I went to Lollapalooza a couple weekends ago. Don’t flip the channel – I’m not going to pretend I have any authority to discuss music on a deep level. I just want to talk about the good people watching. The people watching at Lolla is better than the stuff you get at the mall, the train and the bar at closing time – combined. It’s that good. As expected, I drew many unfair conclusions about people that weekend. Actually, I just confirmed preconceived notions I already had about people.
There are two types of people that go to music festivals. The hipsters who act like worldly, benevolent, deep thinkers (pfft) and the ones who internally smirk at the hipsters. What annoys me most is that hipsters are too lazy or uncreative (likely both) to come up with their own generational motif. They’re totally ripping off hippies. Okay, I get it, you voted for Obama and you’re really deep and introspective and you love the Earth and all its inhabitants (but hate everything else) – now could you please take off your dirty headband and crocheted vest? Stop trying to justify your love of pot behind a smokescreen of ideals. I could care less if you smoke pot as a meal replacement, just don’t insult my intelligence by trying to convince me it’s all part of some spiritual lifestyle or deep idealistic movement. I’m not asking you to carry a Lacoste beach bag and walk around in Tory Burch sandals. Just take the occasional shower and maybe wear clothes that haven’t been in circulation longer than The Grapes of Wrath.
I’m getting riled up over here so I’ll move along.
Friday night there was a somewhat unusual crowd for Lolla because Lady Gaga was headlining. Yes, the freaks were out in full force but the truly unusual guests were all the little people and by little people I mean kids, not midgets, so settle down before you crap your
pants skinny jeans.
It was endlessly entertaining to watch the parents cover their children’s eyes and ears every five seconds because Gaga was screaming profanities or writhing half-naked in a fountain of (hopefully fake) blood. Maybe next time they will do a little more research before taking their four-year-old to a music festival to see Lady Gaga and, scarier yet, all the hipsters in their smelly and obscene finery. The best was a couple who brought their kindergarten-aged daughter. Every time Gaga would scream “Where are all my Chicago gays?!?” or hiss “I know you all waaaaant me,” the wife would glare over at her husband, who would promptly earmuff the kid, who has probably never heard innuendo on TV or heard her dad scream obscenities during Monday Night Football.
As I mentioned we had some freak sightings (girls and guys wearing reproductions of Lady Gaga’s more outrageous outfits). Probably some people should have not been wearing thongs but hey, good for them, feeling good about their big old dimply butts. Good for them. (Bad for us.) Gaga encouraged their behavior by telling them she had created an invisible bubble where all the freaks could go and be loved and accepted. That really got them going. It got me going, too… over to check out the other headliner, Phoenix, which was not as awful as I thought it was going to be.
Most likely, the Gaga fans wearing costumes were hipsters who went in costume because a) hipsters love any excuse to wear retarded (I am three-quarters retarded so I can say that) outfits and b) they didn’t want their other hipster friends to know about their guilty mainstream pleasure.
I saw a few t-shirts that I liked because they made fun of hipsters but the ironic part was that it was usually a hipster wearing it which led me to believe that they (the hipsters) were either making fun of the people who were making fun of them (which would totally contradict all my stereotypes about their stupidity and their lack of a sense of humor) or they were totally oblivious to the fact that the shirt was making fun of them (sounds more likely).
Enough about the hipsters. Let me tell you about a specific person I observed that weekend whose memory I am working to repress; I am hoping writing about it will help me to move on.
It took place on Saturday afternoon. I witnessed something so disquieting that I started gagging. I almost puked. I’m not a milquetoast (show me some ear wax or a big eye booger and I’m interested) but this was seriously nasty so if you’re squeamish at all or reading this during your lunch break you might want to skip ahead.
So we’re watching Devo right? (Surprisingly good, by the way.) So we’re watching Devo and for some reason this group of guys is moshing. (Some reason = they are wasted and think they’re already at the crappy Green Day concert scheduled for later that night). One of the guys is barefoot and kicking up all the nasty muck. To understand the full intensity of the nastiness of what occurs you need to understand that this muck is not just your run of the mill mud. This is like soil, gravel, sewer drainage, grease runoff from the hipsters’ scalps, rainwater and port-a-potty leakage all mixed together and he’s just digging his toes in like it’s a spa treatment. At one point he grabs one of his feet for examination and his friends start screaming because the skin on the bottom of his foot is peeling off from the exfoliating benefits of the aforementioned mixture.
That part wasn’t so bad. I’m a girl, I’ve had pedicures, I’ve had the skin scraped off the bottom of my feet and, yeah, I paid for it. What happened next, however, is pretty nasty: He grinned and grabbed a slice of the skin and peeled it off his foot, then he dangled it above is mouth like it was a truffle. I wish I could say he stopped there but he went for it. Yes, he put that bad boy in his mouth and chomped it like it was gum. Everyone was screaming and gagging and this just seemed to fuel his fire because then he tried to blow a bubble with it. At that point I was wishing a whole bunch of hipsters would come and sit down and roll a joint and drink some organic blueberry juice and interrogate one another with heavy existential questions. Be careful what you wish for.