Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

20,000 People Standing in a Field

Magazine article New Statesman (1996)

20,000 People Standing in a Field

Article excerpt

With the light seeping in from outside, I can just about see my breath in front of me. Head hurts, need painkillers. Now. Torch in mouth, I rummage around the tent through bags of fermented socks. So many socks. No sign of pills. I think they're socks now. Everything is socks. I drop the torch (my only non-sock possession) and sit in the dark with my head in my hands.

Then the shivering starts. I need to put on more layers, but I have only socks. I put socks on my hands. It's a start. Swampy water has seeped in from somewhere and my sleeping bag is a giant, flaccid slug. Then come the grotesque human-traffic-cone hybrids, silhouetted against the walls of my tent. They're shouting something about burgers. Sweet Jesus--they're hungry.

What kind of dystopian nightmare is this? One I paid nearly [pounds sterling]200 for, actually. The trench foot-like smell of festival season is beginning to pollute the air, so it's about time I confessed: I hate music festivals.

I went to my first one at the age of 16. And my God did I pretend to love it. I pretended so hard, in fact, that I continued to go to festivals for many years. Their organisers and sponsors have come up with a genius business model where they get young people with low self-esteem to spend hundreds of their parents' pounds on living like medieval peasants for a weekend while declaring that they're having "OMIGOD-THE-BEST-TIME-EVERRR".

But what about the music? Sure, I love hearing live bands. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.