TP Mule and Insecurity

6:00 AM Elizabeth Seckman 51 Comments

"ZZ Top Live" by Craig ONeal
- Licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 via Commons - 
Wikipedia Photo Credit

The year was 1983 and my best friend, Kelli, and I scored (asked our moms to stop at Radio Shack) ZZ Top tickets.

When we got to the concert, we sat and watched the roadies set up. Our seats were good, but not the best.

To be front and center, you had navigate general seating on a standing room only, first come, first serve basis.

The opening act was Jimmy Barnes. We'd never heard of him (no offense, Jimmy), and I'd venture a guess that not too many people in the Ohio Valley had either, because the arena floor was pretty sparse. Kelli and I decided we could ditch our decent seats for the front row. We were small and nimble, ducking and dodging drunks and stoners until we arrived.

I swear, we could see Jimmy sweat.

We were front row.

Then Jimmy left. The lights dimmed and ZZ Top pealed off a couple of chords. The place went nuts. An entire arena of sweaty drunks pressed against us. There was a metal bar separating us from the stage, and we were being pinned against it. I could barely breathe and panic started to strike.

Suddenly, I remembered why my mother refused to buy a general admission ticket- the Who concert of 1979- where eleven people were trampled to death outside the arena.

I imagined my mother adding "I told you so" to my tombstone.

Fortunately, the squeeze didn't last long. Our nimble size didn't go unnoticed by the larger fans. We were lifted from our prime location and passed back several rows. Sure it sucked to get manhandled, but boy was it great to be able to breathe.

Fed up with the chaos, we went in search of our assigned seats. They were filled.

We never thought to go to security and demand our seats back. Honestly? We were drama'ed out. We mosied on out of  the concert where we stumbled upon a hairy ZZ Top wannabe taking a crap in the ladies' room with the stall door wide open. The dude wasn't at all embarrassed. As a matter of fact, he asked in a voice so loud it ricocheted off the concrete walls, "Hey ladies, can you fetch me some toilet paper? I had to take a sh*t."

Epic life moment, right?

So, what's the insecurity lesson in that?

Our fragile ego says if we're not up front, we're not there.

But really, everywhere is there, if you are wise enough to appreciate it.

And had I been content and stayed seated, I could have told you how awesome the concert was- instead of how I was once a teenage TP mule for a hairy guy too stoned to tell the men's room from the women's.



Thanks to Alex and this month's awesome co-hosts: L.G. Keltner, Denise Covey, Sheri Larsen, J.Q. Rose, Chemist Ken, and Michelle Wallace! The IWSG is the place to share all those pesky insecurities and fears. Join us HERE.


51 comments:

  1. lmao well at least you didn't leave the poor guy having to wipe his butt on the grass. Very true, we don't have to be up front.

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    1. That's true. I didn't. I'm very big hearted that way...though I think it was my friend who threw the roll at him. Then we both ran.

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  2. Nice one, Elizabeth. I don't feel like I need to be at the front. I just want to be in the race. :)

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    1. You're so wise, Donna. Normally, I'm content to just be where God puts me. Other times I feel like I need to DO something and it rarely turns out well.

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  3. Everywhere is there - nice!
    I try to avoid the floor unless it's assigned seating. Metal bands tend to have mosh pits and I have no desire to be caught up in one of those.

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    1. It was awful. I do NOT have the type of personality for large, rowdy crowds.

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  4. Sounds like a frightening experience to me. Not something I would have enjoyed at any time and certainly not the idiot in the female toilet.

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    1. I love concerts, but I always stick to assigned seats.

      We never told our parents that story for fear they'd stop letting us go.

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  5. Ha ha ha! I had no idea where this was going! But it's very true - everywhere is "there" if we make the most of it. :)

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    1. I'm a master of confusion. Glad you stuck with me. :)

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  6. This cracked me up. I used to be an avid concert-goer and me and my friends always tried to be in the front. I think I would have laughed pretty hard at that guy and got him some TP.

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    1. I'm not front line material. I prefer not to be shoulder to shoulder with strangers. Live and learn.

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  7. I almost spit out my coffee when it got to the guy in the bathroom. UGH. Picturing you two pressed up against the bar reminded me of every live rock video I saw growing up. Those people looked so happy even though they were hot and sweaty and fighting a crowd.


    Also, I'm trying to let all my bloggy friends know I've moved. The new blog is at http://libbyheily.com/blog/

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    1. Thanks for letting me know. I've missed you!!!

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  8. Whew! Now that's a memory. Love the thought. You nail it. Here's to living in the "here" and appreciating every second!

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    1. Sometimes I catch myself wishing for something that looks shinier and better than I have, but I try to knock myself out of it because it ruins the joy for the moment.

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  9. That's awesome! I don't know if I can handle the front row treatment. Would have to depend on the concert. Happy New Year, Elizabeth! :)

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    1. Front row is very dog eat dog. I'll stick with life in the slow lane.

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  10. That is quite the story. Being picked up out of my seat would've pissed me off, seeing that man in the bathroom would've traumatized me. lol But great lesson. :)

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    1. We were standing, so it was pretty easy to just grab us and move us back. Thinking back on it...the real mystery was how we stayed together in that crowd.

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  11. Well, that was a learning moment or two.

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  12. I'll be we've all got such a story. I can think of a few - and one is also in a woman's bathroom with a man who thought he had every right to be there.
    Great points!
    Happy New Year!

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    1. My husband said the men's restrooms can be such nasty places, he can't blame men for choosing the ladies.

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  13. You're so funny! I had no idea how you were going to turn that into an IWSG post, but I love the message to appreciate being "there" even if you're not up front. I went to 2 live concerts in my youth, but the drunk/stoned rude sea of people made them a bad experience. I don't get the "in person" thing. I'd much rather experience clean clear sound in all its beauty on CDs. Live shows sound like crap. (One of the concerts was Queen, and Freddy wasn't singing well at all - practically an octave below where he does on recordings. I was so disappointed.)

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    1. Best concert ever was Guns and Roses and Aerosmith. Guns and Roses opened for Aerosmith. Imagine the cost of that ticket today. Both sounded amazing. Oh, but then there was Billy Idol...that was awesome too. And each comes with their own idiot drunk story. What is it about idiot drunks at concerts?

      I did go see Rod Stewart and he didn't sound so good.

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  14. At least you got this cool story and I would not leave that guy hanging either. But I would hold my bag in front just in case this was some weird trap. I take books everywhere and my bag will have some heft. Happy 2016 Liz.

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    1. We didn't leave him hanging. Did a grab a roll, tossed it to him, and ran squealing from the bathroom.

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  15. Hilarious story! Although the stoned dude could probably have cared less that he was in the women's bathroom. Sounds like he didn't seem too shocked when he asked you for some TP!
    Yes, you were there! And who says where the front is anyway? Bob Uecker, an old baseball announcer (and comic)would sit at the top of the bleachers and say "if you turn this thing around I'd be in the front row!"

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    1. And just to show my age...an unknown band (ZZ Top) played at our after-prom in May, 1970, Houston, TX:)

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    2. I love that thought! Bob Uecker was so right.

      How cool is that? You can say you knew them when.

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  16. Ha! Well, that certainly sounds like a memorable experience. It makes for a great life lesson. :)

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    1. It only took me twenty-some years to find it. Not too bad :)

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  17. Great story, Elizabeth.... And some great advice. Are we ever satisfied? Geez. Sadly, the desire for better doesn't lessen with age. I think it increases. UGH...

    Happy New year! All the best!

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    1. Happy New Year to you too, Michael!

      You're so right. Maybe it's because we are more conscious of how quickly time passes and we're more impatient.

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  18. Hi Elizabeth,

    That's quite the story and a moral in there. Was the guy taking a dump, a sharp-dressed man?

    All the best for a rocking, in the right seat, type of year.

    Gary :)

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    1. He was not. More like a vagrant in need of a shave.

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  19. This sounds like the plot for an awesome story. Think about it.

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  20. Sometimes we spend so much time searching we don't enjoy what we have. Great story. Sorry about the bathroom memories.

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    1. Exactly. It's that greener grass dilemma.

      The bathroom thing shocked me for the moment, but was hilarious the next.

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  21. Ha, I knew I was getting old when I went to a Chili Pepers concert and was glad my ticket wasn't anywhere near the pit. Those were fun times, but I really like breathing.

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    1. I've never been a pit kind of gal. I was in total panic in that crowd. I'll happily keep my seat.

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  22. A good day to remember any success is a success :) Sorry, I laughed at your teen aged situation. At least you have a moment to compare others with, lol. Life is full of experiences, and learning opportunities.

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    1. Hey, if we can't laugh over it, then it wasn't worth the trauma ;)

      We do ignore so many successes because we are measuring them too harshly.

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  23. Great life lesson there. Shame you missed an awesome concert - your story took a different turn to the one I was expecting :-)

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    1. I did miss an awesome concert. We could hardly hear the band from the hallway. Never should have left our seats.

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  24. *LOL* Wow. What a story, and what a great lesson learned. :) Here's to a fantastic 2016 for all of us.

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    1. Yes, let's hope 2016 is nothing but highlights!

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  25. OMG!!! Hahahaaa...thanks for the chuckle! I do love ZZ Top.

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  26. Not everybody can be in the front row. And not all of us want to be either.

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