Ya Gonna Eat Them Green Beans?
In the early spring of 1991, my husband was close to a fella named Ray who was part owner of Beaver Productions out of Louisiana. They managed concert tours, mostly rock and roll, some country music too. These were multi-million dollar productions that are out on the road for months at a time.
One afternoon Ray called saying he was in a bind, they're having a show in Dallas that night and were a man short for backstage work and some security, would you help me out? My husband said "Of course!"
He went, loved it, and flew to Lubbock a few weeks later to interview for a job as a tour bus driver for Roadhouse Transportation. He got the job.
Not more than 2 weeks after being hired, Roadhouse called and needed him, asap, to fly from Dallas / Ft.Worth to meet a tour already in progress in Buffalo, New York.
It was Clint Black's "Put Yourself in My Shoes" tour with Lori Morgan and Merle Haggard. He was to take over the audio truck as the previous driver had "moved" to take over as the personal bus driver for Lori Morgan.
Just before Memorial Day, I was invited to meet up with the tour while they were recording in Nashville and then ride with my husband to the next show in Seattle, Washington. We had 6 days to travel there.
We'd never been out west, never mind had the chance to drive across the country together, so we did it! It was a blast, too. I remember when we saw these signs, "Continental Divide just ahead" and we sort of knew what that meant, but when we crossed it we looked at each other with expressions of, "what now" written on our faces. I figured this is what you tell others about to impress them that you're "well traveled."
After arriving, checking in, and dressing for a casual dinner at the venue, I came upon some news that floored me. I'd need blankets that night in this particular hotel because they'd already turned off the huge boilers in the basement, that supplied steamed heat for the rooms. I'm a Texan. We don't do cold very politely. I didn't cuss (very loudly) while on the phone.
I finally got to make my way to the venue, found the caterers and fixed myself a plate of sliced ham, boiled potatoes, and green beans, saving room for dessert!
My husband was off taking care of his truck and in walked Merle Haggard, looking much like he always did. He fixed his own plate and sat next to ME! We smiled and ate in relative silence. I was just about to get up to clear my spot when he leaned over and asked, "Ya gonna eat them green beans?"
What do I DO!?! What should I say? OH MY GOSH!
I needn't tell you that Merle Haggard got my green beans. Who'd deny him such a simple request? I said, "Help yourself" and he thanked me.
I told my husband the story and he thought it was hilarious. After that, it was passed around between the drivers and production crew to ultimately become "Roadie Gold."
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