Back from the dad
A road trip with State, (very) grown men who, after 30 years, conceal zero punk rock illusions
Published: May 11, 2011
After the show, it's simple: The band loads the van and heads back to Michigan. Porkins, who slept most of the trip down, takes the wheel, and Woodward (who still hasn't slept) navigates the winding path back to the expressway. Around 7 a.m. the van stops at a gas station and Porkins and Tendler jump out. I head in. A few minutes later I walk back out and see the van pulling out into the road. It takes me what seems like a full five seconds to believe this is happening before I take off sprinting after the van, my coat and cell phone inside it, waving my arms and yelling. It's no use. They're half-asleep and merging onto the expressway, and they think I'm still in back. I don't even know what city or state I am in.
Forty minutes and a few frantic phone calls from a borrowed cell later, the van returns. "Head count" and "buddy system" jokes ensue.
Woodward, who still hasn't slept, looks shot. He talks about how fucked his body is from years of performance abuse and how exhausted he is from driving and playing; how he hopes it didn't show the night before, but he was wiped out during the performance; how he wanted to sleep afterward, but he had to navigate.
The rest of the ride home, everyone is sort of loopy, talking over one another and stringing together sentences with expletives.
As we roll into Michigan, a terrible snowstorm slows our progress, and, as we crawl along US-23, Woodward hopes the snow means no school on Monday. He needs to sleep.
When we finally reach my Ypsilanti driveway, I'm loaded down with State records and swag. Outside the van, Woodward shakes my hand, and it feels like we've been through something together. I go inside, and he gets in the van and drives off. He still has to drop off his bandmates before heading back to his home just outside Chelsea, where his wife, Aviva, and kids are waiting for him.
State plays at the Psychedelic Ball & Punk Dance Party on Friday, May 13, at the Blind Pig, 208 S. First St., Ann Arbor; 734-996-8555; $10 18-21, $7 21 and older; with Shitfucker, Mr. Clit & the Pink Cigarettes and the Jobys; doors at 9:30 p.m. See statelive.blogspot.com for more State info.
> Email Eric Gallippo