Something like 40 shows into this tour, we're grounded in Denver with a life-threatening disease of the van. For a few weeks now, we've been ignoring a leak from one of the back wheels. Eventually, the fluid was spraying around the inside of the wheel enough to thoroughly soak through the brake pads and essentially cause us to lose our back brakes. As if this doesn't seem an obvious enough sign of trouble, we also have been babying a slow air leak on the other rear wheel caused by what I yesterday noticed to be a giant gouge in the tire, like a spoonfull of rubber had been scooped out, revealing the metal mesh below. Staring down the Rockies on our trek back west, our right minds drove us to a shop.
It was there that the true extent of the danger became known. All this time, our real axle was leaking grease, drying up, disintegrating, and threatening to just rip right off the back of the van, and most likely while we were either climbing or descending one of the steep passes of western Colorado or Utah. So if doing ninety around some icy turn with a compromised tire hadn't killed us, and the front brakes held out long enough to perform double duty on the way down from Vail, surely losing two wheels somewhere up there would have been pretty hairy.
So needless to say, we had to cancel our Provo show for fear of death. So instead of playing music tonight and hanging out with fans and friends, we're holed up in a Starbucks, sucking down hot chocolate, wearing pajamas, having a mac party, and slowly coming to grips with the expense of new tires, new brakes, and a new rear axle.
I'm sorry, Provo. Can we make it up to you all in Salt Lake on the 21st?