Monday, December 1, 2008

I am Tired and Broken

I hath failed you all again with my false promises. If it makes you feel any better, I was too busy being alone on Thanksgiving with nothing much to do. So I bought a small apple pie (not as good as home made and a bit pointless without the Tofurkey I look forward to all year) and ate it while reading a weird book my friend left me about chess and the French Revolution. That’s as close enough to the traditional as I could get unfortunately. I hear there was a mass Rickrolling during the Macys Parade and I can only imagine my family watching it with no idea what it meant. Oh how I’d like to be a firefly on the wall for that. I know that’s not how the phrase goes, but I don’t want to be a normal fly, they freak me out.

Anyhoo, continuing backwards to two Fridays ago, I got a photo pass to take pictures of some bands I was an embarrassingly big fan of in high school. I don’t quite listen to them as much now, but since I never got to see them back in the day, I thought I should at least make my inner 17-year-old happy. Well, even my inner 17-year-old felt like a geezer in this crowd. I’m pretty sure the guys in the band (who are only a few years my senior) and I were the oldest ones there, and that’s saying a lot coming from someone only about to turn 21. Halifax were the first up and I felt incredibly weird rocking out to their awesome cover of ‘Straight Up’ by Paula Abdul because looking around, I was the only one singing along. Sure, there was appreciative dancing and people seemed to like it, but nobody else knew the words. “Ew, this song is SO old.” scoffed the tiny scene girl to her fashioncore posse standing near me (they all had to be about 14). “Excuse me,” I interjected, “but some of us were alive when Paula Abdul was more than the crazy lady from American Idol.” But it turns out she didn’t mean the original, she meant this cover version was apparently ancient. This version which was released in 2004 on the Punk Goes Pop compilation I listened to obsessively my Junior year of high school. I was still older in 2004 than those kids are now. I wanted to cry. Then I’m pretty sure I did cry (in pain) when the next band came on.

The second act was one I wasn’t too familiar with, they’re called Haste The Day. I really need to research opening acts more before going to concerts, because this is usually where things go wrong. Haste The Day are a Christian metal band. Yeah, I’ve heard of that musical genre before, but like narwhals, I find them highly unusual and refuse to accept their existence until I see one up close. Let’s just say their fans mosh for Jesus enthusiastically. I was standing up front after Halifax, taking pictures (no guard rails between the stage and the crowd, every photographers’ nightmare) and when Haste the Day started, everyone rushed forward, causing me to sharply hit my shins on the foot high stage. Actually, it wasn’t even a proper stage, I’m pretty sure they were playing on way too low to the ground risers. I got to spend their whole set pushing backwards against a crowd of whippersnappers so that I didn’t topple onto the stage and be pray-screamed to.

Then Scary Kids Scaring Kids, the act I was especially there for, took the stage. Yes, I now realize I probably should have known a band with a telling name such as theirs might not have been the best to see in concert. But darn it, some of their songs are actually quite catchy if you look past the yelly parts. And I’ve always had a bit of a crush on their keyboardist, whom I was awkwardly about five inches from almost their entire set. My knee gave out a few times thanks to being smashed by the crowd into the stage and I’d be sent forward again, my hand landing on his keyboard to make a lovely BWAMP sound. That was embarrassing, but I continued taking pictures (with both a digital and manual camera, oooh impressive). The cameras are fine, but let’s just say that the bruises on my shins and knees are still healing over two weeks later. I talked to Pouyan (the keyboardist) afterward to apologize for being a guest soloist and we had the following conversation:

Me: “Sorry about being all up in your grill the whole time.”
Pouyan: “Aw, no problem. You were kickin’ ass and taking pictures!”
Me: “Haha, thanks.”
Pouyan: “Wait, are you American?”
Me: “Yeah, from Philly.”
Pouyan: “Oh, so THAT’S why you were holding your own so well, haha. When we played there it was mass chaos.”
Me: “Usually tends to be that way. So, I hear you guys like to play Uno when on tour.”
Pouyan: “Yes indeedy.”
Me: “Your other deck must be getting worn out, so I thought I’d give you my X-Men Uno set. I don’t use it much anymore and something that cool can’t just sit on the shelf.”
Pouyan: “Oh my God! You are my hero.”

With my former prized possession in even better hands and a hug from Pouyan, I happily limped to the bus stop headed back home. Even though it was crazy and I was a tad out of place, it was nice to finally see SKSK and Halifax. As I mentioned before, bits of their songs can be screamy, but I’ll leave you with this (sorry I can't embed it in the blog like usual) to see/hear why younger me especially loved SKSK. I still find it hilarious and one of the best music videos made on a low budget. Oh, and Pouyan is the one in the passenger seat playing Game Boy.

Next post I'll finally get to the Byron Bay trip, complete with lots of photos of nature and the beach. Hip hippie hooray!

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