It wasn’t until I was kicked directly in the ankle that I realised, I may not enjoy standing in a sweaty crowd dancing to a live performance as much as I used to.
At the last gig I went to, I was determined to stand for hours amongst others who had far more energy than I did after a full working day; bouncing around waiting for the main performer to come on stage. The main act was, of course, fashionably late (as they usually are) and I couldn’t help be annoyed they hadn’t stuck to the schedule. My feet ached desperately and I'd only been there for half an hour.
As I stood there, rocking from the balls of my feet to my heels(in an attempt to evenly spread the pain around), I wondered if anyone would notice if I slanted my head to one side, closed my eyes and had a nap. I was still young and fun, damn it! But tired, oh so very tired. I couldn't appreciate the 'coolness' that is arriving late, desperately wanting people to thrive on punctuality instead.
A new wave of energy hit me when the performer finally arrived on stage; it hit everyone at the exact same time. As I was pushed forward into the crowd while a surge of people behind me suddenly realised they weren't close enough(they’d had about an hour to decide this beforehand, but whatever), I suddenly had my back pressed up against another’s large gut.
"I admittedly used a random, innocent (and younger) person in front of me as a crutch and almost dragged them back to the floor while I hobbled up realising this may be what it’s like to use a walking stick."
It was oddly comforting because I knew it was someone’s big, squishy abdomen and definitely not someone’s hand; it acted as a cushion when I needed to relax my stance. It was the lumbar support I never knew I needed.
Although, the gut pressed closer – as did other people’s bodies around me – and it became more suffocating than cushioning. My sweat mingled with some body else’s sweat and I receded further and further into the crowd, while various others continued to push past me.
The performer bellowed out into the crowd: “Everyone get down to the floor!” Oh fuck, I thought. It was now time for the classic 'get down to the floor, wait for the beat to drop and then spring like a gazelle from the dirty, sweat and beer infused ground that we were all crouched on'. I don’t think the performer appreciated that my calves felt like they were on fire as I tried squatting, waiting for the beat to boom throughout the speaker, allowing me to stand upright again.
It was unfortunately not a graceful transition for me when everyone sprang back up. I admittedly used a random, innocent (and younger) person in front of me as a crutch and almost dragged them back to the floor while I hobbled up realising this may be what it’s like to use a walking stick. I had survived the throng of bodies leaping to the ceiling and was very proud of myself, even if my body ached all over.
The show ended, and I thought I couldn’t feel more pain until everyone scrambled to leave and I was kicked in the ankle at the last minute. I almost went down but somehow managed to limp back to the train station and go home thinking, I’m too old for this shit.
The opportunity for reserved seating has come up for another gig I’m attending, and I’ve hungrily taken advantage. Chairs! Back support! Standing but also being able to sit! It’s heaven in a ticket and I’ve finally accepted I’m now one of those people that’ll look over at all the young ones in the mosh pit, reminiscing on the days where the lack of punctuality and an ankle injury wouldn’t have phased me at all.
Cynthia Nobrega is a trivia enthusiast, using her annoying competitive streak and useless knowledge about random shit to yell out answers before anyone else can. She is also often called a cynic but still cries tears of joy when people find love on reality dating shows, “They (sob) found (sob) each other! (flood of tears). Lurk her @shitstagram._