Going to a rock concert is an experience that varies with age. At 14, one is excited for days in advance with unlimited energy to enjoy the concert. At 23, one worries whether she will enjoy the show or has second thoughts about staying in. Yup, that’s me. I am the above mentioned grandma who avoids huge crowds and enjoys staying at home after 9 pm.
For such a person, the decision to go to a rock concert doesn’t come naturally; one second I want to go and in another I doubt if it is worth the time and energy. While “Idiots” have been one of the favorite bands I loved in my teenage years, I only know one or two songs from their new records. My 14-year-old self would start preparing outfits days before their one band show while my current self was not sure about unguaranteed pleasure. My analytical current self felt as if going to this concert was a gambling with the probability of 50% disappointment and 50% enjoyment. After being indecisive for days, I made up my mind to go at the very last minute.
Although I dragged myself to the event park, there was still a part of me that was very much unconvinced. One-and-a-half-hour late start of the concert made me even more anxious whether I had wasted a Saturday night in crowded distress. I could have been in my blanket, reading something or watching Netflix as an alternative, which sounded absolutely convincing. Anyway, the concert that was supposed to start at 6 pm only began at 7:30 with three opening acts which took another hour of loud noises that I had never heard of. Cutting the story short, Idiots, the band I wanted to listen, only came on stage at ten to nine, which was three hours behind the time they said on the tickets and ads all over the internet. I guess, my 14-year-old self wouldn’t mind waiting this long; she would probably be jumping around, chatting around and enjoying the wait, yet, my analytical current self would prefer the gig started at the time it said on the ticket, given the fact that there would be three opening acts that sang five songs each. It was just that my current self couldn’t afford unlimited energy like a decade ago.
Moving on, I was already yawning as the clock ticked nine when the band opened the gig with one of my favorite tracks from 2010. I did sing along but I had to pause and yawn a couple of times before the first song finished. Throughout the show, it was fun guessing whether you knew the next song they would play. There were four guesses: 1) You knew the song well enough that you could sing along, 2) You knew the song but you couldn’t remember the second verse because you always skipped it after the chorus, 3) You knew which album the song was in and you knew the melody but you did not know the lyrics, and 4) You were completely clueless that it was your first time hearing the song. Statistically, the band played 34 songs altogether; 40% of the songs – I knew the lyrics, 10% – I forgot some lyrics but still hummed along, 30% – I had heard of those songs on radio and, 20% – new songs that I had never heard before. Basically, I knew half of the songs they played which clearly was enjoyable as my current self sang along, head-banging and dancing as the music played.
Leaving home with full of doubts, it was a surprise that I completely enjoyed the concert. Three-hour-long rock concert allowed me to relive my head-banging teenage years when I pulled off black converse, studded everything and thick black eye-liners. While dancing to furious rhythms of rock music, montages of my 14-year-old self appeared in my mind, resurrecting my long forgotten memories in those years; wild, angry but energetic and youthful. I remembered my friends who were no longer friends, how easier my life was when the only stress was to not get low grades in class, how fun it was to be surrounded by friends regardless of the dramas we created, and how stupid of us to create such dramas before knowing how much hard times life could throw at us. Reminiscing all sorts of emotions, I found pleasure in the raging loud music, just like my 14-year-old self did.
All in all, I was glad that I dragged myself out to the concert regardless of all the second thoughts I had. I know it sounds weird that a 23-year-old had to force herself to concert of a rock band she loved a decade ago. Well, for a girl who has faced more than enough struggles in 23 years of existence, she becomes uptight and finds it hard to enjoy life. However, this concert-going experience in 2018 reminds me that I should let loose and float along the waves of life sometimes. Maybe I will try ditching my laptop and start going out more often to enjoy more life. Maybe not.