Oh fuck my back is killing me. Here is the epic tale, y'all!
I left the house all behatted and eyelinertastic, with special accessory: Soapy the rubber snake. I used him as a hatband. More for my benefit than for the all of three people who might notice and get it. I giggled, okay? ... ....GET THIS MOTHERFUCKING SNAKE OFF MY MOTHERFUCKING HAT.
ANYWAY. The sky was still grey so I looked for an umbrella on my way out but my house was sadly brollyless. I therefore decided to buy one on my way there. I found a little black one for fifteen bucks at central station - not, alas, little enough, because it didn't fit into my bag. I think you all know what happened next. Yes, ladies and gentlemen, I believe I have set the world record for briefest ownership of an umbrella - it got on that train with me and never left. RIP may it go to a good home ETC.
Once I got off the train it was a simple matter of playing follow-the-scene-kid until Acer Arena came into view. There I swiftly entered through the wrong door, was forced to throw away my water bottle (such a scam, make you buy things inside), went back out those doors and around the stadium, got stopped and told my bag was too big, took a slight detour via coat-check where I realised that since I wasn't taking my bag IN I could have kept my water for AFTER instead of chucking it away (SCAM SCAMMITY SCAM SCAM) but alas! Twas too late. I went straight into the General Admission Rear Standing area, confirming that I was an idiot and should have gotten pit tickets - or possibly seated ones. Visibility was not brilliant. I was however early enough to claim a spot behind a very short girl who soon moved, so I was at the barrier for most of Cobra and TAI. This meant I had something to lean on and I could sit down on the floor between sets, at least until it got more crowded. I then had the following dilemma: if I moved from my spot to go stretch my legs or sit down properly, it was highly unlikely that I'd get back there. So I stayed throughout the Aussie opening act, Chain Gang (Killer legs on that lead singer, was she even wearing pants? WHO KNOWS! Drummer girl definitely wasn't wearing a top. Although it must get pretty hot up there - if I drummed I'd do it in a bikini too), Cobra Starship and The Academy Is... before finally giving in during the pre-Panic break and going for a seat and the merch booth.
Both our reptilian friends and their partners in hilarity were awesome and indulged in some microphone swinging lulz. At one point William actually picked up the microphone stand by the base and tossed it from hand to hand for no readily apparent reason. Speaking of William, he came out during Cobra's set for Snakes On A Plane (with Sisky for the rap-verse) and - you know what, I am going to stop here and just say. Is there much hermaphrodite!William fic? Aside from that Big Bang fic where he changes gender occasionally and nobody really notices. Because for fuck's sake is that guy male or female? WHO KNOWS! The eye just constantly trips up on that figure and goes "Uh... is there seriously a dick inside those tiny, tiny jeans? Seriously? SERIOUSLY!?" Of course the rest of the body then replies "but you'd do hi- h- it anyway, right?" Whatever, it is news to nobody that William Beckett's gender classification is "hot" but it's really striking in person.
Other opening antics: Gabe was very affectionate towards Ryland and Vicky-T onstage. Ryland gave us some hot boy-on-guitar action (seriously that was some extremely rhythmic thrusting he had going there). Cobra's songs are totally better live than they are on record. William walked into the crowd right at the end of TAI's set. He also made mention of Michael Chislett's aussie heritage, of course. I felt like a complete tool doing the Fangs Up sign during Cobra's set but I did it anyway. When Siska came out with Cobra for Snakes On A Plane I giggled so hard at his stature. Flanked by Gabe and William he was like a leetle doll - then he walked off past Vicky, who is SLIGHTLY taller than him - and also SLIGHTLY FEMALE. I was also reminded how much I really like Santi - I was just not a fan of TAI's first album, but they have improved in leaps and bounds since then.
In the break before Cobra and TAI I turned around and leaned back on the barrier to try and console my loudly protesting back a little, even though this meant constant eyecontact or obvious eyecontact avoidance with the people behind me. I don't know why, but I can walk for hours without a back complaint, yet standing still for thirty minutes has the union out with picketlines and marching bands. My posture must be really really fucked or something. Anyway by the end of TAI's set I was ready to maim so I gave up my awesome barrier-side spot and wandered out to sit in an actual chair and get merch. Also I heard on a comm that William had a tendency to come out and be gawked at for a bit around that point in the evening. This was confirmed, but I didn't bother to gawk because he was completely blocked from view by fans and I was in line for merch - cost-benefit analysis was WAY unbalanced. I got a black Cobra Starship T-shirt, incidentally.
I returned with shirt in hand to find the crowd much thicker at the barrier. I eventually found a place where I could see over shoulders (edging between some guy and a girl who kept elbowing me) and eventually the girls in front of me left (in a bit of a hurry - hope they were okay) so I ended up just behind a bunch of kids about ten-twelve and therefore with the same visibility I had before - only nothing to lean on. I ended up sort of shifting in place to the music constantly even when the crowd around me were not dancing because it was just less painful.
Panic finally came on with their massive floral backdrop - the animations on the screen were pretty clever, very Yellow Submarine (I know for a fact that everybody groans at a Beatles comparison by this point, but that is what they reminded me of). snarkaddict
said I should text her about Spencer's faaace but even if our mobiles had not mysteriously failed to communicate Spencer's faaaace and most of the rest of him was completely invisible from where I was standing - all I got was the dynamics. "Yes, yes, I can definitely tell he's moving his arms. In rhythm even! How exciting!" I could also tell Jon Walker was very happy to be there, he was practically jumping up and down for the first song. At one point Brendon tried his hand at a little screaming - it was sort of hilarious. Just imagine that guy in a punk band oh god. Ryan rambles a bit onstage, heh. During Folkin Around he swapped places with Jon because of technical difficulties with a tambourine.
They played most of the new stuff - not when The Day Met The Night or From A Mountain, but the rest. Also a good deal of the first album, reminding me how much I liked it in the first place - I haven't listened to it properly in ages. Laced. With. Nitroglycerin! Hee. For an encore Brendon came out with a guitar and played Time to Dance almost-acoustic with audience participation instead of the keyboard riff, then the others came back on and they finished with Mad As Rabbits. Brendon said this was his favourite show ever - I bet he says that to all the audiences ;) and I think he was kind of amused by the indiscriminate screaming - they kept answering him by squealing at the top of their voices regardless what he was actually trying to say, lol.
When I got out I had to stand in line outside to get my bag and coat back - it was freezing! It was also raining slightly but my hat was useful and I walked briskly to the train station, whistling the "danana hey hey goodbye" theme they worked into Mad As Rabbits. By the time I got off the train it was really pouring down - but I was in luck! It turned out that, bereft of umbrellas as my house had appeared, this was partly because one was hiding in my very bag
. Slightly dodgy one, of course, but it kept the worst off for the walk to the bus stop. I cursed all the way for my unnecessary (and brief ;_;) umbrella purchase.
All in all good times but I don't ever want to go to a concert without company again - it's just not as much fun. I should have tried harder to find someone to go with. Also, friends could hold places in the crowd while I wrestled my back into submission. I'm going to be sore tomorrow, oh. I'd better go to sleep, anyway, it's early.