17 March 2010
What I learned about myself by going to see the Pixies
1. I am old.
I was looking around and thinking that this is a very old crowd. I was looking at the band and thinking how they’d got old (Even older than me, of course. Sorry Pixies.), but probably do yoga and eat healthy food in an effort to maintain their youthfulness like many of us. Then I realised that the crowd was probably mostly my age. Damn!
2. I sat in the seats.
In the old days I would’ve made sure that I queued, overnight with a sleeping bag in the rain if necessary, to get tickets for the floor so I could be in the mosh. But it didn’t even occur to me to do that this time. Actually, a friend was the first one to find out about the tour and kindly offered to organise the tickets online. Good on her too, because this was about four months ago. I’ve never been that organised.
3. I find it hard to be at a gig and sit still.
I never understood the restraint it would take people to sit and watch a gig nicely in a seat. But then, I’ve always been a bit of a dancer. However, being up in the stands, it does feed the vertigo if you dance with too much movement, so I did a sort of half-dance thing so I could at least feel the music. The women in front of me were quite drunk on glowing cocktails, however, and were unrestrained by the vertigo monster.
4. I’m prone to bouts of nostalgia.
In the old days, every gig I went to would’ve been in a small venue, heavy with the scent of smoke and marijuana, sticky underfoot from spilled beer and rum and cokes, crowded, dirty, young, and with sweat raining off the ceiling. I would’ve been high on adrenaline, screaming every word from the top of my voice and felt one with the band and the crowd, never worrying about the fact that I’d be hoarse, deaf, and a couple of kilos lighter the next day. And I would’ve loved every minute of it.
5. My gig-going behaviour may or may not be changing (it could just be society)
At this show I put cotton in my ears to make things clearer and to save my, probably already damaged, hearing. I sang every couple of lines or so unless it was one of my favourites. I thought about getting hydrated before I went and didn’t end up having a beer at all because I was driving (and actually paid out for safe parking). The numbers on the floor were controlled with wristbands and each person was directed to their padded seat by a smiling usher. The venue was non-smoking (I’m not a smoker anyway), shiny and new, air-conditioned, and sold the aforementioned cocktails in plastic glasses that glow in different colours and make me think of Lady Gaga. No, I didn’t have one. I drew a line.
6. I’m not that old.
I found myself watching the floor crowd much of the time and wishing I’d thought to try and get tickets for that. I was totally jealous of those people jumping as a huge amorphous unit and becoming ensconced in the music like in the old days. I even saw a couple of people make an attempt at crowd surfing. I should’ve made more of an effort to get onto the floor. I might be old, but I’m not sure if I’m ready to sit down yet.
And here is 1 minute of Debaser for your viewing pleasure from a very long distance and in very poor quality. Enjoy.