A few weeks ago, I went to the Shell in Overton Park to hear the Cowboy Junkies. I made my way up towards the front and found a small spot by the stage. I closed my eyes in remembrance of the days when beautiful young girls in flowery dresses and patchouli danced all around the stage.
But a strange dark, gaseous vibe started to entangle me. A shrill constant hum of babbling girls started up all around me — giggling, screaming, laughing out loud, gorging themselves on gourmet food.
As I opened my eyes, I began to sense that these "things" were not human at all. They were some kind of mutant cretins who had landed in the middle of Memphis and now were taking over. They are oblivious to anyone around them. They seemed incapable of taking in any thing of beauty.
The pressure of such complete implosion is what causes the dark alien psychic gas to seep out and take over the sensibilities of unknowing Memphians. Suddenly, the sound of one of the best rock bands to ever come out of Canada was awash in meaningless noise. This was their first stop on an American tour, playing in the home of rock and roll. I was embarrassed by the noise and lack of respect for these great musicians.
Am I the only one who has noticed that Memphis is secretly being taken over by an alien race of mutants? Or am I just an uptight asshole?
— Music Fan
Dear Music Fan,
Um, did you drop LSD before the show? If so, that would certainly explain the “dark alien psychic gas,” whatever that means. Unfortunately if that was the case, I’d only be able to offer you advice if I too were on acid. And I’m pretty sure my boss wouldn’t be okay with that during office hours.
For the sake of this column, I’m just going to assume that you were sober and drawing a comparison between these babbling girls and an alien race of mutants. You were trying to enjoy the Cowboy Junkies, and these annoying women were carrying on so loudly that you were distracted from the music. Right? The days of “beautiful young girls in flowery dresses and patchouli” are dead. Sorry.
I’m going to have to take the middle road on this one. I’m also highly annoyed by bubbly, obnoxious women, especially ones of the Sex in the City variety who would rather talk about shoes and men than discuss things that really matter. It sounds like these “mutant cretins” were those kind of girls.
However, I’ve also been the girl at the Levitt Shell who was more interested in her picnic and her friends than the band onstage. But when that happens, I tend to sit in the back. The diehards generally stay close to the stage, and if you’re not really at the show for the music, you shouldn’t a) take a good spot from someone who needs it or b) sit in an area where you’ll distract others when talking to your friends.
That said, there are plenty of self-absorbed folks who don’t think of others when choosing a spot at a show. The next time this happens, you might try politely asking the mutant cretin women to zip it. They probably don’t even realize they’re preventing you from hearing the music. What’s the worst that can happen? They may scoff at being told to hush and refuse to shut up. But it’s worth a try.
Or if there’s another spot available, you avoid any potential conflict and just move.
Got a problem? E-mail Bianca at firstname.lastname@example.org.