Heading out to a Concert, Keep This in Mind

Article excerpt

The outdoor concert season is in full swing. That means plenty of good music under the stars, and plenty of situations that only seem to happen when music is mixed with fresh air.

For some reason, the atmosphere at an amphitheater or park causes a Jekyll-and-Hyde transformation among some folks who equate the purchase of a ticket with the freedom to do anything they please. I've witnessed incomprehensibly besotted fools staggering in place. I've heard the crudest, most vulgar language come out of the mouths of babes -- and much older people who should know better.

Don't get me wrong; most fans are well behaved. But it only takes a handful of louts and fools to spoil an otherwise idyllic evening. What's needed is a list of rules, a guide to decent behavior, while watching an outdoor concert.

Voila:

At concerts featuring festival seating, don't shoulder your way to the front of the stage at the last minute and expect to be greeted warmly by fans who have staked out spots hours ahead of time. If you want a good spot, get there early.

Do not plant your lawn chair directly in front of folks who have spread out a blanket. Especially when the blanket people were there first.

Don't yell "Free Bird" at a show where Lynyrd Skynyrd is not performing.

Don't yell "Free Bird" incessantly at a Skynyrd concert. They'll get around to it.

Don't bring a baby or toddler to any concert where the decibel level rivals that of a jet airliner. With or without earplugs, most concerts are not good experiences for the very young.

Drinking? Don't drive -- that's obvious. But also, don't get so drunk that those beers you just paid a king's ransom for end up giving your neighbors a Schlitz shower.

If you're going to a concert just to get drunk, stay at home. The majority of the people in attendance want to hear the music, not watch as you vomit the bottle of Jack Daniels you consumed in the parking lot. …