…said Oscar nominated American actress Billie Burke, and as a general rule I’m inclined to agree. However, last night brought with it an episode so belief-shakingly eye opening that this morning I woke up feeling like a wheel of three year stored Maytag Blue.
In short, some friends and I went to see angst ridden goth band Aiden. For those of you familiar with the band, this will no doubt inspire a great deal of scorn, but it’s important that you understand that we predominantly went to see the support acts, one of which we missed (Brigade), and one of which will probably exacerbate your already growing disgust (Kill Hannah). As it’s the Easter holidays, we didn’t anticipate a particularly large crowd anyway, but nothing could have prepared us for the audience demographic we were confronted with – about three hundred 14 year olds, all under five and a half feet tall, shuffling around looking awkward and adjusting their pointy fringes with their gangly adolescent arms. And a few token parents, looking equally awkward.
So there we stood, five twenty somethings with jobs and council tax bills and car payments and ISAs, wondering when the hell we’d walked through the vortex of time and space which had cruelly propelled us into the future where we were uncomfortable looking weirdos stood at the back of a gig.
But masochist that I am, this in itself just wasn’t enough. After Kill Hannah finished, another equally adoring friend and I went to say hello, where upon I initiated a conversation about the irony of Welsh weather and their song ‘Raining All the Time.’ In my head it sounded smooth and witty, but of course it came out as an unstoppable barrage of verbal diarrhoea which somehow evolved into an enquiry about the rainfall of their hometown of Chicago. Thankfully I was interrupted by an excitable girl who wanted her boobs signed, so I ashamedly slinked off, reprimanding myself for being such a cretinous loser.
And it got worse. Halfway through Aiden’s set, singer Wil Francis addressed the screaming crowd thus; ‘If I told you there was a train waiting for us, a train to hell, would you get on it with me?’ The crowd screamed louder. ‘Would you die for me?’ he bellowed. ‘Because I would die for each and every one of you!!’ And the crowd went wild. We, meanwhile, stood shaking our heads and muttering about teen suicide and then had a hearty laugh as one of us made a humorous topical reference in regards to a news item we’d seen that day. Because that’s what grown ups do. They watch the news.
It was after the band initiated a Wall of Death (where the crowd splits into two, and on the ‘command’ runs into each other as hard as possible) that we decided to leave. As we walked out, I turned to one of my friends and said that I’d been in a fair few Walls of Death in my time, and that’s when it hit me. What difference was there between that statement and the ramblings of somebodies belligerent grandmother lamenting her dancing days?
Despairing, we went on to a club where we waited in the rain for twenty minutes to pay a substantial entry fee for the privilege of paying for overpriced drinks and being squashed against people we didn’t know, and all in the name of a good time.
These kids, they don’t know they’re born.