Monday, August 22, 2011

Part 2: Does anyone have a rusty fork I can put in my eye?

There's this really interesting new phenomenon that happens at outdoor festival type things nowadays. I guess it might not be that new. The beer garden. Deceptively named.

Beer Garden spectators at the SF Street Food Fest
"Don't the ani-mals look so sad and lonely?"

I experienced this at the last two outdoor events that I attempted, both of which included either a three mile line to the entrance and/or fighting with 20 year olds with feathers in their hair over where the line starts. And me crying.

I get it. It's a great way to try to keep the youngin's from gettin' their hands on a brewsky, and it keeps the neanderthals separated from the neo sapiens. It's a peace keeper in theory. But what about us aging neo sapiens who want to enjoy our beer and tacos like normal animals, walking down the street or sitting on the lawn at a concert, not trapped in a cage with fist-bumping frats?

If you ask me, it sounds more like a recipe for disaster. All the drunks are pinned in together in a tight little caged lump, instead of neatly dispersed amongst a crowd that comfortingly minimizes their power. It's like diluting your white wine with ice cubes.

You also have to stand in (another!) line to get your i.d. checked for a wristband. The line for this is really long, you can imagine. And then you stand in another very long line to get your beer. And then you just stand in the cage. Drinking your beer and fending off elbows, fringe and high-waisted shorts, not actually experiencing the event. The combination is kind of a deterrent. I didn't drink at either event, which is sad. I like beer.

Another note on crowds and why I shouldn't be allowed in them sometimes:

No kidding. We went to the Railroad Revival Tour a few months back at the Port of Oakland, and I swear to Pete that we walked in a line two miles long just to get to the entrance, all the while fighting off line cutters who stumbled along and just happened to stop in front of us and weasel their way in. Really?! I can see you!

After the third time it happened, I snapped. I got all passive-agressive snooty and started saying things like, "Oh, I'm sorry, we're actually in line. It starts back there," and "Oh, sorry! We're in line! Sorry!" which then progressed to crotchety and growly, "Hey! We're in line here! There's a line here, and we're in it, see?! Were you raised by wolves?!"

Also, not kidding: A group of four not-adolescents actually cut and stayed in front of us. So I snickered from behind them more than loud enough to be heard, inching my way in front of them whenever possible. My foot ahead of their's, them stumbling forward. My elbows inching out, them walking faster. Me giving my best evil eye, them ignoring me. It was an ugly dance. For two miles. And nobody else around us was alarmed, growling or attempting to stake claim on their place in line.I was the only one. I was that one.

Railroad Revival Tour @ The Port of Oakland

I should have known how big the crowd would be by how cool the tickets looked.
Isn't the Port of Oakland pretty?
Photos by my sweetums.

Sometimes the clouds are just right. 

It was a beautiful concert, though. We sat on the lawn with about 20 feet of vacant grass surrounding us because everyone else was in the beer garden. So there's that.

A little Edward Sharpe And The Magnetic Zeros for ya.

The End.


  1. Don't forget that you then have to stand in a line 18x times longer to go the bathroom after drinking the beer.


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