Prior to the second encore, Ed came back on stage with a smoke and something behind his back, indicating he wanted to show the crowd some of his early Christmas presents. “One of the most random gifts I’ve ever received was tonight. Someone brought this to the show with no note, no nothing, and I have to say: I appreciate that. Just giving unconditionally, he gave me this [holds up pedal]. It is a giant-sized Morley pedal, and I didn’t have one. I’m very hard to buy for. Thank you, whoever you are.”
Well, Ed, this fan’s name was Homero, and his reply is “You’re welcome.” The only problem that night was Homero never made it into the show.
In the fall of 2002, deep into Riot Act new album hysteria, Pearl Jam played four hometown shows in Seattle: a deuce each at the Showbox and Key Arena. Obtaining tickets to the former was as difficult as any post-1992 club show. Homero, like many other fans, was ticket-less, but showed up at the Showbox in the hopes of scoring admission.
In an email to TwoFeetThick.com, Homero told us that his lack of a ticket forced him to use desperate measures. He wrote that he began walking around the Showbox holding up the pedal and yelling “Mike McCready’s guitar pedal for your ticket!” Homero admitted, “Back and forth I crazily kept yelling and of course [I got] no takers. First off, people [were] thinking ‘this guy is nuts’ and, secondly, ‘who would ever give their ticket up for some piece-of-so-called PJ gear?’”
The result of this pretend pedal-pushing? “Getting tired of carrying this pedal around I finally gave up” claims Homero, “I went to the back door of the Showbox and said to the dude ‘Give this [pedal] to the band.’” Returning to the front door for some last-minute hope, Homero still could not get in to the show so he returned to his hotel room.
“Two nights later, I’m walking the concourse of Key Arena and some friends I met from Boston tell me ‘Homero, your pedal was at the show.’ Honestly, I thought the guy who opened the back door to recieve the pedal just threw it in the dumpster. I was floored some how I made it to the show anyway, not in physical form but through the pedal.”
You can see Homero’s Christmas 2002 present to Eddie in the DVD Live At The Showbox available from the Ten Club.