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Gonna Walk Around And Drink Some More: Getting Fucked Up At Concerts by Iman Lababedi

I was sitting behind this guy at a Springsteen concert in Giant Stadium once and man was he stoked. Though way up in the cheap seats, he was surrounding by buddies, knocking back beers, smokin’ ganj, and a whirligig of (fairly obnoxious) energy.
His excitement was contagious and then the E Street Band came out and the guy promptly passed out for the duration of the set.
The flip side once happened to me. I got to the Peppermint Longe at 10p for a Fall set Mark E. Smith had sworn to me would be starting at 11pm. By 1230am in the morning I was passed out in one of the rooms longe sections and at 330 I was awake again, polished off a coupla of half finished drinks belonging to other people, and wandered into the main room just as the Fall emerged!!
Timing is everything with alcohol, but it is booze, not ganj, not speed or Toot or junk, that ldrugss rock and roll.
A social interaction deserves a social lubricant and till the finishing end, alcohol is an upper, exaggerating your emotions. And then it knocks you on your ass (hence cocaine: to keep you drinking).
When I write about a concert I very seldom show up drunk (though I might end up that way if -like Titus Andronicus at Bowery Ballroom, keep me aiting till midnight before they take the stage). You can’t really judge music, you can’t think about it, because your emotions are a mess and you are reacting wrongly (this is true even if you’re straight: that’s why I am always checking out the audience, particularly in NYC where they are such smart ones, to check my responses).
But as a fan, if you wanna give it up you wanna loosen it up or at least you o sometimes… do you wanna be drunk when seeing, say Natalie Merchant? Actually, do you wanna be sober? Maybe not but you don’t wanna be drunk. How about Lana Mir? If we are dealing with subtlety, the subtlety will die with alcohol…
Plus, no one needs me to draw a line between violence in alcohol. There is nothing more combustiible than two drunks in a packed out nightclub. So, yeah, booze brings with it its own list of dangers!!
To drink or not drink? In the end you have to ask yourself one question: “$3 beers?”

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