Bento learned that this was Barbara's 53rd show of the band, and that she had been a vivid follower since 2000.
Never has Mrs. Bento met a real person with such dedication! Barbara has even created a German website for the band. Out of curiosity Mrs. Bento asked which was the first band Barbara encountered and fell for. It was also her band - the Beatles. She still recalls the boyish look and gesture of a younger Paul McCartney when he sang "when I'm 64". And in the wink of an eye he is turning 77.