The superior feeling of having your shit together
Cuz you're an adult. I wrote about how to prep for the festival if your tolerance for crowds and standing is going the way of your underarm skin and it doubles as a little ode to feeling "old" at festivals.
That guy who has everything with him
Like a dad on a camping trip, only with more potent trail mix.
The GastroMagic Stage
ChefsFeed curated a spectacular culinary lineup on stage and backstage.
Tucked into the woods, away from the main-stage madness, The GastroMagic Stage always ends up being on of my favorite experiences of the weekend. This year, the musical and culinary talents were curated by ChefsFeed and they really out-did themselves. In a weekend of squatting in woods and swimming through crowds, it's always nice to have a bougie moment--it wouldn't be SF if you didn't--and this stage delivered with limited edition Prince-themed Humphrey Slocombe ice cream alongside a tribute band and even a pig roast backstage. But all that couldn't beat my absolute favorite moment:
Big Freedia's Beignet Bounce Dance Party
After three years of pining and pushing and angling, I finally made it on stage for her famous Beignet bounce brunch where her backup dancers took a break to pass out Brenda's French Soul Food Beignets to the hungry bouncing crowd. Big Freedia's set is always a big party where the lines between performer and audience become amazingly blurred.
Sometimes you wish death upon the person who cut you in line for the porta potty, but most other times you're reminded people--especially those who love San Francisco--are mostly kind. Biodegradable balloons, volunteers who pick up every piece of trash, staff who pour water into the mouths of die-hard (and possibly dangerously dehydrated) fans in the front row of LCD soundsytem. Women who watch out for other women, and the guy who said to the other guy in nature's great transgender bathroom: "Dude, put your phone away. She's just peeing"--They make the weekend.
Doing life right with his warm comfy outfit, Brenda's beignet and glass of wine at 2pm.
The staff worker who never took his eyes off the crowd but smiled mildly through LCD Soundsystem's entire set.
Occasionally, he'd kick a balloon back into the screaming masses.
This Twerking Carrot
When Third Eye Blind Did Something Good with their Crowd of White People
I went out of agreeability and nostalgia--you couldn't be a pre-teen in the 90s and NOT know and love every word to "Semi-Charmed Life." But two songs into their set I realized that I actually don't miss the white male angst that dominated music during my youth. It's not them--a trip through familiar hits reminded me that their lyrics are mostly earnest, well-meaning--although also loosely associated in my head with Zach Braff movies. More honestly: I feel weird, sad, and a little guilty when I look in every direction and don't see a person of color (not that they're not there, in small numbers or perhaps hidden behind a Pokemon landmark). But when Stephan Jenkins sang "Cop V Phone Girl," a new song that aligned "the good fight"--and everyone's participation in it--with the BLM movement, I remembered why my earliest crushes were on thoughtful, empathetic skater dudes. My fondness for Third Eye Blind will likely stay in the realm of the occasional pause on a throw-back radio station, but I really hope they remain relevant to thoughtful, empathetic white males of the future.
"All the kids are alright."
When everyone Lost their Shirts During Major Lazer
And then likely regretted it when the fog rolled back in.
This sweet performance