annie's adventures

Stories about things that have happened, will happen and are happening. All true.

Monday, October 18, 2004

Introduction

Hi everyone! My first time on a blog site. My name is Annie. I'm 38, happily cohabiting with my boyfriend Richard, my 9 year old daughter Vi, our lovebird Paulie, and horses Cinnamon, Bubba, King, & Reno. We live out in the sticks in Tennessee and enjoy the finer things in life, like cable tv and dial up internet.
I decided that life is too interesting to keep it to myself. So this journal will provide an outlet for me for rants and raves, bragging, whining, and musing.
I'm a songwriter from Florida, came to the area to make a living at it last year. Also to heal from some tough times I had past twenty years or so. More on that topic another time. Met this fabulous guy last July and we've been together ever since. So don't bother trying to corrupt me, I'm purrfectly content.

I wanted to tell you all about this concert we went to this weekend. I'm heavily into music, and usually my philosophy is, the harder the better. But I do have standards, so I don't get out onto the scene very often. This show was your typical rock station sponsored festival ie. Buzzfest 5 held at a pavilion type stadium. Half seats, half lawn. We chose the lawn due to the price mainly but also because it is usually good enough to be able to see the bands and hear them without having ringing ears for the next week. Sidenote: Yes, you do notice a difference once you get past 35.
The bands included some of my favorites: Velvet Revolver (former Stone Temple Pilots frontman Scott Weiland, and most of the former Guns N Roses on backup) along with Saliva (memphis band) Sevendust (longtime favorite) & Lit (alt. rockers). All of whom were incentive enough to go see. The venue was about an hour and 20 minutes away and Mapquest was kind enough to give me detailed directions and a map. Richard had some work to do that morning (he's a trim carpenter, very talented) and the show started at 11 am so I spent the morning doing various things around the house, finally jumped in the shower and got ready. We knew we'd miss the first few hours but we were ok with that. We got to the venue and followed the flag/flashlight waving parking attendants all the way to the back of the parking lot, grrrrr (I'm one of these people who pretends not to see them, only parking spaces up front) Richard ignorning my pleas to park much much closer than that. I spotted spots up front before we even turned in to the drive. He just glared at me and said "I can't do that, they're waving me on" Next time, I drive, lol. This particular day it's windy and chilly so when I dressed I put on a black turtleneck and my Sevendust baseball shirt on over that. Cool shirt I got at a Sevendust show in Orlando FL. It has the Cutty Sark ship on the front, ROCKSTAR on the back, and Sevendust in white letters on the right sleeve. I like it! Richard started with a purple tshirt with some white tigers on it........ummmm NO. He looks at me like I'm crazy so I said, "look, man, you can't go to a rock show in that. You can wear my Ozzy shirt" OK OK OK says he. I know I know, high maintenance. Told ya I don't get out much. He grabbed his leather jacket and I'm debating, should I wear mine or shouldn't I. Instead I grabbed a lined black windbreaker with the pocket in front, no zipper, no hood. This should work, I think. Leather can get hot, you know.
We didn't have our tickets yet so we got in line at will call, badabingbadaboom, no lines no waiting. Next up, we go to the turnstiles ready to head in. Well, well, body searches. Males on the right Females on the left. Meet ya on the other side says I. My turn and the woman searching me looked like a prison guard--ever seen the old British drama Prisoner Cell Block H? Unfortunately I have lingering memories of that show and she fit the profile. With the exception of a slightly nasal American Tennessee accent. She says "open your cigarette pack" and proceeds to inhale it like she was an asthmatic and it was Albuterol. Mmmm smells good, she says. MMKAY.
I was just glad that she was professional in her pawing of me. Sidenote: I've been to a lot of different venues and each has their own system of keeping drugs and alcohol from being brought in. So, being paranoid, we left any and all related items in the car. Next time, we will know better.
Note to all concertgoers--pick up a schedule from the ticketsales booth. It's free, it has the times and band names, saves a lot of confusion and is cheaper than the programs being sold there. I'm always amazed at the cost of things at a concert. We finally got to the lawn, and after scoping the area, I headed to my favorite spot, left side of the lawn, centered between two giant columns with a clear view of the entire stage, about 2/3rds of the way up. Perfect. Looking around, I noticed a large amount of teenagers. All dressed in black, mostly clad in sk8ter punk clothing and some far out hairstyles. I have lots of experience with teenagers. Our extended family includes: My oldest son, let's call him Max, is 18. Richard has a daughter Sheena, 16. I have a daughter Sunny, 15 and Richard has a son Matt, 15. None of whom lives with us. Max is still in Florida finishing his last year of school and doing great btw. Sheena & Matt live with the bitch from hell (their mother) in the same town as we do. Sunny lives with my parents in Florida, has since she was an infant (another long story). So that leaves us with Vi. All kids seem happy with their lots so things probably will remain as they are. But I digress. Richard originally invited Sheena to go with us, but she had nothing to wear, had prior plans, wanted to bring her boyfriend, the list goes on.....I was against it anyway as I believe that these types of shows are not the best influence on teenagers. Yet here I was looking at scores of them. Who are these parents that let their kids go to metal concerts without supervision??? With all the drugs I saw and underage drinking, I knew I was right to not let my kids go. We had a long discussion on the way there and I think we've reached the agreement that we'll find other ways to entertain them. Max being the exception as he's legally old enough to decide for himself. The worst part of it being that of all the kids, Vi is the one who would enjoy it the most, she's a natural born headbanger like her mom.
I also noticed that there were lots of people with blankets. Had I known we could bring one, definitely would have done so. I settled on the grass and Richard headed off to buy us each a beer. He came back with two cups I think 20 oz each which cost him 15 dollars. Good golly miss molly. Back in the day, I'd have gotten a buzz on the way with a bottle of crown or jack but those days are long gone. Unfortunately I was pretty thirsty and that beer was gone in about five minutes. I decided to hold off for a while and hope that I wouldn't start salivating for at least half an hour. We had gotten there around 2:30 or so and it was in between sets on the main stage so we just kicked back and waited for the next band to come on. When they did, I got a kick out of the name of the band: Future Leaders of The World. Gotta love it. They did this one song (forget the name, sorry) but they were rockin pretty hard and I told Richard we'll have to buy their cd, they're good. The singer says yeah baby have we got a cd for you. And Richard says, yeah, maybe we should go meet them. The singer says, come meet us after the show in the signing tent. Pretty funny, like he could hear us or something. They are worth a listen though. The next noteable band was called The Music. Some band out of England. The lead singer sounded like he was about 15 but he wailed! Adorable and high energy. I looked for them on Launch.com but could only hear them via that radio station setup. Will look more later, definitely an up and coming band.
A few more bands, a few more beers. Richard switched to the larger 24oz size beers for 9 dollars each. They seemed to last longer and were cans rather than draft so infinitely tasted better too. Watched some of the teens doing acrobatics nearby and also noted a lot of people in our age group sprinkled through the crowd mostly coupled up like us. Eventually a group of 8 came and sat near us and shared the wealth so we were happy. Richard tried several times to go out to the car for some contraband but no go. No Rentry. Bummer. TY to the generous group next to us.
Wind started picking up so on with the jackets. Started feeling sorry for the teen bimbettes wearing very little clothing to speak of. The main uniform seemed to be these huge legged pants with multiple zippers and buckles, usually black. And any kind of sparkly gauzy see through top with a spaghetti strapped tank underneath. Brrrrrrrr I say. Lots of hoodies and beanies too. First trip to the bathroom, I am stuck in the requisite line which fortunately starts inside the bathroom. Oh blessed heat, thank you God. I get behind two women who obviously know each other, it's catchup time, squealing and gossiping, they don't notice the open stall so I dart in there before they can say, huh? Once inside, I peruse for TP, success! Check the seat for drippings-clear but wipe it anyway. and spy, on the floor, some nasty ass bitch left a used tampon on the floor. OMFG that is so rude!!!!!!!! But I am not there to worry about such things, and as it's out of range (no chance of it touching any body part of mine) I proceed with my own business. On to the sink to wash my hands. Nice warm water which I linger under for longer than necessary, it feels so good. Casually look around and count how many nasty nasty bitches don't bother washing up. Jeesus people be nasty at home all you want but in public at least make an attempt. Out of fifteen there were 8 who did and 7 who didn't. Ewwwwwww. Long time before I'll shake hands with any of you nasty asses. I'm not generally a prude but that is disgusting. Probably the ones who don't bother getting out of the shower to pee. I always smile at people who wash their hands, like the encouragement will keep them from slipping up in the future. lol.
I hate to imagine the guys in the guys bathroom. (shudder) When I came out I headed over to the area where they sell the hats and tshirts and bought Richard a Saliva shirt. Awesome. He was totally surprised and pleased, I could tell.
Annieway, back to the show. Lit was great. Sevendust came out a little later and being one of my favorites, I was psyched. Richard also seemed to really enjoy it. Then they played the song Angel's son (I think that's the name) and I fell apart. The lead singer said he wrote the song for his little brother who got killed in Nashville. I had no idea. When the song came out I had recently lost my youngest child to SIDS-he was two months old. So the song had become my way to deal with that pain. I couldn't seem to cry much then, it was too much of a shock. But somehow I sensed the pain behind it and used it as a sort of touchstone to reach my own sadness and let it out. I hadn't heard it in a while so when he said it was his own touchstone to his brother, I was totally in tune with his feelings. I just started bawling like a baby. Poor Richard realized it and asked me "What's wrong baby?" In between sobs I told him what the song meant to me and that hearing the poor guy crying on stage (he barely got through it himself) was just too close to home for me. He held me through it and both the singer and I got hold of ourselves by the time the song was over. It amazes me how he can sing it at all. God bless him and his family.
They did a few more songs, heavy and loud, just the way I like it! Then came the intermission before Saliva. There were two stages and they rotated, soon as one stage quit the other would start. We just stayed at the main stage rather than try to keep up. At this point it was really getting cold so we decided to head back down to the bathrooms and get one more beer each.
We decided to try to find a spot closer to stage and found a good one left side of the pavilion along a railing where we could see all but the drummer. Saliva came out and totally kicked ass. If you've never seen these boys from Memphis, do yourself a favor and go go go. I was lucky enough to catch them during their first tour and have caught all three and bought all three of their cds. Funny thing is that I was in Florida when I found them, moved here and introduced this Tennessee native I adore to their music and now he is more obsessed with listening to them than I am. Well at least as obsessed anyway. They did not disappoint him or me, for sure. Next up was Velvet Revolver. In typical fashion they were over 45 minutes late for their set. I was really freezing by this point and was willing to skip them to get out of the cold. But having driven that far and knowing that I would regret it if we left, I just snuggled up to my guy and muttered under my breath. Something along the lines of " bastards better hurry up or they can kiss my you know what." Finally they come on stage and I'm looking at Scott Weiland whom for the record I think is a hugely talented guy and I'm thinking My God, this guy is scary looking. He was wearing a cool outfit, some sort of military leaders hat scarf jackboots leather pants etc with the big fly sunglasses but he was pale as a ghost and so so thin. It was horrifying to me. And of course I've heard the rumours but I just wanted to pray for him and give him a double quarter pounder with cheese heavy on the mayo. Slash was as always magnificent but after the three top ten songs I knew, I had had enough of freezing my posterior off and was so outa there. I reasoned that I could still hear them on the walk to the car if it mattered at all. Richard was obviously ready to go as well so we headed to the exit. Seemed like lots of other people felt the same way, as we had a line going out as well. The guy at the turnstile handed us some Metallica flyers. Eight to be exact. WTF do I need 8 of them for? My take on Metallica being, ok, they were great back in the day and have done some great work, total respect to Hetfield and Hammett, grudging respect to Lars for being a dick. I mean c'mon. I only listened to them back in the early 80s because someone had a bootleg off a bootleg off a bootleg which I copied on tape and passed on etc. etc. I bought all the old albums up until the black album. That being about the time they started their whole Napster issue thingie. Actually paid for Ride the Lightning three different times full price thank you very much. But after seeing them sue some cosmetics company for using metallica as a color, whatever dude, I decided no way am I buying anything else metallica, ever!!!!!!
I'm a songwriter and soso musician so I can kind of understand but to be the band who would never sell out and which is now the king of the corporate sponsors, I'm thinking I might go see Godsmack and if Metallica happens to be there, whatever.
I also for the record have paid over 50 dollars three different times to see the bastards so they can't say I haven't supported them either. And I don't download music for free. So that's my take on that whole issue.
We finally made it to the car and again thanks to Mapquest found the highway and headed home. Fortunately for me, the passenger seat in my Kia goes back almost prone and I was able to catch some shuteye on the way. All in all, it was fun and the music was definitely awesome. Hey 20 bands for 20 bucks. Even with the extra ten bucks service charges apiece, we got our money's worth. Too bad I'm broke again. But am looking forward to the next show, most likely Godsmack on November llth. Those guys are totally cool. Stay tuned!!!
Annie