For Christmas, we gave our 13-year old daughter tickets to a concert for her favorite band. She’s played us songs (“Can I play you this song? It is sooooo good! *insert look on my face during song that looks like a shot from The Office when a character smiles uncomfortably into the camera*)
Let’s just say that I feel too old to enjoy this kind of young boy band music.
But nevertheless, we gifted her tickets (#4) for her and her two friends and one very lucky parent chaperone (me). Please note my deep love and devotion for my husband to not even try to do rock-paper-scissors for the pleasure. Because I knew that he might die if he were exposed to that environment. He’s more introverted and has somewhat elitist views on music.
I did establish some expectations with all parties to protect my sanity. Since it would be a school/work night (!), I declared that we would get there early and leave early, like before it ended. There’s no way I’d be stuck in concert exit traffic late into the evening by leaving when everyone else did. No. Way.
So, on a recent Thursday night, I drove my daughter and her best friends through 1.5 hours of rush hour traffic to the concert venue. They were ridiculously excited, playing the band’s songs and flipping through a coffee table book of said band the entire time. By the time we got to the garage, they were downright Giddy with excitement. I have to say that seeing them united in Giddiness gave me serious feels.
We walked a couple of blocks towards the arena, realizing that there was a huge parking lot right there and that we unnecessarily parked in a remote garage. Oh well (I followed the signs!). We were almost at the arena when I ran through the exit procedures with the girls. I would leave before them, get the car, then text them to meet up, before the concert ended.
We made it to our seats, and I noted that the median age of the audience was 14 and 90% female. Parents were on their phones. At one point, one of the two opening acts gave a shout out to the parents in the audience. That’s when you know you’re old and at a concert for a much different demographic.
There was a whole lot of screaming that night. Jumping. Glee. I loved seeing my daughter and her friends enjoy the moment so much. That made bearing the screaming and jumping and loud music I didn’t care for, bearable. On the plus side, I could go get them food without feeling like I missed anything unlike most of my previous concert experiences. And the music, well, I had very low expectations and it exceeded them. (ears weren’t bleeding; I refused to stand though)
After looking at my watch for the 100th time, I decided that it was time for me to make the trek to the remote parking garage ahead of time, trying to project what time the concert might start winding down and how long it would take to get everyone home. I left them there with the concert going strong and, on the way out, took advantage of zero merch lines to buy them all concert shirts as a surprise. Lots of parents out there, sitting in chairs on their phones.
By the time I came back around with the car, it was at exactly my pre-planned pick-up with them and they were out to meet me within a couple of minutes. The concert was just wrapping up and we made a hasty get away with zero exit traffic! It was a surgical strike! On the way home, the girls basked in their happy exhaustion.
“That was the best 2 hours of my life!” said one friend.
I dropped each one off at home and presented them with the surprise shirt. They were thrilled! We hugged (more feels). And I felt very good for helping to make that experience happen for them. I might even do it again.
|It just looks like that girl has a hook for a hand. Also, that girl stood like the entire time.