Alex and I saw Muse and Thirty Seconds to Mars at Red Rocks last Monday. Actually. Let’s clarify: Alex saw a concert. I saw a lot of other things happening. Like:
A quadrangle of the most emotional rednecks I’ve ever seen in my life.
And to be clear, I come from a land of rednecks. But these people were hanging on each other in such raptures I honestly thought I was witnessing some sort of spiritual experience. They managed to dangle in the balance between one-thrust-from-conceiving-a-child and about-to-get-in-an-all-out-brawl.
We started out near them but moved away because I couldn’t hear Jared Leto talking about peace and unity due to one of the women yelling “MY NAME IS BOB” over and over while deep-throating her Bud Light.
People who don’t know how concerts work (but who learned real fast like)
Listen, I dislike humans and being in close proximity with other bodies as much as the next person, but this is what we suffer in order to stand beneath the stars, surrounded by glowing rock formations and killer acoustics.
Also, it’s General Admission aka Every Man For Himself.
After walking 19,000 miles from a parking lot in Wyoming, we finally found a nice space at the end of a row, without spilling out onto the stairs. But as soon as we stood there, a Dudebro in a baseball hat tapped my shoulder.
“Guys,” he whined. “If you stand there, people will push past us.”
Now. You know I have two settings in this life: KILL THEM ALL and HUMANS ARE INVISIBLE. In this situation, I decided to go with HUMANS ARE INVISIBLE, even as Dudebro elaborated over Jared Leto screaming BURY ME BURY ME “Guys really we’ve been through this many times, it’s just ridiculous, I don’t want people bumping into her,” at which he pointed at a blond-bobbed girl with a super-sized taupe handbag on her shoulder.
Several responses came to mind
1. Then trade places with her?
2. Maybe you should google “what concerts are like”
3. This is a rock concert. Not a Josh Groban cover band.
4. I think this is an opportunity to accept—and embrace—that you are not, in fact, the center of the universe or the shining light from which all life emits.
Instead, I acted as though I didn’t speak English and mentally photoshopped him out of existence.
But one song later there was another TapTapTap on my shoulder. By this time, people were crowded all around us, spilling into the aisle.
“Guys, this is really just out of control. People are getting too close.”
At this point, I offered to take a step back and shield BlondeBob with my body. They both said “thank you” in a tone inconsistent with feelings of gratitude.
While I stood there—theoretically further out and more in the way of all the aggressive pushers past—no one bumped into me. Except for BlondeBob, who aggressively tried to edge me out by thwomping me with her massive bag. I could feel hatred radiating out of her body so I decided this was an opportunity to do that thing people talk about and just bow out of a situation before it gets worse.
We relocated back a bit, just behind The Rednecks, and things only got better from there.
Within 90 seconds, a pair of VERY ENTHUSIASTIC Muse fans took our old spot. And they clearly didn’t harbor a fear of human contact or really a fear of anything because the soul of the universe was channeling through their bodies.
They began to dance.
And I mean DANCE. It was a wonder to behold. And even as DudeBro went TapTapTap they only grew in enthusiasm. I’m telling you—this girl danced in a way that I won’t even do when I’m alone in my house. And drunk.
Eventually, DudeBro and Blonde Bob gave up and relinquished their seats, fleeing elsewhere.
A Future Olympian whose talent was discovered after he pissed on the stairs
I’m not sure if it’s because I worked at a psych ward, or because my life is a shit show, but I’m very finely tuned to the atmospheric energy around me. Which is why —while everyone else was still swaying and head banging to Kate Hudson’s ex-husband—I started looking around and tugging at Alex, saying “Something’s happening.”
I was ready to run as fast as my $22 flats would take me, expecting a bomb or a shooter or a fire. Instead, it was a pisser. And security was on to him, chasing him all the way up the stairs of Red Rocks at a speed I couldn’t achieve if I were running (or rolling) downhill at the same grade.
They eventually caught up to him about two feet from us. It was thrilling to be so close to this inspiring specimen of human athleticism. The security guard was panting and eventually another eight or ten of them showed up to restrain the pisser. But all I could think was… IDK guys. I think we need to keep this one alive and study him. Those thighs, those lungs, because clearly you’d have to be a superhuman to run up the stairs at Red Rocks.
Lots and lots and LOTS of different styles of dancing
I mean, honestly. Sometimes leaving my house isn’t so bad.
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