I blearily rolled out of bed Friday morning (Lollapalooza Day One), my to-do list a mile-and-a-half long. Turns out that moving, trying to find work, and setting up for an SuperFun Internet garage sale is a metric fuckton of work. But no fear! I made myself my famous “coffee brewed with Redbull” and hoped I didn’t have a heart attack from all the caffeine.
(spoiler alert: I didn’t)
I’d leave that fucker out just to make people who come over VERY uncomfortable.
Or this, which I’m dying to own so I can put it on my pillow every night before I go to sleep:
But, considering I need things like “toilet paper,” and “things to drink out of,” I sorta feel like that’s a pretty um, juvenile thing to do.
About 2:00 (or maybe it was 1 or 4 o’clock, I don’t fucking know), Dawnie came over to find me almost entirely dressed – save for a pair of shoes. We chatted a bit about this and that before embarking on our Journey To Day One Of Lollapalloza. She’d warned me (needlessly, or so I thought) about the heat and the importance of proper footwear as well as explaining that coffee, my lifeblood, is dehydrating, so I should stop drinking it.
I made a second pot and drank it in her honor.
I also decided that a kicky dress would be fine, paired it with some comfy, blinged out flippy-flops and off we went into the wild blue yonder.
Traffic, if you’re not aware, in Chicago blows hot ass because half of the roads are shut down due to construction, and, well, our dumbasses were driving from the ‘burbs inbound at 5PM. You may commence mocking me.
While we were stopped at a stoplight, Dawn practically begins hollering:
“Oh My GOD. That Guy is styling his beard.”
I swiveled my head around as I reached for my iPhone, “No fucking way.”
True to her word, he was, in fact, not JUST styling his beard, he was styling it with a motherfucking comb.
I snapped exactly one picture of the dude before he noticed me.
Back off, ladies. HE’S MINE.
Finally in the city, wristband FIRMLY in place and itching horribly, we were off.
This wristband took bionic hands of doom to snap on – Lollapalloza wasn’t kidding about making sure people didn’t slip off their wristbands and sell them to other people. If only they’d been so vigilant about booting the super drunk(slash)barfing people out.
Alas, I digress.
While I love music and have been to numerous festivals in my lifetime, nothing could’ve prepared me for this. Honestly – nothing.
Wall-to-wall people. People peeing on fences. Lines of porta-potties (not a one, I’m sad to report, had a great name). Food everywhere. Garbage everywhere. I stopped in the middle of the (closed) road to just gape – because holy SHITBALLS, Batman. My initial reactions were as follows:
Gape at the half-dressed people -> Notice that everyone – despite the ridiculous temperatures and 900% humidity – is fucking hammered -> Marvel at the smell of vomit -> Elbow some people who’d pushed into me -> Have sudden urge to crawl somewhere and hide, where no drunk people could excrete bodily fluids on me.
Instead I just kept walking, while cursing my choice in blingy footwear. It’s perfectly comfortable for a short walk, but we’d hauled ass from Dawn’s office to Grant Park, which meant that my feet were complaining loudly. I told them to “suck it up, cupcake” and continued on our merry way, snapping photos and photoboming other people. It really IS the small things in life.
In a lull between bands, we decided to take a walk through the “farmer’s market” which really seemed to be more about calling itself a farmer’s market than selling fresh greens or anything. Well, except for this:
Notice the decided lack of people clamoring to slurp down what appeared to be blended kelp? Wrong crowd, Wheat Grass Shots People. Perhaps they’d have done better in Oak Park.
(that was a jab that two of you – IF I’M LUCKY – understood)
Also: you couldn’t PAY me two bucks to drink that shit.
Unlike the poor Wheat Grass stand (I nearly bought a shot JUST to make the guy feel less bad about his decided lack of customers), this stand was bumping like WOAH:
Now, I have to make a confession (whispers): with the exception of fondue, I’m not really in to cheese. STOP THROWING SHIT AT YOUR MONITOR – it means MORE for YOU! I was deeply saddened by this because – generally speaking – I adore food on a stick.
Anyway, unlike the poor Wheat Grass Shot dude, the grilled cheese on a stick was bumpin’.
Now THIS is where marketing comes into play: had there been a guy IN a suit of cheese, I’d have bought some. Why? BECAUSE DUDE IN CHEESE COSTUME – WHAT’S THERE NOT TO LOVE?
And on the following end of the “farmer’s market,” we found this:
They had a chocolate bacon cream puff, and while I could be a crazy internet person and be all OMFG BACON CREAM PUFF, THIS IS BETTER THAN THE BACON-FLAVORED SALT I PUT IN MY COFFEE THIS MORNING, I’m going to tell you the truth.
I tried the bacon-flavored cream puff and…
(whispers)… It creeped me out.
I know I KNOW, I’m a failure at life AND at loving bacon.
On our way over to see Black Sabbath, we stopped so I could snap a picture of this:
While the name “chubby wieners” is awesome, no doubt, what really struck me was this the guy in this shirt. I thought the dude wearing the Camelback was wearing a shirt. I looked closer and realized that he was not, in fact, wearing a shirt, unless he was wearing a SKIN shirt, which goes to show how truly overwhelmed I was.
“Dawn,” I whispered loudly (dead sober, I should add). “That dude is wearing a skin shirt.”
She looked blankly at me.
“A SHIRT MADE OF MOTHERFUCKING SKIN,” I went on. “See?” I pointed at him.
She stared at me.
“I hope you’re joking,” she said.
“Uh….heh-heh-heh,” I replied.
“Becky,” she said as though I’d grown a second head in a manner of seconds. “THAT GUY IS NOT WEARING A SHIRT.”
“So…wait,” I wanted clarification. “That guy is not, in fact, wearing a skin shirt.” I stated.
“We’d better get you into the shade, dude,” Dawn said, dragging me away from the guy wearing a skin shirt.
“But…” I protested. “SKIN SHIRT.”
I was handily escorted into the shade, where I drank my water bottle and stared at the guy wearing a skin shirt on my phone until Dawn saw me and threatened to take it away.
Which, I can hardly blame her for.
How was YOUR weekend, Pranksters?
Shit I Found Saturdays is a new feature here at Mommy Wants Vodka, which is more fun than a basket of kittens, except that the Internet is mostly closed on Saturdays. Whatever. Who likes RULES anyway? So, let’s fuck that noise and get into cool shit we’ve found around the Internet and bring Saturday back.
It’s like bringing Sexy Back but awesomer.
Join in! We have donuts (lies)
Shit I Read:
This changes the entire way I view the world. A must-read. If you read NOTHING else this week, have it be this.
Reasoning With Vampires – for those of us who realize how grammatically incorrect Twilight is. (Tooks, I’m looking at YOU here)
Criggo – awesome collection of headlines that show precisely WHY newspapers are going the way of the (insert endangered species here).
Shit I Wrote:
Freeeeedom! It’s one of the best things I’ve written in awhile. I love being able to use my words again.
Shit I Watched:
Shit That’s Fucking Hilarious:
Shit I Saw (Shut UP, Pervo):
It’s clear that John C. Mayer is in love with me.
P.S. Maybe I’ll do this for my Christmas Card this year.
Shit Around My Blog:
I offer advertising. If you’re interested, email firstname.lastname@example.org
I make shirts - most of them are naughty.
I’m revamping my blogroll - if I’m on yours? You should be on mine. (WOW that sounded dirty.) If you’ve already added to the doc, don’t despair – I’m a little behind on this what with moving and all that.
At the moment, I’m removing the Go Ask Aunt Becky button from the site – not because I didn’t love it, but because it seems silly to try to offer advice while I’m starting over. Hoping it WILL be back soon.
Here’s where YOU get to play along for Shit I Found Saturdays, Pranksters!
What have you found, read, seen, or experienced that was RAD this week?
Leave it in the comments and I will TOTALLY try to add it (credit, of course, given)!
(Will be at Lollapalooza for a portion of the evening)
If you want a tour of Chicago, I’m not your (wo)man.
(apologies, Mr. Cohen)
Certainly I’m Chicago born and raised – born in Highland Park, lived in St. Charles for most of my life – hell, my apartment is straight off the dirty banks of the Mighty (Gross) Fox River, which I understand is not this gross everywhere. That was the beginning of the day.
A couple of days ago, my friend Dawn, who I call my boyfriend because, well, she is, said, “Hey bitch, you’re coming to Lollapalooza with me. I have an extra ticket and this can be your monthly “road trip.” It’ll be fucking awesome – Black Sabbath is playing.”
“Say no more,” I said, although my stomach was churning alarmingly with fear. “I’m in.”
Now, in my old life, I’d have said no.
Or given a wavering “maybe.”
Not because I didn’t want to do it, but because it was out of my comfort zone, which approximated about three feet in any direction around me. I’d made sure to start doing things that scared me – every teeny step I took was a minor victory. Yesterday, for example I braved the post office, which is one of those places – like the DMV – that makes me want to vomit because people always treat you as though you have an IQ of four because OMFG why did you stand in that line – IT’S THE WRONG LINE?
After signing my lease, I swung by the post office to pick up some of those “click and ship” boxes or whatever, so I can hunt down someone who is localish and send them shit to sell on eBay (which is scary as fuck). I’d planned to use the self-service kiosk and be in and out. The kiosk was down, which meant I had to talk to a real person and show what a post office moron I was. I sat with my anxiety as I waited in line and managed to do it.
One thing I’d been afraid of is no longer something that makes me weak in the knees.
Aunt Becky: 1
Post Office: 1 (The boxes I got to ship shit in were WAY too small for a “large” box)
For being a Chicago native (North SIIIIIIIIDDDDDEEE!), I’ve not spent much time doing the touristy shit around here. When I play tour guide, it’s all, “Here’s the dumpster I once threw something away in,” or “Sometimes I like cheese.” Not exactly the reception people are looking for.
I’ve never, for example, gone to the Taste Of Chicago - which we just call “The Taste” – which is this gigantic thing that always goes on during the dog days of summer (I don’t know HOW they predict the dog days of summer, but whomever does should be a weatherman). It’s one of those events that illustrates JUST how serious Chicago is about their food (answer: as seriously as they take to voting in corrupt governors).
I’ve also, oddly enough, never been to Lollapalloza, despite being an avid music lover. It’s always been too much, the crowds too big, and frankly natives know better than to try and go to festivals unless they feel like complaining bitterly about the tourists.
This time, though, I don’t care.
I’m not just going to see rad bands (although I will). It’s not about meeting a musician husband. It’s not even about being able photograph names of the port-a-potties (seriously, The Honey Bucket?).
It’s about taking a risk. Doing something different. Stepping outside the comfort zone I’d created for myself. And working on becoming free to be you and me.
Each time I do this, it gives me the confidence that I can do more. And I can.
Right now? That’s what I need.
Well, that and a cabana boy, but you can’t have it all.
(I’ll probably be tweeting a lot about Lollapalooza, so if you want to follow me, I’m shockingly @mommywantsvodka on the Twitter.)
Pranksters, how do you step outside your comfort zone? Do you try? What are some things you’re weirdly afraid of? Any advice for how to continue stepping outside this comfort zone?
Also: I love you.
PS. I love you MORE.
PPS. Don’t forget that tomorrow is another edition of “Shit I Found Saturdays,” a culmination of the awesomest shit on the web, ever. Best part? You can join in!