The first two segments of Shasta McBoogie's story could be written off as the foolishness of youth.  Why put yourself in those positions?  Why not just stay home to begin with?  Part 3 shows that Shasta's shadow follows me everywhere, even work.Shasta McBoogie once showed up exclusively during party situations at bars.  Nowadays, old age keeps me in most nights.  Sometimes, however, I have to show my sad, old face in the name of raising money for the kids.

Last Thursday night I was too much of a child to admit to the gang at the Lonestar Que-4-Kids that I was worn out and was headed home.  Not even 15 minutes prior to sneaking out I'd told Jarrod with Big Daddy's BBQ that I was in it for the long haul and was gonna stay for the Curtis Grimes show.  Nope.

Not that it was even a lie, it was more like Shasta just took over my brain and said, "Tomorrow morning you're driving your son to basketball practice at 5:30". I just felt lame that I was leaving the bar for bed at home when there were still babies, children and even puppies still awake and partying away.

See? Curtis and I are cool with each other. Nothing personal when I left the show early. Shasta McBoogie just has full control. Photo by Townsquare Media

Shasta McBoogie, in his old age, has even started skipping out on tabs.  I went and saw some friends in Sloppy Joe play at the Patio on Main in Temple a few weeks back.  I decided that it was time to head home, and it had been so long since I'd been out at a bar I forgot one important thing... to pay the tab.  I'd given them my card, so it's not like I did the drink-and-dash.

It was incredibly embarrassing to start sending Facebook messages the next morning, explaining my stupidity to the bar staff and bar owner.  I wasn't drunk or anything that night prior.  I just get it in my mind that it's time to head for the exit and nothing will stop me.  Shasta McBoogie strikes again.

This past Monday night was yet another one of those nights where Shasta emerged from the darkness to be seen.  I ran into an old Waco buddy from my time working in radio in that market, and he told me his former band was getting together for a reunion.  This particular band, Willis Brownstone, was a mainstay during my Alaska years.  I'd listen to their CD driving through the mountains and it became my Alaskan soundtrack.

It's been so long since I (or Shasta) have gone out in a non-working situation that I actually had to set myself a reminder in my phone so that I wouldn't forget.  It was perfect.  They were playing the early time slot and I could be on the road back home by 9pm.  As it turns out, another Waco buddy's band took the opening slot and pushed Willis Brownstone back to 9pm for a start time.

This old pic shows what happens when I stay out too late and don't get my beauty sleep. Photo credit TSM

I briefly thought Shasta might make a 9pm appearance before the band even went on stage, but I grabbed a beer and toughed it out, lame as I am.  I'm very glad I stayed for the set, but at 9:45 as they were still putting their instruments down I was getting into my best Shasta mindset.

It wasn't a full-on Shasta McBoogie appearance, because I knew these grown men with kids and wives and day jobs and wouldn't be tearing it up late into the night.  At the very least, they'd understand that I needed to leave.  I went down the line, from guitar to guitar to bass, saying my "goodbyes", "congrats", "it was great" and so on and so forth.  The only reason this can even be Shasta-like is because I missed saying my goodbye to the drummer, Jeremy.

It wasn't until I was halfway home that I thought about my mistake.  By then it was far too late.  Shasta McBoogie had come out of retirement, like an old boxer, for one final embarrassing display.  The legend of Shasta McBoogie lives on, and it will apparently carry on until I either find friends lamer than me, give up and just party on (Wayne), or man-up and stop sneaking away when I could just say, "I'm leaving", like a man.  Probably not gonna happen, though.