Earlier today I found myself thinking about all the shows I did not go to this year. Shows I told myself I should go to, shows that I would go to. But then at the moment of truth I decided nah I'll just stay home because going out is a pain in the rear.
I admit going into DC is a bit of a pain in the ass. I live outside the city but not terribly far. On a good night it takes me about 15 to 20 minutes to get downtown. Parking is a big issue. The city seems to have made it a real chore to park. I went to an Old 97s show earlier this year and got a ticket for parking in the neighborhood; I hadn't noticed that the zones had been adjusted so you couldn't park on them at all. This is a relatively recent happening. Same thing for seeing my friends in Bells and Hunters do a gig at Velvet Lounge; I parked on Georgia Avenue by the Howard University hospital and got a ticket because it was a street-cleaning time. Down around the 930 Club and DC9 and the Velvet Lounge there aren't any parking garages. Over by The Black Cat there is one garage. On H St by the rock and roll hotel there is parking in the neighborhood but it can be tough to find if you get there too late.
Metro isn't an option. First, it's kind of far from my house. By the time I drive there and park I could be damn near downtown. Second, it isn't like New York where it runs all night. By midnight it's closed, and although shows have started to get finished earlier to accommodate that I still don't like chancing it or leaving a show early.
When I lived in the city I would just take the Metro to the show and then take a cab home. That was awesome. When I saw Elliott Smith play I was living in Van Ness, so before going to the show with a bunch of friends I had them all over for dinner. Good times, man. A cab ride from downtown to my house now would cost about $50. Ack!
That part is really just lazy ass loser talk. There's nothing like seeing a band bring it on stage. The energy I get after a show is always worth the annoyance and near dread I feel about actually going. Once I get there it's awesome and fun, but like going to the gym the hardest thing is often getting off the couch.
But....another problem rears it head. I am old. And I have a job. And for said job I get up at 5:15am. I am not required to get up at 5:15am but I am one of the weirdos who likes getting one early. If I get in late I feel like I am already behind and playing catch up. So even though once I get to a show where I love it and enjoy it, I still am likely not going to get home until well after midnight. Which means I have, after getting home and showering and finally coming down off the energy of the show, maybe 3 hours of sleep. And like I said, I am old now. Not Methuselah old but old enough where only getting a couple hours a sleep is hard to recover from.
That's also a cop out. I am not that old. It isn't that difficult to find a split to park. Those shouldn't be excuses for not going out to see the bands I love. If I hadn't been a wuss I could have seen Pelican, High On Fire with Kvelertak (!!!!!), True Widow, Surfer Blood, Frontier Ruckus, Blitzen Trapper, Steven Wilson. And those are the ones off the top of my head.
So for this coming year I already have on my calendar Grant Lee-Phillips, Band Of Horses, Josh Ritter, The Men, Neil Finn. So, dear friends, if you see me blogging about a new record and saying how I plan on seeing them this coming so-and-so, do me a favor and prod me so I don't act like a big baby. Rock on!