Good evening all!
For the last few years I've regaled you with tales of my mishaps at rock concerts, primarily Rick Springfield concerts. Nothing against Mr. Springfield, I believe my love for him and his music is well documented, but sometimes his fans, my Rick sisters as it were, get a little out of hand and I wind up wearing a rum and coke. This has happened several times.
So last week I decided to take Hubby to see his favorite rock star of all time, Pat Benatar. She was playing at the Wisconsin State Fair. Also playing that night, actually Ms. Benatar's opening act, was Melissa Etheridge. I was excited for an evening of rocking out, even though I'm not as familiar with the the lyrics of the ladies, I knew it it was going to be fun.
Looking back on the evening I can say this: At least no one poured a rum and coke on me.
My other concert mishaps, however, were there...in spades.
It started in the restroom. After wandering the fair grounds for a few hours with Peaches and one of her friends, we decided to hit the restrooms before the concert so we wouldn't miss one rocking minute. I got in line and waited my turn just like all good restroom users should. Even from my place in line outside the restroom I could hear the ruckus and by the time I got into the restroom I witnessed a very heated yelling match between a restroom attendant and a restroom patron.
Restroom attendants at big outdoor events like a State Fair or Summerfest have a thankless job. Seriously, has anyone thanked these people? They work in the WORST place on the grounds. It always smells, it's always humid, it's always damp, people are in there releasing all sorts of bodily fluids and if those patrons miss the bowl or the sink, it's up to the attendants to clean it up.
So I do not blame the attendant on the 11th day of the fair for being a little short tempered. And I have no idea what the yelling match was about. All I know is that there was a lot of finger wagging, a lot of "oh you better nots" and several "come on one step closers." I even asked the lady standing next to me what was going on. Just my luck, I asked an Asian lady who didn't speak a lot of English. I'm sure she explained the scene to me just fine...but I don't speak her language and it was noisy, so I missed it. I'm not sure if the patron through the attendant was blocking her way to a stall or what. All I know is that the whole time I was in there they were yelling at each other and when I left, the other patron left, but then she WENT BACK IN to finish the fight.
Oh, but that was just the opening act.
Once at the concert I settled in for a relatively calm first half. I mean, I'm really not that familiar with Melissa Etheridge's work so I figured I'd let her more enthusiastic fans get all riled up. Which they did. Especially the guy next to me.
Now, I was going to entitle this blog, "What does a Melissa
Etheridge concert and a 1939 Nazi rally have in common?" but I did not want anyone to think that I was equating Ms. Etheridge with the Nazis. Quite the opposite. (and let me say this: THAT WOMAN CAN PLAY! Holy cats! I was blown away by her guitar skills, especially with her 12 string when she and her bass player did a duet and gradually crouched down closer and closer to the ground and then they were kneeling on the ground and still playing...and then she got up...and did not groan or hold her hip? AWESOME! Because I can't do any of that!)
No, my reference to the Nazis was all because of the dude next to me. I'm sure he's a lovely guy. I'm sure he's Melissa Etheridge's biggest fan. I'm not saying he's her only male fan, but he certainly was the most enthusiastic. Unfortunately...he had this move,,,you know how guys will pump their fists to the sky when they're really worked up about music?
Yeah, that. Only not a fist, a flat, open hand. And not a pump to the sky in time...more like...a straight armed salute.
You know...like instead of singing "Come to my window" you'd sort of expect him to be saying, Sieg HEIL!
Yeah...that was one really, really unfortunate dance move. And after a while, he stopped doing that, which is good, but then he switched it out for something almost worse.
You know that hand gesture some guys do to indicate finger sex? Yeah....that was his other move.
Which is did directly facing me.
Meanwhile, Hubby was having his own issues. The last time we went to a concert at State fair was a few years ago, we saw Rick Springfield, and while I had a great time, Hubby was in front of a line of women who kept kicking his chair right into the back of his legs. This time around I got the chair kicker (more on that later) but Hubby's view of the stage was blocked by "people dancing and pretty much groping each other until the security guy told them to knock it off." Thank goodness for the big screens, which gave hubby a good view of what was happening, but then turned my attention in the direction of Porno Nazi.
The couple in front of us was very nice. In fact, during the break between Etheridge and Benatar, hubby complimented them on not being jack wagons. They laughed and said they couldn't promise anything once Benatar took the stage.
Now I'm pretty sure that couple, Porno Nazi, and we were the only ones who did NOT switch seats between the two acts because the crown for Benatar was very, very, very different than the crown for Etheridge and we didn't move, everyone else seemed to change seats/tickets with others. Most notably...
THE PEOPLE BEHIND US.
Now, during Melissa Eltheridge, I didn't even notice the people behind us. Well, except for the guy in the Hawaiian shirt who apparently was dancing in such a manner that the security guard (who spent a lot of time in our aisle) had to tell him to "STOP IT" several times. But other than that, I didn't notice anyone behind us.
All that changed about 45 seconds before the opening film for Benatar came on. If you've been to one of her recent concerts, you know she and her husband have this film sort of showing their timeline from just starting out to getting together to becoming awesome. The film takes about ten minutes. I've heard it's great. It looked nice. Unfortunately I didn't hear much because the people behind us, in changing seats with someone else, got tickets mixed up and there was very nearly a brawl because two couples were arguing about the same seats. Once again, the security guard, who I've seen enough now to probably invite him to Peaches' wedding, had to come down the aisle and hubby turned on his flashlight on his phone (because he's helpful that way) and everyone looked at the tickets.
In the end, one couple got the seats and the other couple did not.
And everyone enjoyed the concert without incident.
For the next forty minutes...pretty much half the time Benatar was on stage, the WOMAN behind me WOULD NOT SHUT UP ABOUT HOW MAD SHE WAS. She even tapped me on the shoulder and said, "are you in seat 2?" I said yes. But what I wanted to say was, "YES AND WOULD YOU SHUT UP? YOU HAVE THE SEATS. YOU WON. SHUT UP AND LET ME LISTEN BECAUSE YOU ARE LOUDER THAN A VERY LOUD ROCK CONCERT!"
But I didn't.
Nope for a good forty minutes or more during the concert this woman griped about her tickets and having to prove they were the right seats and how SHE'S JUST SO MAD.
And then the guy piped up and I had a flashback to a Rick concert.
Remember the woman who never got out? The woman who only knew "Jessie's Girl" and was so hammered she dumped her whole drink on the floor which then ran over my feet and she kept screaming for "Jessie's Girl" during a very quiet, stripped down show?
Yeah, so the guy behind us kept yelling "PLAY LOVE IS A BATTLEFIELD!"
Every time there was a break between songs, when they were telling stories about the 80's and the music, you know the cool stuff you only get at concerts, this jag weed is yelling "PLAY LOVE IS A BATTLEFIELD" and then proceeding to tell anyone around us that it's the only song he likes be her.
He was one rum and coke short of being the woman at the Rick concert.
Now here's the funny part. Because I work hard and save money and go to concerts as a special thing. This was a father's day gift to Hubby. Obviously, not everyone does. Some people just go because it's fun and no big deal to drop a couple hundred on tickets. That would be the group behind us.
As an homage to Prince's passing, they played "When Doves Cry." It was great. But the nobs behind us had this conversation:
"PLAY LOVE IS A BATTLEFIELD"
They start to play When Does Cry.
Woman: Is that Love is a Battlefield?
Me: (inwardly) THAT:S NOT EVEN HER SONG!
Some time later they DID play Love in A Battlefield. Jag weed behind us talked through the whole thing and then halfway through the song they left.
I can't even make this stuff up.
As for Porno Nazi, I think he wore himself out during Etheridge because he sat very nicely and quietly during Benatar and didn't do anything weird or gross at all. Good little Porno Nazi.
But like I said: No one poured a drink on me.
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