So here's the story, for all you ladies out there.
A while ago, in anticipation of my surgery, I asked Leslie if I could take her on a date May 8th, because it would be our last free night before I go under the knife. She kept telling me "no" because she was planning a date night for us. I will be honest, I was kinda bummed. I had planned on popping the question before surgery, and now I had no chance of doing it.
Moving on to what happened tonight, May 8th, 2009.
The "date night" she was planning was actually a benefit/silent auction in my honor to assist me in medical bills. Thanks to my insurance, I have saved (in the last few months) around $40,000! Unfortunately, insurance companies aren't fond of paying money and they have put a very small portion of that on me. Small to them is big to me, so I was left with some financial woes. She surprises me with this party, so much so that I was actually SPEECHLESS for the first time in my life. It was amazing. So many friends and family. Probably around 80 people. Quite the showing. As I walked in the door, I notice jars of cash, some checks, and even a dime sitting on a table. Extreme, unselfish generosity. There was a silent auction with hand-made jewelry, photography, music lessons, gift baskets, audio books, you name it. ALL DONATED from my amazing friends! The silent auction was a hit (I wanted to bid on these things, but that would have been counterproductive to the cause of the party). All of this even coincided with my birthday coming up this Thursday.
So me, not being able to have a date night, found myself not wanting to be "out-surprised" by my girlfriend. So in true JonnyUps fashion, I planned on taking over her date, and popping the question. Only now it would be in front of all my best friends and family. I get on the microphone and start thanking people and telling them how important it was to me. Surprisingly, the crowd started making proposal jokes, and causing a stir. So I say some nice things about Leslie (obligatory of course! ha!) and then say, "Well, you're all expecting it anyways..." and I pull out the ring. A hush ran through the room, and then the loudest cheering I've heard since I was famous in Japan (I kiddddd). Leslie finally realized I wasn't joking and was soooo surprised! She of course said yes!
Moral of the story: Do not underestimate my sneakiness.
Total Raised: A LOT. ENOUGH. Enough for me to feel blessed beyond belief.
You, my friends, have changed my life. I am so blessed. Thank you! And Leslie, thank you for saying yes.
Jordan, friend and drummer of As I Lay Dying, has started a blog. He relates metal music to golf, and fills us in on tidbits of his life and touring.
In other news:
AS I LAY DYING DVD goes Platinum in Canada
AS I LAY DYING's first-ever DVD, ‘This Is Who We Are’, sold 4,200 copies in the United States in its first week of release to land at position No. 2 on the Top Music Videos chart. It also debuted at No. 3 in Canada, where the DVD has already shipped platinum.
Commented AS I LAY DYING frontman Tim Lambesis: "I'm completely honored to have our DVD reach so many people in only its first week out. Needless to say, it's a great achievement for our band, but it also goes to show that metal music has been opening new doors. Regardless of what mainstream media pushes, there are enough diehard fans out there to make something like this happen.
With ‘This Is Who We Are’, AS I LAY DYING steps into new territory by releasing its first-ever DVD consisting of three discs produced and directed by Denise Korycki (CANNIBAL CORPSE's ‘Centuries of Torment’ DVD) that provide viewers with live performances and a complete AS I LAY DYING audio/visual history.
What does this mean? Well, it means that my photos have reached 80,000 (according to the Wikipedia gods) Canadians in just the last few weeks! Talk about an opportunity for my shots to be seen. Thanks Canada. Thanks AILD, and thanks friends for your support!