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Warped@Pittsburgh '99

I.C. Light Amphitheatre
Tuesday, July 20, 1999
by coolmom@popped
photos coolmom@popped

So I get this email from MSO the evening before the Pittsburgh Vans Warped Tour informing me that there will be tickets along with a photo and a press pass waiting for me at the I.C. Light Amphitheatre Will Call window on Tuesday, July 20th. All right, sounds good to me. I mean really. I seriously doubt you'd pass that up either. Hey, say what you want about the heavy addition of metal and hiphop to this year's Warped tour line-up. The Warped Tour is still The Warped Tour so for those interested in extreme sports and a music festival, which at least includes some punk rock, the Vans Warped Tour is the only show in town.

Coolmom's Opinion : Wake up and smell the coffee. This is the Vans Warped Tour. That's right kids. The Van's Shoe Company sponsors it. It's an opportunity for cyclists and skaters to show off their skills and check out the other athletes and for music fans who live in small town USA to watch some bands perform that they might never otherwise get an opportunity to see. Real Punks know this anyway: Vans Warped tour ain't no punk club show .

Coolmom's Advice : There are far worse ways to spend a day. I can sure think of several. Can't you? So if the high-ticket cost doesn't bother you, and you want to go then (quit yer whining and) go. Just watch the bands that you want to see and check out a few you might be curious about. Watch the athletes. Hang out with your friends. Make new friends. Enjoy the day.

Hey, even with the last minute conformation and as unprepared as I was: I went, I took pictures, and I survived both the Pennywise fans frenzied rush to the stage and The Vandals' guitarist Warren's nudity without too much permanent physical or psychological damage.

Since I didn't get confirmation until the day ( ha! the evening ) before the Warped, I didn't have any interviews scheduled to do and so I really didn't need the press pass, but the photo pass came in really handy for taking close-ups of the bands I watched. With the exception of Pennywise, being allowed inside the barrier along with the security staff offered a great opportunity to take pictures safely. Besides, have you ever tried taking pictures from inside a mosh pit? Not possible. For me, anyway. I'm forty-freakin' something-years-old and all of five feet tall. So pretty much I'm either inside the barrier in front of the stage, or else I'm so far away from the stage at large shows like Warped I may as well have stayed home and listened to the bands' CDs. Which, you know, is an option I have considered.

Hey, how hard would it be to simulate the summer music festival/ concert experience? I could close off all the windows and doors, turn off the A/C, and lock the bathroom door so I can't get in. I'd then invite all the smokers I know and pack them tightly into the house after removing anything remotely resembling furniture to sit on. Of course, the music volume would be set as loud as it will go-- many decibels beyond those OSHA standards would recommend thus ensuring that everyone attending would suffer at the very least annoying short term ringing in the ears, if not life-long nerve damage and permanent loss of hearing. I'd then make sure to have someone spill as much beer as possible all over me (Why this happens to me at almost every festival that I've attended is a mystery to me. I don't drink.) and the ground after first making sure that the floors are covered with cigarette butts, booze, garbage, phlegm and...ah, well whatever other bodily fluids and debris one can conceive of. Think of all the money and driving time this would save me, not to mention the wear and tear on the car...and come to think of it...on me.

 
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