how transgressive

Why is it that the Fillmore and Warfield are always filled with giant clouds of pot smoke, regardless of musical genre, but this doesn't happen at other venues, even sold out shows in other under-21 rooms?

Is it because with less than 1200 people, there's some minimum number of fratboy meatheads that is missing?


19 Responses:

  1. elevatordown says:

    I've bore witness to this a lot at The Fillmore and Warfield. I think it's the safety in numbers thing. People can smoke in the middle of a huge crowd and it's difficult for security to pin down who it is. Same reason I see people casually (and what they think to be discretely) drop their empty Budweiser bottles in the middle of the crowd for someone to slip and break their neck on.

  2. mc_kingfish says:

    Funny --I was at the Fillmore a couple months ago... First time at a place of that ilk in _ages_, and I had the experience of "Oh, right... Pot smoke... "

    It had been so long I'd forgotten!

  3. perligata says:

    Hmm, I've definitely seen this at GAMH, but that was at a hip hop show, so: no big surprise? (Yeah, I'm stereotyping, and what!)

    I never thought fratboys were the main culprit though -- I always thought it was those bead-wearing hippies. Or bead-wearing thugs.

    • jwz says:

      Every time I've seen the person blowing a huge cloud up in the air, it's been some backward-baseball-cap-wearing Limp Bizkit-looking fratboy motherfucker.

      • kimberley66 says:

        Yeah, that was the case last night at the Fillmore for sure. . . damn them. I hate smoke no matter what it's from. I've been around worse cases of smoke at both venues. I will never understand why people think that when there's a "no smoking area" that Pot is not included. . . you burn a substance and it creates smoke. . so you're smoking! Fucktards!!

      • daikon says:

        Heh, the fratboys are just more *showy* about it. Congrats, kid. Youve mastered a skill that hundreds of millions of people have figured out over the last several hundred years. And youre doing it with POT, you counterculture god you.

        The ones with the fewest tendencies toward rebellion are inevitably the loudest ones to trumpet their small, manufactured "risks."

  4. tjcrowley says:

    I would think it would be something to do with the history of those two places, but that would just be logical. Just insult me now and get it over with so we can end this charade of a response.

  5. falc0n2600 says:

    Every show I've been to at Great American Music Hall (mostly indie) has been filled with lots of weed. This is also true at the Greek Theatre in Berkeley, and Bimbo's when I've gone (once to see Slint) and that's it. I don't live there. But there's usually weed at the concerts I'm at.

    • cattycritic says:

      Nearly every show (ok, not the opera, not the symphony, duh) I've ever been to, ever, has had giant clouds of pot smoke. In fact I only notice when there isn't, and I can't even remember the last time that happened.

      [Edit] Correction: there wasn't pot smoke at the Dead Can Dance concert at the Greek Theatre. But I was in like the 4th row so maybe I just didn't notice.

  6. loic says:

    Perhaps it's just soaked into the carpet. Whenever you get enough people in the room it rises up.

    One of my friends who moved to SF recently had to stop going to shows at some places because the smoke screws with her breathing - and nobody seems to enforce non-smoking laws when its pot. Fucking hippies.

  7. netik says:

    Oh, I see you made it to ladytron.

  8. the reality is, and probably wont be the cast at the warfield under new ownership/management, that it was policy to not bother with people smoking pot unless there were direct customer complaints about it. This was something leftover from the days under the original BGP. I worked at both venues for years, and it was pretty much officially a non issue unless customers complained...

    At some point, we began telling people to move more into the crowd and away from the edges of the crowd and the bars, but other than that, it was okay to smoke pot at both venues. But if you lit up a cigarette, well that was a different matter, and you didnt want to do that...

    • belgand says:

      Definitely true at Slim's as well. Last year at Battles someone smoking pot in front of me wasn't hassled in the least (nor sadly was the jackass reeking of it who couldn't learn to take a hint that my elbowing him half a dozen times meant he should learn to mind his personal space), but as soon as he lit up a cigarette someone came over to him and put a stop to it.

      Interesting mix of priorities though I find both to be equally offensive.

  9. ammonoid says:

    I've only run into this at the GAMH.

    I haven't been to many shows at the Fillmore though.

    The last time I was at the Warfield it was to see Kraftwerk and I didn't notice the weed so much.

  10. fo0bar says:

    Last night I saw modest mouse at the Grand Sierra Resort nè Reno Hilton nè MGM Grand (1800 capacity in the theater), and your observation holds up.

  11. sparklydevil says:

    i despise that venue, and that's one of many reasons why.

  12. gordonzola says:

    haha. I was just saying this to someone else yesterday. I have no answers for you though.

  13. belgand says:

    I had that problem at The Decemberists at the Warfield last year. In this case though it was a group of about 5 or 6 40+ adults who really should know better sitting in front of me. I presume it must be some sort of nostalgic thing or something. Still annoying as hell.

  14. daikon says:

    The 1200 people range seems like a good enough number of people to provide "cover" for smoking pot, since its a fairly easy-to-spot set of arm positions (in most cases). The Fillmore and Warfield also have large unstructured open spaces with fairly low lighting in which a crowd can stand close enough that any employees are only going to move through the outer fringe, and not actually penetrate the crowd itself.

    But thats just a theory.