Years ago (decades, really), I went to the Eric Clapton concert at the Omni in Atlanta. Some summer during the same awkward hair and clothing phase, 99X had a Summer Blastoff at Lakewood, and a bunch of us bought tickets. Milli Vanilli had top billing. It was epic. Besides a Dave Matthews concert years later, I haven’t been to any shows bigger than, say Chastain Park or small bar-sized venues.
Although I usually get stuck near the drunk girl or only kid in the arena, huge shows like that don’t have many rules. They’re big, loud and basically a free-for-all. I’m not against them; I just haven’t been to one in a while. Going to see live music is something my friends and I used to do often, but life got busy and we stopped going.
When Liz called this summer and offered tickets to a tiny show at Eddie’s Attic in Decatur, we all jumped at the chance. Kristian Bush (yes, of Sugarland, but I’m more impressed with his style of music pre-country) and friends would play the Sunday after Thanksgiving in the listening room atmosphere at Eddie’s.
Before the music starts, the manager makes an announcement reminding everyone to keep conversation to a minimum, and even if they don’t mention flash photography, it’s a given. Don’t do it. Most of you are probably all, JENNY, HOW WILL YOU BE QUIET FOR A WHOLE SHOW? I’m not saying I was. We whispered a little. We said please and thank you to our bartender. We clapped and cheered appropriately.
But this girl. This one girl. Well, I guess there were two, but one was just a bless-her-heart-super-fan. She was funny. She rocked in her chair, yelled a response to every rhetorical question, and promised to love them forever and ever. She even wore the T-shirt. You could see the pride on her face as she attempted to start a crowd clap (my biggest pet peeve) and invented new dance moves.
Back to That Girl (TG). Let’s start with the part she can’t help. She is at least six feet tall. Because one of my best friends is 5’ 11 9/10”, I’m familiar with the blessings and curses with which tall people are faced. Unfortunately, because they aren’t getting any shorter, they have to learn to either move to the back or find a seat. TG hasn’t figured it out. She and her friends came in right as the music was about to start. They stood in the middle of the room, right in front of people who’d paid for seats at the bar and had been waiting for quite some time.
She wasn’t blocking our view, but we watched about eight people try to figure out their next move. Do they say something? Offer their seat, so she can sit? It’s tricky. Someone did finally say something, and though she was nice about it, TG moved about four inches to the left and backed up a smidge. Oh well.
The lights dimmed. The crowd cheered. TG turned on her camera and her phone. She spent the better part of 10 minutes recording the show. She would’ve enjoyed it so much more in person than watching it on that tiny screen, but whatev.
So this part isn’t funny. Not at all. It’s just part of the story. All of a sudden, Mandi and I notice that the girl in front of us is slumping in her chair. Her date seems concerned. I lean over and ask if he needs me to get someone. He says YES, so I run. I come back with the manager, and Mandi is helping the girl, who is now having a full-blown (but mild-ish) seizure, to the floor. Someone called 911. She woke up before the paramedics got there, confused and sweaty, but she was okay.
In all fairness, we were in a corner of the room, so the musicians didn’t even notice the commotion. We whispered and moved furniture quickly and stealthily. But. BUT. TG was standing right next to us. She had to move over to get out of the way. She kept filming the show. For real. She wasn’t mean about it, but she honestly couldn’t be bothered by a little seizure.
Between TG, the super-fan lady, the person in the middle of the room who kept using her flash to take picture after picture, it could’ve been a really annoying experience. It wasn’t though. TG and company gave us a good laugh afterward at dinner, but the show was incredible. It reminded me that live music is good for the soul, even if there’s a TG in the venue. I hate that the girl who had the seizure missed such talented singers and songwriters and hope she is okay.
Because Kristian does the performance every year during Thanksgiving weekend, we’ve decided to make it a tradition of our own. Bless-her-heart-super-fan is welcome to attend, but I’d rather she doesn’t sit directly in front of me. I’m afraid Kristian thought I was the one trying to start the wave and shouting I LOVE YOU! TG can stay home. I get the feeling she’d rather watch the video anyway. Check her out on YouTube, y’all. Cheers!