The Six Types of People You See At Concerts

Last week I went to stadium concert, my first of the type in years, for a band that has so suddenly and thoroughly been thrust into the heart of current pop culture (I won’t name names, here, but you HAVE heard them, if not of them. Let’s just say that some nights, I don’t know), that I had to pay almost double the original price to get tickets at all.

                While standing in the crowd, it suddenly hit me that while concert going crowds are definitely some of the most diverse (so many subcultures, styles, and hairdos), they can generally all be fit into a neat little list of “concert-going archetypes.”

                I made this list as soon as I got home, developing 6 such archetypes.

*note: this list applies mainly to stadium concerts for popular bands. The small venue/bar band crowd would be decidedly different, and that is a post for another day!

**additional note: this list was made all in good fun, and not meant to offend anyone in particular… we have all fallen into one or more of these categories at one point or another. I myself am an admitted ‘I Knew Them First’ Guy (admitting you have a problem is the first step to recovery, people!) and have been a #1 fangirl in the past. So take it lightly, and enjoy!



The Power Makeout Couple

                This couple will elbow their way in front of you twenty minutes before the show starts, then spend the next three hours turned away from the stage in a never ending embrace.  Her arms never relent from their vice-like grip around his neck, and his hands never leave her waist, except once every thirty seconds to cup her buttocks.  They kiss a little, often very passionately, but never enough for you to feel justified in asking them to knock it the f*** off.  Instead, they remain locked together, never really talking, staring at the people opposite as though daring them to comment. Every effort to awkwardly avoid eye contact and ignore them from their surrounding concert-goers is interpreted as a validation of their legitimate and undying true love, which is just too epic to be contained, thankyouverymuch.  Everyone else is wondering why they would spend $80 on floor tickets instead of just staying home and ‘watching a movie,’ but these lovebirds don’t care. To them, this whole concert is foreplay, in which proximity has fated you to be an unwilling participant. They will remain for the entire concert, after which they will return home and proceed to rip each other’s clothes off. They will be broken up within 3 days to one week.


Overprotective Dad/ possible pedophile man

                You know the guy. He seems a little old to be at a show like this, and doesn’t seem to be into the music. He stands leaning against a barricade with his arms crossed, watching a group of dancing teenage girls with amazing levels of scrutiny. He could be a supervising adult banished to the sidelines for being ‘like, so uncool’ or he could be a pedophile.  It’s a little up in the air.


Captain Beanstalk

This one is not hard to find, even in a crowd. He’s between the height of 6.5 and 7 feet tall, and chronically standing directly in front of you.  You will spend the concert trying to maneuver your field of vision around the back of his head, utilizing such techniques as the crick-inducing head tilt or standing on your toes. Unfortunately these tactics will only work for a few moments at a time, as he always seems able to anticipate your movements. Eventually you will give up, relying on your imagination and an occasional glimpse of the drummer.


#1 fangirl/boy

                Don’t be confused by the word ‘one’.  The population of #1 fans are legion, and they often travel in groups, which are discernible by their matching homemade t-shirts and facepaint, all of which will exclaim their love!!! For the band, the name of their favorite band member (usually the singer or lead guitarist), and favorite song lyrics. Exclamation points and hearts abound. If the #1 fan is not inclined to be creative, they will at least be wearing a band t-shirt, hoodie, hat, bracelet, or whatever else they bought while raiding the merch table.  They may also be carrying a disproportionate amount of posters, albums, and clothing they hope to get signed.  Identifying behavior includes shrieking, crying, and faux fainting spells when the band comes onstage, and  loud and repeated exclamations of “I LOVE YOU!”, “MARRY ME!”, and “I WANT TO HAVE YOUR BABIES!!”  during a quiet, reflective monologue by the lead singer.




First Time in the Pit Kid

                This is usually a teenaged girl. She will be cute, and have a razored, punky yet flattering hair style, possibly dyed a crazy color, definitely ever-so-carefully-mussed with product to look as though she ‘just woke up that way.’ She will be wearing torn jeans and cut-off gloves. Her shoes will be either Vans or Converse, and each eye will be rimmed with 1/8 of an inch of black eyeliner.  She often uses phrases like “I am so punk rock” or “cuz I’m just hardcore like that” to describe herself.  Before leaving to go to the venue, she updated her Facebook to read something like Which one of you p*****s is gonna meet me in the moshpit? #hardXcore #punkrock #alternative.

                Despite all this, she isn’t even clear on what moshing is, exactly, and has possibly never even been to a show, except maybe to see the Spice Girls when she was six. This becomes apparent when 15 minutes in to the opening set she starts crying and hyperventilating, saying to the surrounding concert-goers, “I have to get out of here.” Her date will escort her out and buy her a bottle of $6 water, and spend the rest of the concert comforting her from the back of the venue, wondering if this destroys or cements his chances of getting laid.

Despit all this, her after-concert status update will be something like eff yeah! Totally got down in the mosh pit! No one bothers to tell her that there are no mosh pits at a Panic at the Disco Show.


The I-Knew-Them-First Guy

                This guy knew about this band before you did, or at least thinks he does, and he wants you to know it. Not only was he listening to this band before their single went viral, he knew about them before this cd even came out, and he perceives their success as a personal attack on his integrity. Usually he wouldn’t listen to such a mainstream band, but this one is just so talented…


The escapades of the #1 fans often cause IKTF guy to dramatically sigh and roll his eyes in disdain, or even evolve into outright mockery.  He’ll often turn to the person nearest him, whether they came together or not, and say loudly, “I hope they play (obscure b-side or demo song) from ( old LP or demo), but they probably won’t. All they play now is singles.”

An extreme case of this will involve IKTF guy being hung up on one of the band member’s previous projects. He is unable to accept that the band member in question has moved on, and still clings to the hope that they will forgo their newfound financial security and success and return to the ‘better’ and ‘less commercially driven’ band. He will comment to anyone that will listen that he hopes the band will play some (insert old band name). He knows full well they won’t, but he wants you to be aware of how much his musical knowledge surpasses your own.


So there you have it! What funny/interesting experiences have you had with these archetypes, and which, if any, do you self-identify with? Do you have any missing archetypes you think I missed? Comment and let me know!


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How ‘Marble Hornets’ Changed My Life

Several weeks ago, I made one of the poorest choices of my life and watched the entire Marble Hornets playlist in one sitting. Somehow I even managed to talk my best friend, Kyle Bullock, who is always a good sport, into watching it with me. 

I figured the whole playlist would be, at most, four hours long. But I was wrong, oh, so wrong. We started watching it at 10:30 on a Saturday night, and by the time it ended (ended is a loose term, because the story is NOT EVEN FINISHED YET, they’re still posting videos) over eight hours later, the sun had fully risen and birds were singing.


darn… well, I guess I’ll have to come back another time, then!

Which is a good thing. because this thing spooked me like crazy, which is saying something, because I am a horror flick fanatic, and have become unmoved by even the best special effects and most well-timed jumpscares. (ok, maybe the jumpscares move me- but that is an important evolutionary reaction, dammit!). Regardless, I was still pretty on-edge the following night, and to make matters worse, my mom was helping her boyfriend move and thus sleeping elsewhere, leaving me alone. In a creeky old house. with two dogs who bark at EVERYTHING that may or may not be a spooky 7-foot-tall faceless business suit wearing phantom monster thing!


seriously, who wouldn’t be scared sh**less?!

You’ll understand why I stayed awake the next three nights, bunkered down in my room with said dogs, trying to distract myself with netflix. 

Eventually I wound down (my mother’s return helped a lot), and can now say that Slenderman only kind of terrifies me, and I’m able to sleep without even my night light, which is buddha-shaped and therefore awesome. 


yeah… searching pictures for this post may have dug up some old demons for me, but now I’m only mildly terrified!

Unfortunately, my sleep cycle has been immensely altered. Formerly I would go to bed at eleven and sleep until eight or nine; Now I seem unable to fall asleep before three AM and rise before 11:30. Fortunately, I currently have no steady job, which has been enabling this horrendous habit.

This makes me feel like a slob, but one good thing has come of it: I have discovered that, due to a combination of being the only being up (the dogs both abandoned me because they find my constant late-night activity annoying) and only paid programming on the t.v., my concentration powers rise exponentially, making it an optimal time to write.

Seriously. I wrote this whole post plus spent two hours working on an essay, all without checking facebook. Ok. almost without checking. Which in this era of technologically induced ADD, I feel is pretty good. 

I’m still trying to get back to a more normal schedule because I think it’s more healthy. and it makes me feel like a lazy waste of space. But until that happens, I’m going to use the extra concentration ability as much as possible, when the only distraction around is myself. and maybe Slenderman. (gawd, I hope not.)


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My review of the Dead Ever After

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Writing ‘What they think I do’ meme

Writing 'What they think I do' meme

alternative last panel: spend time on ragebuilder making frivolous memes….

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Even with the window AC unit at full blast, all our combined body heat is trapped under the covers, and I am sweaty and hot. Mexican hairless- xoloitscuintle, if you want the more exotic name- are often referred to as hot water bottle dogs, good for aching body parts, allergies, and asthma.
I have two, the older yet smaller female, Loopi (named for the Mexican province of Gaudalupe from whence she hails), and a male, Magic (named for the famous basketball player who sponsored the shelter we rescued him from). Both are in bed with me. And their sticky warm skin (yes, they really are hairless) against my own is indeed akin to sharing a bed with a couple of hot water bottles. This would be nice on a biting Winter night, but it is the eve of the eve of July fourth, and we are sweltering.

Normally, Loopi wouldn’t be caught dead sharing a bed with Magic, her sworn nemesis and ever-present annoyance since he stole her lime-light seven years ago when we adopted him. As soon as he noses the covers to be let in (unlike Loopi, he never managed to learn how to properly nudge his way under a blanket), Loopi would quickly exit with a bitchy little growl, translated roughly as, not you again! And spend the night alone in the guest bedroom.

But Independence Day celebrations have already commenced with bottle rockets and roman candles, and more edgy smuggled contraband.  As the night progressed, each explosion, whistle, and pop sent her following more closely on my heels, and waiting pathetically outside the bathroom door when my mother demanded privacy for a shower.
Her anxiety has reduced her policy of not sharing a bed with Magic down to not sleeping on the same side, so I am sandwiched between them, each one lying on either side of my thighs. They both sleep perpendicular to my legs, and I am pinned. Any movement away on my part is taken as a reliquishment of my personal space, which they would immediately claim with and outstretched paw or nose, so I don’t even bother to try to get comfortable.
It is late, and a weeknight, but every once in a while we still hear the echoey boom of a lone firework. I sense Loopi’s ears move together in the dark, but mostly she is trusting, confident that I can protect her from any harm that might be impending.

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the ears of a lady

I wanted my ears pierced, badly. In the coming years I would blame it on my mom, tell her how cruel it was that she had put a two-year-old through that, but in truth, I asked for it. I had grown tired of ‘fake’ earrings, the kind that peel off and stick to your ear lobe by means of a gummy, unreliable adhesive. You could buy a pack of a hundred at the dollar store then, but I disliked them because they rubbed off too easily and got stuck in my hair. Anyway, I wanted to be pretty, like a lady, and wear ‘real’ earrings.

The salon was on the second floor of a shopping center, and my mother carried me inside the automatic doors, which seemed magical to me at the time. You didn’t even have to say open sesame like on Aladdin!

There were three or four stylists in the salon, all of whom oohed and aahed at my doll like long blonde hair and heart shaped face. My mother and I were the only customers. I loved the attention, but hid my face demurely in my mother’s neck.

source: google images

source: google images

They pulled out a large selection of small stud earrings arrayed on a felt display board, each with a different colored stone. I picked an amethyst, and was happy because purple was my favorite color.

Then they brought out the devices they would use to pierce my ears. They reminded me of the hot-glue- gun my mother used for arts and crafts, which she used when applying googly eyes to Halloween ghosts and Christmas penguin ornaments. I would later learn the  true name of these devices from  my father’s late-night viewings of the X-files: guns. They were shaped like guns, made loud noises like guns, and brought pain, just like guns. But I didn’t know that then.

source: google images

source: google images

The stylists had pierced little girl ears like mine before, which is why they brought out two guns. They knew they would only have one shot. My mother held me as two stylists stood on either side of my head, guns- each loaded with one of the purple studs- pressed against my ear lobes and tilted down towards my jugular.

They started to count.

“One, two-” and on three there was a sudden popping sound and the feeling of breaking flesh on both sides of my head, I felt the spiky back of the earrings make contact with the fleshy area behind my earlobes.

I screamed and cried, and then screamed some more. I don’t remember it hurting exactly, but the feeling of shock and betrayal still lingers with me this day. The ladies were smart to do both ears at the same time. There was no way in H E double hockey sticks I would have let them near my ears with one of those guns again.

One of the ladies held up a small hand mirror, hoping a glimpse of the earrings would calm me down and make me feel better. I looked briefly and saw my distorted, tear stained face and immediately shoved my face back into my mother’s neck.

She tried to soothe me for a minute, and when that didn’t work, she began apologizing to the women. They shrugged. It was nothing they hadn’t witnessed before.

My crying subsided into hicoughy little gasps by the time we got back to the car. My mother said she should have taken me when I was a baby, because babies have less nerve endings and can’t feel as much pain.

I wanted to ask her how she could know that if babies couldn’t talk and tell her, but I was still pouting and didn’t want to ruin the mood. Ignoring the instructions of the stylists, I reached up and touched my earlobes, tender and hot around the precious little stone.

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mini-rants: #1-4

We all have our pet peeves, and because I like to rant, here are four of mine!

1. Ice tray etiquette (or lack thereof)

When I was a kid, there was a certain protocol that needed to be followed when preparing an icy beverage: If you take some ice, you need to fill the mold back up with water so you don’t screw over the next person. No one likes drinking warm soda. You obviously agree with that, otherwise you wouldn’t have used the ice in the first place and there wouldn’t be a problem!

Don't be like this frog!

Don’t be like this frog!

On the difficulty spectrum, filling an ice cube tray with water is about as easy a task you can fulfill without having to sit down first. It takes less than five seconds and doesn’t involve any heavy lifting, mental math, or feats of agility. It’s not like you have to babysit the water to make sure it forms ice crystals properly; it’s a fairly automatic process. Still, it seems like everyone I’ve ever shared a fridge with has had problems with this. Are they afraid of filling it too full? Spilling precious water during the two-step journey back to the freezer?

I love it when they leave it by the kitchen sink because ‘it needs to be washed’, but only sometime in the future and by someone other than themselves. Please. It was filled with WATER, kept at temperatures BELOW FREEZING- are you really going to justify wasting soap on that? If it’s got something green and fuzzy evolving in it, by all means, suds it up-but then fill it up.

Bottom line, if you use ice, make some more. It’s just common courtesy.

2. Peer Pressure at the Hand Dryer

I find myself in this situation a lot. It always starts with me entering a public restroom alone, and by the time I finish my business, there’s a line of women out the door. That’s fine. What bothers me is that by the time I’ve washed my hands and have started waving my hands under the lone dryer in the hopes that the lukewarm puff of air will cause the moisture on my hands to evaporate, the woman after me- who pees freakishly fast and washes her hands at the speed of light- is tapping her toes, holding out her manicure like Edward Scissorhands, trailing water on the grimy tile floor.

Some people might be ok going out into the world with still-dripping hands, but I prefer  mine to be as dry as the outside of a cactus. Just one of my neuroses, I guess. But I also hate ‘putting people out’, and usually end up walking out way before my hands have dried properly, wiping them on the lap of my jeans. It’s not the other women’s fault but that of circumstance, but couldn’t they, I don’t know, pretend to fix their hair or something until I’m done? It’s what I do when the situation is reversed!

One of the rare times I think I would have been better off as a man.

One of the rare times I think I would have been better off as a man.

3. ridiculous password requirements

Recently I was making an account online. I won’t name any names, but let’s just say it was for a website whose services I had been bullied (cyber or otherwise) into using.

It had taken 30 minutes, but finally I had managed to cobble a username from a combination of letters, numbers, and underscores that a) I could live with and b) hadn’t already been taken by someone else. Seriously, I must be the most unoriginal person on the planet, because it seems like my top fifty UN ideas are already ‘in use.’ Usually by an account that’s been inactive since the Myspace era.

I thought I was home free. The rest of the form was filled out, all I had to do was pick a password. Quickly I typed my go-to in (it was an account I didn’t really want, after all), retyped it, hit submit, and-

“ERROR: You’re password needs to be at least 9 characters long, contain 1 capitalized character, 2 non-sequential numbers, and one symbol. The first 3 characters cannot be the same. One of these requirements has not been met.”

What the truck? Who do they think I am that I need this much security? George Bush? Next they’ll be asking for a blood sacrifice every time I log on. and then they make you change you’re password every 3-6 months. Seriously. I have so many passwords  that I can’t remember which one goes to which account. Whenever I have to log in, I just keep trying them until one works, or until my account gets frozen, at which point the problem is solved.

One the plus side, I can verify that my Neopets account is now totally unhackable- Even by me!

4. Liesurely changing lanes

By ‘changing lanes’ I mean when I’m in a car that someone else is driving. and a right turn is coming up. and they stay in the left-most lane until the last. possible. moment.

I’m pretty sure the first three rants in this post are universal peeves, but I totally understand if I’m the only person in the world who is neurotic enough for this one. Personally, if I know a turn is coming up, I get in that lane as soon as possible. It’s just easier that way.

But other people like to take their time. They’re not worried about missing their turn or the possibility that some jerk in a pick-up truck might not let them in. I know that I’m not driving and shouldn’t care what other people do behind the wheel, as long as I’m not paying the insurance and am wearing a seat belt. But every time it happens, I feel like I’m about to have an aneurysm.

and I try really, really hard not to be a back-seat driver. But it always feels like a competition with the clock. How long can I last without saying, “Umm, we’re turning right up here”?

I mean, doesn’t it make sense to merge into the lane as soon as it opens up? Do you get there faster by waiting? Would it kill you to save me a headache and just move the fuck over?

I have no idea who this kid is.

I have no idea who this kid is.

So there you have it! installment #1 of my rants. I’m a fairly disagreeable person, so more are sure to come, but in the meantime, what gets under your skin the most? Do you share my rants, or am I just an awful human being? Leave me a comment and let me know!

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