You say this ain't the end to me
Fall down, pull the rug under me
Feels like I'm falling but I tell you
I'm not going down
Zebrahead--Over The EdgeLast weekend I went to the Warped Tour. If you do not know what the Warped Tour is, then shame on you. Basically, it is a bunch of bands touring in a festival-like atmosphere. I dropped $35 of EagleMan's hard earned money to buy myself a ticket to see one band. One of my favorite bands has decided to abstain from touring in any city remotely close to where I am, and therefore, I had to see them at Warped Tour.
Warped Tour is filled with 30 minute sets of many semi-popular bands. The good bands take up 3 stages, while all the crappy bands fill up the remaining 5. I was interested in seeing only one band, but to fill time between my arrival, the best band of all-time, and my departure, I checked out some other acts. Thursday was great, as was Less Than Jake. Armor For Sleep was a bit of a disappointment, as they play a lot of mellow songs and it did not translate well into a parking lot stage. NOFX sucked. I hate them. Unfortunately, I missed The Academy Is . . ., but at least I saw Motion City Soundtrack (oh, wait, I left halfway through their set to get a beer). Senses Fail looked pretty damn good from a mile away though.
But my glorious savior, beer, was hard to come by that day. Not only was it 100 degrees outside, but a large beer cost me $7.50. Motherfucking highway robbery. Who the hell would pay that for a beer? I mean other than an unabashed alcoholic like myself? Yeah, so I drank a few. Of course, they did not start selling until 2 p.m., and I was jonesing for a beer around 12:30 (which incidentally was a little after we arrived).
I was smart though, I brought in an unopened bottle of water (if opened it would be confiscated upon entry). I was able to refill this bottle several times ($3.75 for a bottle of water? Fuck You!), and alternate beer and water so I would not pass out from dehydration.
But the entire day was going through the motions until Zebrahead took the stage at 5:15. I saved my energy for this performance. For all the others I hung back, tapping my toes like a 90 year old at a jazz bar. But when Zebrahead took the stage, I went off. They are one of my favorite bands, and it has been two years since I last saw them. Last time, I was 23, still a respectable age for going fucking nuts at a concert, but now I am 25, and a future lawyer, one day to be a pillar of the community.
Once they hit the first chord of Playmate of the Year, I forgot all that shit. I went nuts. Jumping around, helping kids get up to crowd surf, shit I was even a mosh pit for a couple seconds.
It was my release. Better than ejaculation. Everybody experiences music a different way, and when you are two yards from the band, surrounded by people you have never met, but know you share a sacred common interest, you can act how you want. You let the music dictate what you do, and the music compels each person differently. If you want to jump, then by all means, jump. If you want to throw horns in the air and bob your head, go forth. If spinning around in circles is your bag, then do it, no one cares. We are all here for the same reason.
But at the same time, we are all lemmings. If you watched the World Cup like I did, because you have nothing better to do (like work), you would see each country had cheers, long exhaustive cheers. In the US, our cheers are things like "Go, Go, Go!" or "*clap* *clap* *CLAP*" We suck at cheers. We need a Jumbotron or organist to tell us what to do.
The same is true with bands. Sometimes they feel the need to tell us when and how to clap, what lyrics to recite, or what actions to take. Personally, I feel that is insulting. The band is telling us that we are too stupid to know how to react to the music they play. And for the most part, they are right. Americans are stupid. But I transcend those people, and refuse to play along. I never follow along with the Simon Says that the band espouses.
Unless Zebrahead is on the stage. They could tell me to commit mass murder, and I would have to think twice before deciding against it. So when the lead singer for Zebrahead called out for a circle pit during their second-to-last song, I gleefully complied. A circle pit is basically the audience running around in a circle. It seems pretty stupid, and it is, but when the band tells you to do it, you think it is the best idea since DC*.
So they launched into their song, and I started running. I was pretty drunk at this point, despite the oppressive heat, and soon learned that a bunch of people running in a circle was a death trap. Some people ran too slow, some too fast, and I bit it hard because I could not find the happy medium. I tripped and fell not once, not twice, but thrice (they did not play (Thrice is a band)). Yeah, I kept going even though I knew it was a death trap. I was feeling the music, or something like that. Maybe I was just shithoused. I ripped my pants and ripped my knee open. The wound proceeded to bleed through the next song, and ten minutes afterwards before I noticed it. By the time I noticed, my pants were drenched in blood.
I felt so cool. I had a battle wound. A Zebrahead battle wound.
I am going to wear the blood soaked, ripped pants on the first day of classes. Everyone is going to ask me what the hell happened, and I am going to say, "Never ever fucking sue Wal-Mart. Those guys play for keeps."
*Yes, Direct Current did not work out in the end. An Edison failure, but when it was introduced it was the main ideal. It took a couple of years for AC to take over, but at first people thought DC was the greatest thing ever. Then they were introduced to AC.