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Raspbernie

The End Of An Era

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It's so nice to see so many of you come back here one more time! Although I've never posted much, I've always checked in once or twice a week to see there's anything new or interesting. Unlike most of you, I never got into social media sites except for this forum and one on a site regarding roads and maps. I'm still thinking of setting up a FB page to help promote my books (two of them, which are resources for instrumental music education students and novice band directors) and my CD (original instrumental new-ageish music; I'll put a link on the Cruisin' Music page later) - but that probably won't happen.

I remember when I was new to the internet and how excited I was finding this site. Even though the forums may be going away, thank goodness the rest will stay in a new format and I'll still keep checking in periodically. Bernie, thank you so much for everything!

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There's just way too much ONGOING passion about Eric's music to let this disappear. I think Bernie miscalculated the fact that this message board has run it's course or served it's purpose.

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Billy and I met inadvertently,at the Dirty Dancing Tour stop at the New Haven Coliseum...I was carrying an EC album that I was hoping to get signed by Eric...(I was working for a beer distributor and the Coliseum was my account, so I had backstage access...I couldn’t wait to meet my idol that night...I actually got my picture taken with EC backstage, by the arenas manager, but, of course, his camera was stolen that night, so I never got to see the picture)...Anyway, Billy and I became kindred Raspberries/Eric spirits and after exchanging phone numbers, we stayed in contact every few months or so, every time either one of us found out a little information nugget about EC, we would call the other....Pre internet days, when info was tough to come by...

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Hi, Bernie! It's very nice to meet you here.

If you close the Community, something new will not add to the site.
I posted that it will be grave...
This Community will show ACTIVITY.
So this site needs "Community".
Consider, please!

And Craig and Bernie,
Larry and I are doing ” POST LIKE CRAZY PROJECT”  to save the Community!!! (^_-)-☆


 

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Thanks Bernie for all of your hard work and passion in creating and then managing this message board for so many years. What bonded all of us was that special, indescribable euphoria, yes euphoria, we experienced while listening to so much of Eric's music. This message board was so therapeutic (maybe the wrong word) as we realized that so many others were experiencing the same thing. A tip of the hat to you Bernie!

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I have to admit that I am starting to panic about this situation...Is Bernie really gonna shut this thing down?...I have talked to LC and we both agreed that this resurgence has been almost as much fun to us as it was in the board’s heyday...I plan on spending most of my day tomorrow going to the library and printing copies of hundreds of pages of my( our) past that I fear may fade into oblivion...I, also, am paranoid that on Tues. Morning, I will go to the site and friends that I hold dearly, will have disappeared into oblivion without any further knowledge of their future plights, delights or just plain day to day humdrum...I’ve written things about me personally on this board, to this group of friends, that I’ve never shared with any of my “real life” friends...So what do we do?...Is there a last minute reprieve, a change of heart?...Many of us have offered help, money, time, ideas, anything we can do to keep this afloat but I really don’t get a reading from Bernie if it merits his consideration...I have read posts from returning members that I had forgotten about and it brings back a wave of emotion and sentimentality that I am almost embarrassed to feel as a 65 year old guy...Archiving is great, but that is the end of the road...The plot never goes forward...It’s like when your favorite t.v. show goes off the air and those characters disappear into reruns, the equivalent to archives...The plot line never moves forward...What happened to elle, or Sue, Craig Benfer, James, etc. ?...the same questions that I had when Knots Landing went off the air...What happened to Karen and Mack, Val, etc...But those were fictional characters and I could reconcile that...You people are not, you are flesh and blood realities to me...You provide an open armed welcome to my foolishness for which I can never thank you enough ...I guess we will find out Tues. morn...Hope it will be a Happy New Year...

p..s...I will start a thread later today where I will leave my e-mail address and hopefully, you will leave yours...

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LC   
3 hours ago, Aventurine said:

And Craig and Bernie,
Larry and I are doing ” POST LIKE CRAZY PROJECT”  to save the Community!!! (^_-)-☆


 

And Susie and GirlFan Tammy, and Bessieboo, who never left, and Sweet Lew Bundles, and Craig, and James, and Elle, too! And others I’m not remembering right now, for which I apologize.

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I had a dream last night. I never have normal, believable dreams. In this dream, Lew and I decided to get all the members of this board together to make a video. We met on a battlefield in Gettysburg to make this video of all of us shouting in unison "Please Bernie. Save the board!" Ok. Not too outrageous I guess. But then we see a woman taking a video with her cell phone of us making our video and then making a phone call to the police. It turns out that making a video of this sort is illegal in the U.S. ???  We all hop in a rented U-Haul truck and go on the run as the police converge on us. At first most of us are in the back being thrown from side to side as the driver evades the police during the chase. James says "Why did we let Lew drive?" Now I am in the passenger seat as we speed towards a draw-bridge that is opening as a boat passes below. I yell out to Lew to stop but he doesn't. "We can make it!" he yells. "We MUST save the board!"

At this point I woke up so I don't know if we were successful. Bernie, in case we didn't make that jump... don't close the message board and have our death be in vain. Save the Board.

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Kirk   

Craig, maybe you should form an 'EC.com message board' therapy group just in case..."Hi, my name is Craig and I dreamed I could save the EC.com message board."

Seriously, though, I used to have Raspberries/Eric concert dreams all the time.  Sometimes they were great (best seats in the house, access to Eric and the band), and sometimes the shows were cancelled for whatever reason.  Art imitating life in my dreams. 

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LC   
2 hours ago, Craig Benfer said:

...At first most of us are in the back being thrown from side to side as the driver evades the police during the chase. James says "Why did we let Lew drive?" Now I am in the passenger seat as we speed towards a draw-bridge that is opening as a boat passes below. I yell out to Lew to stop but he doesn't. "We can make it!" he yells. "We MUST save the board!”

Actually, Craig, knowing Lew, I can say this is a pretty believable picture! And James made a great point in your dream. 

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I want to thank Bernie for giving us the opportunity to unite, and in this case, to reunite. This has been a true haven for so many friends. 

 

Thank you to Eric for creating something so special to all of us. I never would have imagined that his music would lead to many lifelong friendships. I felt kind of unique because of my love for this "forgotten" music. I was so happy to be proven incorrect.

 

Now to the band reunion. To me Raspberries were a true mythical monster. Something that I wasn't really able to fully comprehend. My first show was in Chicago and I still was in disbelief that it was going to happen, even though I was standing in front of the stage surrounded by so many people that felt the same as I did about the band. I would have been happy to just see the show,  but what a show! I went to eight of the reunion shows, and would have been there for many more if possible. The incredible excitement, and anticipation for each show was the most intense high as I could imagine. Without a doubt the most fun I have ever had! 

Thank you to all of the friends I have made here. This is a true community with a very special bond. I won't name names because I would not want to omit anybody who I had the pleasure to share this with. I will always remember this experience with full appreciation and gratitude. 

Jay

 

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I remembered when you jumped on the table at B.B. Kings...I wasn’t really part of this community yet and I said “who the heck is this kook”?...Glad to get to know you...We actually hung out after one of the shows...Highline, I think...Great to see you post again...If this board lasts, I hope it wasn’t just a drive-by posting...Stick around...

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Duane   

What sad news if this really is the end.

I can't thank Bernie enough for this place but I really hope he changes his mind. I've been trying to read all of the "best of" threads that LC has been posting. It seems a shame to delete all of this history. Not just EC's posts, but the great writings of so many board members about so many things. I would hope at the very least, that what is here could be preserved but it looks like this community is not ready to be written off. Maybe this scare was what we needed for a revival of this board.

Bernie...is there any way we can pay what it will take to keep this board going for 2019? I know I would be willing to chip in and it sounds like many here would also. Can you give us a one year reprieve and we see where it goes from there?

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Duane   

Not sure if this is the proper place, but if this is the end I wanted to explain why I left the board. I wasn't an original member but I was here pretty early. I think I was member #23 when it used to list that under your name. I had actually found ericcarmen.com before the message boards but didn't join...just read all of the information that I didn't know about EC. I had a question answered in the old "Ask Eric" feature. Anyway...I dearly loved this place and so many of the members here. After spending most of my adult life alone in my appreciation of Eric Carmen's music, it was great to get to talk to some like minded people...people that "got" Eric Carmen. That EC posted his insights from time to time made it even more special. My time here was always inconsistent...I posted heavy at times and then would disappear from time to time. This was mostly due to my wife's health. Hospital stays, surgeries, etc. would take me away. Some here knew about that but I didn't usually mention it on the boards. Spring of 2014 was an exciting time here. The Essential Eric Carmen was being released in April of 2014. EC was posting about it and very active on the boards then. We were all excited about the collection and the hopes of it relaunching EC's solo career. There was also talk of possible concerts!

My wife became very ill on the evening of May 19th. They did emergency surgery (due to an abdominal blood clot) in the very early morning of May 20th. We said our goodbyes before the surgery because they told us there was a very high chance that she wouldn't survive the surgery. She did survive the surgery but never recovered. She spent the next two weeks in ICU, most of it sedated, and died suddenly on the morning of June 4th, 2014. We knew she wouldn't have a long life, but we thought she had a few years left. I should have been better prepared, but I wasn't. I was in a fog for over three months. I didn't listen to anything in the car. I didn't get on the computer or watch TV. I went to work and spent time with my family, but I was mostly sleep walking through life. As much as music had meant to me my entire life, I lost all interest in it...even EC music! It was a long time before I could listen to music again. By the time I came back here, it was a ghost town. I never dreamed my absence would kill this place!!! :) It might have had something to do with EC's absence, along with everybody's move to facebook, but the place seemed to be a shell of it's former self. I checked back from time to time but never really came back. That's what happened to me. If this is the end, I just wanted to share that.

I will say that I'm doing well now. You never "get over' the loss of a spouse, especially since we had been together for almost 35 years. I spent almost 4 years telling everybody that I would never date or remarry. That truly was my plan. I was content being alone and I was going to focus my remaining time on being the best son, father, brother, uncle, friend, etc. that I could be. As you know, life doesn't always go as planned! Last January, I unexpectly crossed paths with a lady that I went to high school with. I was a year ahead of her in school. She graduated with my younger brother. I was shy in school and afraid of girls, especially the pretty ones. She was very pretty and popular...I never spoke to her in school and hadn't seen her since, even though we both live in the same town. She had recently retired from teaching middle school. If I had a dollar for every time I've heard someone say that she was their favorite teacher, I could probably retire! :) She had never married. She said she was too picky in her early years and when she decided that she was too old for kids, she knew that she wasn't going to get married just to get married. If the right man came along...then fine. If he didn't...that was fine, too. She was content on her own...she had her plan, too! It definitely wasn't love at first sight. Neither one of us was looking. I was definitely not looking. We met when they started a trivia night at a local restaurant. We were both invited by a mutual friend...there were 12 of us there that first night. That was the first time that we had ever spoke to each other. She was so impressed that she didn't come back the next week! We saw each other from time to time but it was a couple of months before we really started talking. It was May before we ever went out on a first date and we have just grown from there. We are now engaged and will marry in 2019. My wife had told me several times that she wanted me to remarry. She thought I would be too young to be alone. I always told her that I would never remarry. I know that I didn't lie to her, but it took quite a while to allow myself to "move on", even though I had her permission. You have to be able to live with yourself, and now I can.

Happy New Year to you all!!!

You have no idea what you and this place has meant to me. Hopefully, 2019 includes this great little community!

 

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