For my birthday, which was two months ago, I received concert tickets to go see Cake, which was three nights ago. When I was young and childless I used to go to concerts all the time, but it's been a while since I've seen any sort of live concert that does not involve arias or Doodlebops. Needless to say, I was excited.
Now, if you think I haven't been to a concert in a while, it has been an even longer while since I've seen a concert in Vermont. In fact, the last rock concert I'd seen in the green mountain state, prior to this one, was Phish, back when I was 18 or 19. And I'm sure I don't need to explain to you how long ago that was. So I was ready for anything, but I did have certain expectations going in.
For one thing, I expected it to be a little smaller than the concerts I have been to in the past, and boy was I right. It was all lawn seats, so people brought in beach chairs and blankets and set up camp all over the grass, and I probably could have wandered through and said hello to everybody there in the hour we sat there before the show started. I didn't get an exact count on the number of attendees, but it was not in the ten of thousands.
One thing that did surprise me was the demographic of concertgoers. Since Cake hit it big initially in 1996 (and, even though they released an album last year, they haven't gotten much radio play lately), I figured that the people in attendance would be people who were teenagers or young adults in 1996. In other words, my age plus or minus five years. In fact, the audience was extremely varied. There were many middle-aged white dudes attempting to shake it, despite being 50. Some people brought toddlers.
Now, the trick with lawn seating is getting a good spot behind somebody short. We had very low beach chairs that were barely an inch of the ground, and everyone else seemed to have full on deck chairs that towered over us, but since we would all be standing and dancing for the show, that didn't matter much. What mattered was getting behind short people. We found a couple in chairs that appeared to be about the same height, and when the girl stood up she was crazy short. Win!
But not everyone at the concert stood up. For a while, I was the only one in my area standing. Oh heck no, I thought to myself, we are not going to be sitting through this concert! Luckily, by the time everything really got going, most people were on their feet. Except for the lady behind us who was knitting. Seriously. Some lady was sitting in her beach chair knitting throughout the entire concert. In fact, people were doing all sorts of weird stuff. I guess maybe going to a concert in Vermont is just different than going to a concert in Baltimore or D.C. But the one upside: they were handing out free Ben & Jerry's to everyone!
Oh, and the actual show was good too.