Wednesday, August 06, 2008

We will rock you.....then sock you

On a Saturday morning, Marathon Man and I hoped on a train to Long Island to attend the Warped Tour. Basically it is 50-60 alternative and punk bands playing in one massive outdoor concert.
They had six stages set up with a new rotation every hour. I was in heaven. Well it did help that I saw my favorite punk band perform. Some highlights were, Cobra Starship, Angles and Airwaves, Say Anything, Beat Union, and of course Against Me!
Another one of my favorites, Anberlin, was disappointingly horrible live. Gym Class Heros and All Time Low were a mess and one-hit wonders. I regret not checking out Reel Big Fish and Pennywise, but there were literally too many great bands going on at the same time to catch them all.
Now advertisements for an outdoor, all-day concert in Long Island must have read “teen freak fest orgy”.
I swear 90% of the people in attendance were between the ages of 16 and 18 who thought this would be a fun alternative to trolling around THE MALL. The only people who looked older than us were obviously bored chaperones. All the skanky little girls wore bikini tops with cut off and rolled jean shorts/hot pants or dangerously short skirts. Okay, you may be thinking jailbait-heaven, but there were many serious examples of childhood obesity out on display. The girls would write in magic marker on their chests or stomachs catch phrases like “free hugs, make out with me, free sex, etc”. What the hell! Okay ever so much loosing my faith in the next generation.
The teenage boys would walk around shirtless with similar crude phrases written across their white hairless un-muscular chests. Since it was super sunny all day, I secretly hoped all of them would get a nasty sunburn and the marker would act as a sun block so they would have “will work for blow jobs” etched on their red chests for a few weeks. Actually that happened to a college roommate of mine back in the day. The only difference is that he had “I (heart) boobs” emblazed on his arm for a month. Awesome!

Thankfully I love punk and alternative live music so much, otherwise the little teenage shits would have ruined the day for me. The venue (a giant ass parking lot) couldn’t sell beer because of the minor majority, so they decided to sell bottles of water for $5 and Gatorade fore $6. Fortunately M-Man and I snuck in a water bottle that we were able to refill all day at a random water truck spigot (don’t ask, it was hot and we were resourceful). The kids obviously were not there for the music, so they decided to entertain themselves by chucking full bottles of water or Gatorade into the crowd or at the band. Yeah full bottles! Not only is that an absolute waste of money (well probably their parent’s money) but it was highly destructive. The bottle would be flung into a crowd of fans gathered in front of the stage and I would see the impact of water spraying everywhere and a person hitting the ground clutching their head. The worst was during the Angels and Airways set when the teen assholes kept tossing the bottles at the lead singer who made an attempt to connect with the crowd and move to the edge of the stage. I kept holding my breath as I would see several near misses. Actually one kid chucked a full bottle far enough to hit the drummer’s cymbal. Yeah, it was mildly amusing for about a split second, but if I was a performer and these little shits hit me or my equipment with a water bomb, I would have unplugged and just ended the show right then and there.

Okay okay okay, I just realized this is more of a rant post than a celebration of awesome live music. Am I getting old? Too old for live music? I hope not. I plan on still attending concerts well into my 60’s and rocking out. Then I can be the “who is that old chick….is she the band’s mother or something?”


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