Right you are, Ken (vespa59) wrote,
Right you are, Ken


First night volunteering at The Vera Project. I did security at the door, which means that I basically just checked people's stamps, looked in their bags for alcohol, drugs, weapons, etc..., made sure nobody went in the back room that wasn't supposed to, and helped the bands figure out where they were supposed to go.

My feet fucking hurt.

The show was part of LadyFest, which I think is pretty alright. The first band rocked hard and that was alright too. Somewhere between the second and third band there was some spoken word jive, and the girl spoke pretty harshly against those of us with external genitalia, and that kinda bugged me, but I talked to her later about music and stuff (she had a necklace that had a silver 45 adapter on it) and she was pretty cool, so I forgive her. It wasn't terribly harsh, and I missed a lot of it, so I probably misinterpreted it.

After the show, I stayed for a little while and helped clean up. I realize that this isn't the traditional sort of volunteering that people do - that is, I know I'd probably be doing the world a better service if I took care of senior citizens or animals or something - but it still feels pretty good to contribute to something like this. I feel very strongly about the importance of all ages live music and it is so rare in this town that it's ridiculous. I am honored to be able to help Vera do what they do.

I guess the reason this is so important to me is that this sort of thing really helped steer my life. I spent many of my evenings between the ages of 15 and 23 or so at "alternative" shows in Phoenix. Most of them were all-ages, which I should be eternally grateful for. Instead of becoming another stupid mindless follower kid who went to party after party getting drunk and stoned and not really giving a fuck what happened to me, I went to show after show, became creatively inspired, learned how to express myself, learned how to interact with all kinds of different people, and talked to bands and heard their stories from where they were from and where they'd been. I saw people who were only a few years older than me embracing their individuality and doing what they loved to do. I felt like I could go on to do whatever I wanted and that felt pretty cool.

So.... I want kids that are now the age that I was then to be able to have these experiences too. I want them to have an alternative to whatever the standard protocol for an American teenager's life is supposed to be. I want them to be inspired and I want them to respect this art form and I want them to perpetuate it. Most of all, I want them to realize that the vomit that's force-fed to them by mainstream radio is not what they are limited to.

So yeah.. That was a bizarre sleepy rant, but I just wanted you to know that I'm glad I get to volunteer at Vera.

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