This week I went to two concerts; one on Monday and one on Tuesday. My life isn’t always like this– there are plenty of weeks in which I attend zero concerts. However, many years ago, I promised myself that would never let the fact that I had to work the next day cause me to miss out on a show I really wanted to see (i.e., I’d go out on a school night). This week, there happened to be two such shows.
It’s a commitment I’m so grateful to have been able to keep, though I’ll admit it looks a little different from the vantage point of the later end of my 30s than it did in the early part of my 20s. Here are just a few of the those differences:
- Earplugs. I’ll just go ahead and put this one out there first. I resisted them for a LONG time. “No. I want to really be able to hear the music,” I’d explain as my husband offered me the extra pair he would bring along just in case. “Have you ever noticed that everyone who works here wears them?” he would ask. Finally, several years ago I grumbled that I would try it and shoved the little neon orange spongy things in my ears. Lo and behold, I could hear the music after all and rather liked not hearing the ringing in my ears for hours afterward.
- Pre-concert prep. Looks more like trying to run home and grab a healthy dinner than heading to a bar for fried snacks and beer.
- Proximity. Once in our 20’s my friend Lisa and I were packed in to the front rows at a concert, she turned to tell me something, and felt her long hair pull taut as she moved. Upon investigation, she determined that the end of her hair was stuck in the armpit of the gentleman behind her. “Excuse me… I think my hair is in your armpit,” she explained, as she tugged it back to safety. While that will forever remain one of my favorite concert stories, these days you’ll find me in the back, or off to the side. With my hair all to myself.
While I may be a safe distance from the throb of the crowd with foam in my ears- it doesn’t detract from the experience of sharing a unique moment in time with the artists on stage and the tens/hundreds/thousands of people around me. It’s magic and I will always believe. Even on a Tuesday night. Perhaps especially then.