Tuesday, February 27, 2007

The Consciousness Revolution Didn't Work

I was reading on Boing Boing the other day that my generation is known as the Consciousness Revolution. It's kind of catchy, but I think at some point we may have given up the fight. The reason I say this is the experience I had last week at the Aladdin. My friend G and I went to see David Lindley on Friday night, and unexpectedly ended up walking out early.

The opening act was a random phup on stage by himself, playing an acoustic guitar. He played, and played, and talked and then played some more, and then talked. We started to feel like the victims in The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy when they were forced to listen to the Vogon poem, "Ode to a Small Lump of Green Putty I Found in My Armpit One Midsummer Morning." He sucked bigtime. When song after song, and bad stories kept coming, we got a little restless and started making fun of him. Even with a few beers in us I didn't think we were being all that loud. During one of his monologues he abruptly stopped and said "I would appreciate it if you wouldn't talk about me", indicating that there were other people equally as bored, but closer to the stage. We felt like we were being chastised like little kids who couldn't sit still in church.

The audience was mostly white-haired ponytails, hemp clothing, and comfortable shoes. I used to go to a lot of bluegrass shows with my parents when I was younger, so I assumed that everyone was in their 50's and 60's. Absolutely nothing wrong with that. What threw me off was waiting in line for beers, and these two guys behind me were talking about their ex-girlfriends, and how hard it was going out with someone in their 20's. I was kind of surprised and asked them by chance how old they were. They said 60 and 61. I said "Wow, you guys look great for your age!", kind of shocked that they could manage to snag someone so young at 60, without having major money. They said, "That's not our age, that's when we were born." Oops.

During the show no-one showed much expression, politely clapping after each song, and acting like a bunch of barely animated corpses. As I looked around it dawned on me that these people where my age. I hadn't recognized them out of their natural element blocking the aisles at New Treasons. This was the same generation of people who used to dance barefoot on broken glass, drink until they fell down, and throw empty beer cans at the singers if they sucked. When did my generation turn into a bunch of boring snobs who eat regular brownies and drink water at a show, looking and acting like Will Ferrell and Rachel Dratch's "lover" characters from SNL?

Between a lackluster performance from David, and an audience that was starting to get on my nerves, I ended up waiting out the end of the show at the bar. I wanted to let G enjoy the rest of it without me bitching. After a short time he ended up joining me. We couldn't tell if David was just getting older, or if the audience's lack of enthusiasm was hurting his performance. We felt bad because we had both seen him back when he was playing with El Rayo-X and he kicked ass!

We were a little disappointed, and I am hoping this was just an anomaly and not an indication of what everyone my age is turning into. I am looking forward to this summer full of eighties bands reuniting and holding fabulous concerts at the fairgrounds. I'm expecting to see a lot of mullets and extremely drunken behavior.

Here are the people who attended the show that night.

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