Bus Ride of Dreams


Within thirty seconds, my life changed. I’m not sure if this happens to often where a fourteen year old’s life changes like mine had, but it sure did happen to me.

In 2009, I wouldn’t really call myself an outcast as much as I would call myself displaced. Sure, I had plenty of friends, I was well involved in the school sports organizations, jeez I was even the Junior High Class President. I had a funny ambition rattling deep inside, but I was never sure where it would lead me down the road. The ambition was there, but my personal perspectives were slowly beginning to suffer under the intimation of becoming just another face in the crowd.

SO as the story goes, I was sitting on a school bus with one of my best buds on our way back from “High School Step Up Day” which was about as exciting as it sounds. My friend and I were playing a game that came out with the original iphone touch called “Tap Tap” which was somehow similar to Guitar Hero; therefore, I was immediately intrigued. The game involved tapping the button when a musical note approaches the bar. My friend picked a song randomly, and we began tapping away at her screen. While I was frantically hitting the notes as fast as I could, something was happening deep within my soul (as ridiculous as it may sound). The song that Brenda had chosen ignited the fire that I’ve been looking to identify with. It wasn’t the game that filled my senses with unmatched excitement, it was the lyrics, and the harmony of the instruments that undeniably reassuring rhythm that came from those tiny ipod touch speakers on the bus home that day. This was the awakening of the perspective I’ve been looking for, the perspective I would have never found through small talk. It wasn’t just a rythm, a lyric, or a perspective voice; it was Death Cab.

Sure enough, I ran home, looked up the song (it’s called Sound of Settling fyi), and fell in love over and over again as it graced my ears, but it wasn’t enough. I researched more of their songs, eventually polishing off each album, and surely I still wasn’t satisfied. I had to see them live, but I figured I still had time; they would be touring for several years (or so I had hoped).

The point is, Death Cab for Cutie became my mentor for getting through that odd transition of being the displaced kid in junior high school to being the kid who knew exactly who she was, where she was going, and what she wanted to accomplish. A lot of the credit for that goes to my family, but for some reason that I can’t quite put my finger on, Death Cab was always there. Benjamin Gibbard’s voice broke a barrier unlike any other. It’s funny how at times when you don’t want to speak to anyone, music becomes the only voice you need to hear. Five years later, here I am, anxiously awaiting my chance to finally see the heroes of fourteen year old Mia in July at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley.

Thirty seconds of “Sound of Settling” was all it took (:

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