Last week, Cory and I took in a Dwight Yoakam concert at the downtown performing arts theatre. Yes, I know Mr. Yoakam hasn’t been exactly a superstar lately, and I think I could name two songs he has sung. But Cory and I had to go because Dwight Yoakam is partially responsible for why we’re together today.
It was in that light-hearted, feel-good film Slingblade that Yoakam played a lovable and easygoing surrogate father. (If you haven’t seen that movie, you should know right away that the preceding sentence is a joke.) When I first met Cory, I thought he favored Billy Bob Thornton, the star of the film, and when he referenced Slingblade at the end of our first date, I knew we had something in common. On that day (and nearly every day since), he and I have repeated Yoakam’s final line in the movie: “Karl?”
Anyway, that was a side note. I’m actually here – for the first time in weeks – to talk about the concert. Cory and I have been to so many concerts that we are able to identify the cast of characters that regularly appears at these events. I’ll list them below. *I should note that Cory and I typically only see performers who haven’t had a hit in at least 30 years and are probably on heart medication, so these types of people may not be seen at all concerts.*
- The middle-aged/nearly senior adult female who is out for a night on the town and is dressed like all the young gals dress these days, with the shoulders and/or the sides cut out of her dress.
- The grizzled old man who saw the performer(s) on their 1981 tour and is wearing the holey T-shirt to prove it.
- The group of ladies making a girls’ night out of this thing and bought brand new snakeskin cowboy boots to wear that they obviously haven’t broken in yet.
- The teenage kid who likes this music and is just hoping none of his/her friends from school find out about this.
- The fortyish-year-old guy whose perceived friendship with the bass guitarist becomes more real to him with every beer.
- The couple who got these tickets free from a friend and have no idea who’s performing tonight.
- The elderly couple who are only here because they’re season ticket holders.
- The person sitting either directly in front, beside or behind you who knows every word to every song and wants to sing loudly enough that the performer can hear him/her from the stage.
- The couple or pair of friends who only clap occasionally and just want to sit and take it all in.
- The girl who just absolutely cannot hold her liquor and constantly “paints the sky,” dances provocatively, paws at her boyfriend, hugs her friend and holds up her third/fourth/fifth/ninth beer after every song.
There you have it, folks. I’ve been MIA for a few weeks with all this wedding and house stuff going on in my life, but I wanted to pop in for a quick blog post. If you know of other characters you’ve seen at concerts, tell me about them in the comments. I like to people watch even in my mind.