Monday, October 13, 2008

rival schools cultivates friendships

It's becoming rarer for me to want to go to a show anymore. It used to be something that I did much more frequently, but jaded cynicism, age, and just a general lack of enthusiasm over the last few years has brought me to a point where it has to be A) a band I am a superfan of, B) a band I've never seen and always wanted to, or C) the biggest social event of the year where I know I will have fun, dammit, whether I like it or not!

Rival Schools fits solidly into choices A and B. I love love love this band, and since their ONE full length album came out when I was in high school, I've never been able to see them play. When Ashton told me that they were playing in San Diego down the street in 2 days... this cemented my love for both him (for seeing it the listing) and San Diego (for hosting this momentous event).

I also love Rival Schools for the part they had to play in the meeting of my female counterpart, the lady herself, the one and only Annie Duffy, whose fate and mine became intertwined one night in Newport News. It involved a dance, a water cooler, a hemp necklace, Kid Dynamite and Rival Schools. Nuff said.

The show was, in a word, indescribable. There couldn't have been more than 60 people in a total Nanci Raygun-esque venue, and the fact that California is completely non-smoking is another total plus. AND, to prove the stars were aligned in our favor, the drink special was PBR. Obviously the gods were smiling upon us this evening. Walter is someone who definitely holds a place on my list of "people that if I had a chance to meet and hang out with would definitely try to seduce". You know how sometimes you go to a show for a band you really like, and even if you've seen them before, you sit at a small table with friends in exciting anticipation, knocking back beers faster than you mean to because you are literally salivating with excitement, and then the lights suddenly dim, and everyone rushes forward and the first note of the first song rings out? That moment is always a resonating one, and this was no exception.

What made it even better was that both Ashton and I had been scoping the crowd, coming up with desperate ploys to engage people in conversation, hoping to result in new friends. As it turns out, we didn't even have to try, because as I was getting up to grab another beer, I felt a tap on my shoulder and lo and behold, a septum-pierced, tattooed, adorable cherub of a lady inquires about Ashton's Texas is the Reason hoodie. Needless to say, we bit hook line and sinker and didn't let this golden opportunity slip by. By the end of the night we had been invited to a secret show in LA and camping this coming weekend. STOKED. For as outgoing as Ashton and I are, we are clumsy weirdos when it comes to making new friends.

The point of this is that Rival Schools has once again played a part in what might prove to be the start of a great friendship. Walter... thanks.

Oh, and the show was life-changing. Their second encore was "World Invitational", which is my absolute favorite song on United by Fate. The set was mind-blowing in itself, but the addition of this was just the proverbial cherry on top. Definitely on the list of top 10 favorite show experiences of all time.

No comments: