Monday, December 29, 2008
An Ever Growing Epidemic.
We all suffer from some sort of regret... all the what ifs, the could've beens... it's the grief we experience when we didn't do something we realize too late that we SHOULD have done. I try to keep all forms of grief to a bare minimum... but every now and then something goes amiss and it happens...
I suffer from Non-Attendant Concert Remorse (NACR). The symptoms vary, but the most common are, Nausea. Depression. Lack of Sleep. Bankruptcy. Carpel Tunnel.
It's a terrible affliction, one I would only wish on those who deeply annoy me. What are the causes and symptom's to this disease?
Well... there are several common factors...
Perhaps the most common cause of Non-Attendant Concert Remorse is being in Financial Dire Straits. All too often, the best and most memorable concerts of the year seem to be reserved for the obscenely rich. It's a travesty. If you want to see the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, or Paul McCartney you will not only have to save for a few years... but may also have to sell a few organs- or at the very least reserve your first born for auction- and that's just for DECENT seats. God only knows how many bodily fluids, parts, and deblooms would have to be thrown at Ticketmaster for the best seats in the house! The newest element added to absurd concert pricing is the "Final Tour" or the (ever growing in popularity) "One Time Only Reunion Tour". Go ahead- threaten us avid fans with the idea that we may miss our ONLY chance to ever see you and your bandmates! Then- once we're good and scared- PLEASE bend us over the nearest barrel and royally fuck us in our wallet's ass!
Money money moeny money. That's the first and MAIN cause to Non-Attendant Concert Remorse.
As much as I know money is the real issue, it's not the one I am most bothered by. The most IRRITATING cause of NACR for me, is the dreaded PRESALE. What sadistic son of a bitch in the seventh circle of ticketmaster came up with this one??? Missing out on a presale is like being in grade school all over again. You're not part of the "in" crowd-you never were- who cares if you have this particular band's every import and bside? You're not a big enough fan to get THIS access code- sorry, by the time these tickets go public-only the shitty nosebleeds are left for you. Meanwhile... a fair share of those "presale" assholes show up late and barely give a flying fuck about being there in the first place- it's really just a "different" way to get drunk.
Let's say you DO manage by the grace of God to have access to the presale. Now, not only do you have to stress about money- but you have to stress about the internet catastrophically crashing the instant you click "look for tickets". The nausea- the AGONY you experience as you watch the web browser's gears grind. Then... the sheer horror you experience as after TEN MINUTES have passed the page reloads to reveal "We're sorry, your request cannot be processed" and the line, "Try looking for other tickets with different specifications". HA! You may as well throw yourself out the window now you poor bastard. You were willing to pay whatever disgusting price they charged, AND you were cool enough to get in to the presale- yet you're still denied. There's just too many other not-so sorry sons of bitches who's computer's were a few millisconds faster than yours. Don't even get me STARTED on the phones... or worse, if you were waiting in line... I can't even touch on the wallowing depression experienced when they literally slap you in the face LIVE and in person. Once upon a time it nearly caused a nervous breakdown and had me crying for days... those were dark times indeed. I don't want to talk about it.
Missing a concert because you couldn't get seats, is the most painful cause of NACR.
Another cause of NACR is lack of company. I know I know, some people can fly solo to a concert no problem- but it's NOT for the weak hearted. Let's put it in simpler terms... as a female there are certain precautions that I must take- I am not happy about this, but sadly it's a fact of life. I can not attend a concert alone for several reasons:
1. A female requires a buddy system when in a GA crowd- if it's not a crowd surfer kickin' you in the head- then it's some weasel dry humping you while simultaneously attempting to cop a feel. You need an extra set of hands to poke, scratch, punch this said bastard in the face. If you're in a seat- you need a buddy to watch your shit- in case you have to desperately pee. Having a buddy while waiting in a GA line is VERY important as well- again for this same reason. Mosh pits are a hazard as well- you need someone to watch your back.
2. After the show has ended- the trek home can be sketchy... and outright terrifying if it lands you in an industrial area of Brooklyn at 2 in the morning... even if you make it to a cab- it's better to have an extra pair of hands with a lighter and a can of mace.
3. It's boring and depressing for me OK? I don't like being unable to share a special concert moment. It may seem lame- but I don't like to go to a show unless bonding is part of the experience!
Thus far we have discussed several causes of NACR- Money. Presales. Company. But wait, there's more:
Accessibility. Some shows go BEYOND the frustrating and demeaning exclusivity of the presale and are deemed "private" events. This includes in-store performances where only the psychotic and unemployed who wait in line on a Tuesday can get in. Again, even if you DO take time off of work to wait- you STILL may be denied. Every promoter, radio station, and TV channel will have bogarted the tickets LONG BEFORE you've even gotten a crack at them. You think that someone would tell you this BEFORE you waited 15 hours in the rain... but no, they want you to suffer the most agonizing sense of failure before NACR fully kicks in.
Information. Sometimes, there's just not enough promotion. By some cruel twist of fate- your internet hasn't been functioning , your TV blew up, and all your friends are M.I.A. What ever the case may be, you miss a show- because you didn't EVEN KNOW about it until AFTERWARDS. The agony of hindsight missed concert opps. Oh god, the gut wrenching agony. In this age of instant information- this seems like an impossible cause of NACR, but don't be fooled. It can strike at any time and WILL have you screaming at yourself "IDIOT IDIOT IDIOT!" over and over again. If anything, in this age of information has made promoters and bands alike quite lazy. Now that all have access to this information by a few simple clicks- there's no need to waste advertising dollars. The problem with this attitude? We, as consumers can't consume everything all at once. Sure, we try to- but we can't. Things will inevitably slip through our greasy little fingers. We can't be on EVERY mailing list, friends with EVERY band we love on Myspace... AND check their websites for info. Lack of information. A rather retarded cause of NACR.
Let us not forget the one cause of NACR that cannot be helped... acts of GOD. No matter WHAT preventative measures you take- it seems as if by some cruel twist of fate- or some bombastic karma- you just ARE NOT meant to attend this historical moment in concert history. Sure, we treat these entertainers as IF they're Gods, but they're NOT- and the REAL GOD likes to remind us of that every now and then. Whether it be pestilence. Massive storms. Electronic mishaps. Train delays. God will punch his hand into the fabric of your meaningless little life and put a massive blockade against you and your concert. Why would he go through all this trouble to upset you? Well, because you pissed him off somehow- better give to charity.
Non-Attendant Concert Remorse. It's real and it WILL affect you time and time again if you're not careful. Do yourself a favor. Spend the money. Join every club you can. Make friends. Take care of yourself. Be informed. Wait in those lines. Don't lose all hope. and go to church.
I've missed MORE concerts than I've attended. It's one of my deepest regrets. Don't be like me... do everything you can to live concert going life to it's fullest.