So great when you're at the club and some asshole pulls down his mask to vape inside, and when he farts out his performative glycerin cloud you can see exactly where his disease spread. So great.
You kick those fools out?
It is what you would euphemistically refer to as a "target-rich environment".
Oy... I had low tolerance for smokers and vapers before COVID. Now that we're in the middle of a deadly, worldwide pandemic of a respiratory virus? I makes me hate even the people who smoke outdoors, whose smoke I accidentally jog through (which I don't always notice 'til the smell hits my nose).
Yeah, I'm all in favour of making smoking/vaping illegal the same way masks and vaxxing should be a requirement.
It has been illegal to snoke/vape indoors here for many years, and has made life much better. I can't see this becoming a thing in the US ant time soon.
I wonder if someone could make a vape fluid that coats the fibers of nonwoven masks with some sort of sticky substance, increasing their effectiveness by exhaling through them. Then they'd want to keep the mask on while exhaling, presumably.
bioRxiv: because weedbros need somewhere to publish their non-peer-reviewed bullshit trying to convince us that their drug of choice is something other than just a way to kill some time!
Re: Candyman, they have just remade it:
Now with even more gentrification!
Ooph, yeah. ;-/
After much trial and error, I finally got vaccinated in May. Having last attended DIVE at the Elbo Room in Oakland in 2020, before the shelter-in-place pandemic hell scape we have been in since about a month after that show (at least my Suicide Commando tickets for March, 2020 got refunded? sigh) I thought: oh hey, maybe I will brave another concert! Yellow Claw is visiting from Amsterdam, oh darn, they're performing in Hollywood and some other place in SoCal and have zero NorCal shows booked even though they have previously performed at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in SF and The Catalyst in Santa Cruz (clearly, that would have been the venue to attend, had I even known of them back in 2015). I thought: "I've never seen them, and I could be dead tomorrow with the way things are going, so why not make an effort?"
Fast forward to: Ticketmaster's website now wants me to provide a phone number on the account I have used with merely an email address for years, and yet rejects the phone number I provided claiming it wants a Land Line? What year is this? 2021, right? FWIW, Discord has the same broken "fraud" prevention system. I thought: well darn, maybe I won't be driving 6+ hours after all, but I was sort of thinking it might be a good excuse to meet up with an old friend and give him some overdue bday gifts too. Oh right, there is that some other place in SoCal concert on the 12th, oh look, not vended by Ticketmaster (irony: Eventbrite is owned by Ticketmaster), ticket purchased! Potential upshot: Costa Mesa on a Thursday may have a smaller crowd than the Palladium in Hollywood on a Friday, which should reduce the likelihood of infection vectors for delta and lambda variants and if they are vending merch, I will get first dibs.
Spoiler: no merch was vended. ;(
So, I drive 6+ hours to Costa Mesa (which in the urban sprawl of SoCal seems indistinguishable from any other suburban nightmare I have ever been to) check into a hotel a few blocks away, take a shower to wash off the sweat of driving through so much forest fire pollution that by the time I start to get even slightly clear of it, I am in LA smog territory, so my car's recirculated air button was on more or less the entire time and my lungs still hurt anyway. Load my QR code ticket on my "smart" phone, double check that I am adhering to the mask and dress code requirements and get to Time Night Club in Costa Mesa a few minutes before doors open! Security are masked! Bar staff are masked! Lingerie clad bottle service staff are masked! This doesn't seem so bad! Maybe.
Almost every other patron who shows up to the night club throughout the night is not masked. Oh no. It gets worse though!
Despite having some riveting conversations (/sarcasm) with a tattooed Rolex wearing cryptocurrency fortune sporting Redondo Beach attendee who enjoys listening to Joyryde (yes, with two Ys) introduced me to some other people who all wanted me to drink (sorry, I am sober and more or less despise being around alcoholics, given how much of their vomit I have cleaned up after over the years, but I did buy them booze to enable their bad habits because why not, clubs need the $ right now I figure, and I sure as hell didn't fly out Yellow Claw) I endured a crowd full of I would guess, 20 to 30 somethings who were YOLO the whole g.f.d. night. Other than the aforementioned staff, I felt as if I was the only person in the club wearing a mask. Vapes, hit pipes of weed, blunts being blazed, cigarettes etc. mind you: ALL INDOORS.
I have no idea why club staff were not kicking people out left and right. My only guess is clubs are perhaps desperate for any patrons after a year of being closed and worried about bad Yelp reviews from the dbags who attend and yet clearly do not read the mask regulations posted on the website and plastered all over their walls?
I certainly know I have had uncomfortable conversations with individuals who were smoking indoors when I worked as floor staff at DNA Lounge. "Yes ma'am, I understand, I too would smoke spliffs inside night clubs in Berlin on occasion where there were exemptions to national laws banning indoor smoking. Alas, California has different regulations than those pockets in Berlin or your claims about smoking indoors in Mexico. We have a smoking section partitioned off outdoors and you can re-enter the club via the side entrance from DNA Pizza."
At least the headliner, Yellow Claw, was outstanding! So, I got my money's worth? Heck, even Ray Ray as one of the openin' deejays I enjoyed, L3X and EFX were not bad, but didn't really captivate my attention. Whoever was doing visual projections for the night was also pretty decent. I did not stick around for the deejay who came on after Yellow Claw. As I was leaving, I noticed that one of the girls who asked me to buy her a vodka Redbull earlier in the night was in tears. I asked her if she was OK, and her friend said "no", I asked her if there was anything I could do to help, and was again told "no". C'est la vie! I made an effort to be of assistance at least.
Dinner with my friend the following night in LA was excellent! So on the whole, the trip was worth it, even if the club patrons reminded me of how much I hated working floor at Bootie and why I more or less would prefer to never step foot into another night club and ideally only enjoy outdoor music festivals in forests.
Nonetheless, I did buy tickets to see Capozzi at The Midway Patio in SF on the 27th. Sure enough, it was a patio. Staff checked for vaccination cards upon entry, and there were signs up about wearing masks, but very few seemed to actually be adhering to such recommendations (regulations? I thought SF went back to mask mandates, but I am not certain). To Capozzi's credit, she even wore a mask for her performance, which was excellent! Whoever was doing visuals, also wonderful, I got a "two tone TRON" vibe for lack of a better description of the VFX. The openers, and follow up deejay from Detroit, did not seem remarkable enough to want to remember by name let alone write down here as unpaid promotion given that I would never recommend them personally based upon what I heard that night.
Unfortunately, again, the crowd at The Midway Patio was full of vapers and people smoking (cigarettes, blunts, and packed bowls from cheap looking $5 headshop glass pipes I wouldn't even want to give to a seasoned stoner who had made enemies with me). At least, the patio portion of The Midway is outside? But ungh, again, I am not upset with the performer I went to see in the slightest and that made the night worthwhile despite the fact that The Midway seems to be located in a no man's land closer to Hunter's Point than the dog patch, where DPT signage everywhere mentions towing at 10pm or 12am. I'm glad I decided to drive up early and scouted out a safe-ish looking parking spot, but it was a mile or two walk away from the venue.
I have tickets to see DJ Jazzy Jeff and the Fresh Prince coming up in September, and I see Purity Ring and some other concerts announced that I would enjoy attending in theory, but h.f.s. I cannot begin to express the levels of how upset I am with the young YOLO no mask crowd. My mom died from complications related to COVID-19 last year, and I can see the sorts of it.sh heads who facilitated the spread of the disease everywhere. Sure, I am vaccinated, but that clearly is not sufficient protection based upon the other research routinely making headlines about breakthrough cases and delta and lambda variants.
I am reminded of an episode of Last Week Tonight with John Oliver back around May when I was striking out with finding places to actually get vaccinated, and he had a clip of Alex Jones who, red in the face with talk show host rage the likes presumably only a meat eater with high blood pressure could create, described how everyone who got the vaccine would be dead within a year.
I thought to myself: "If it means I will be dead and no longer on the same plane of existence as that blowhard, then I cannot wait."
I guess I've got about eight more months or so of waiting before I find out who was correct, but even if I was wrong, I look forward to being gone rather than continue to walk the Earth with self serving jerks.
Albeit, I was raised by Christian Scientist parents, who did not get me or my older sister vaccinated. When I was in high school, my sister took a six week bicycling trip across Europe and came back having contracted the measles. I was pulled out of school right before finals, and quarantined for a few weeks. I finished my school work, passed my finals and such from home, but I was not able to put on a mask and go out and about and fraternize in public to do grocery shopping. Shelter in place is nothing like actually being quarantined and I resent people conflating the terms. Thankfully, back then, I did not contract the measles, but do I ever get the impression that most people treating a little inconvenience to their lives as if it was a dire assault upon their human rights, have no idea what it actually means to have their freedoms truly impinged upon. Also, circa 1993 when that occurred, there was no twitch, the WWW was terrible, and though some BBSes were half decent (I was a co-SysOp of more than one after all) modem speeds were 2400 baud often, and 9600 was still considered high speed, and hardly anyone had a 14.4 or USR HST line. In other words: the online escapism available via a network and a keyboard back then, even for the likes of someone such as I who was pretty dialed in, were conditions that most today would consider intolerable. In contrast, since shelter in place orders began in 2020? I have seen so many deejays and performers stream live on Twitch and such that in some ways, my artistic appreciation angle of existence is markedly improved. I don't need to drive 6+ hours to deal with terrible crowds. I don't even need to pay admission or contend with terrible hegemonic ticket vendors who have broken fraud detection systems. I have stream viewed Grandmaster Flash, Talla 2XLC, DJ Q*Bert, DJ Jazzy Jeff, DJ Z*Trip, Nick Cave and many more over the past year. In many ways, the pandemic has facilitated more art and music appreciation for me, more easily, and with fewer risks or expenses! Sure, I still prefer a live performance on a sound system which can upstage anything I can afford at whatever poor excuse counts for a home as a homeless couch surfer, but it could be a LOT worse. I've experienced a lot worse already.
I am not really sure if I will be going to many more concerts if I keep seeing the sorts of YOLO selfishness in crowds relative to what I have seen so far with two concerts in August. It is not worth it when I am surrounded by a crowd which makes me wish I were back in bed alone somewhere instead. There are better alternatives.
I have also attended a couple of film screenings since July. That friend I had dinner with on the 13th, worked as an editor on one of them. In the opening day IMAX screening, including myself, I counted 5 people in the theater. I saw a matinee of the Candyman reboot on Sunday and including myself, there were seven people in the theater. We have so many streaming media apps these days, I can't even find myself binge watching shows I want to see (admittedly, it turns out that despite collecting the toys when I was younger, Mobile Suit Gundam is incredibly boring and in months I am still maybe half way through the first series on Crunchyroll and I completely understand why it had terrible ratings, it is not a good show. It is dismal and depressing a.f.), risking my health to see a movie in a theater, seems like a bad move at the moment given all the available alternatives.
Live music though? Well, some things recordings do not do justice to, Dirk Ivens as DIVE is an exemplary example of that, I did not get him from CDs I owned, but when I saw him live, something clicked! Babyland, also, impossible to capture in a recording. Movies? Well, they are recordings by default, so there is a lot less to take away from an experience in a theater screening. Live musicians never had it easy, and right now it is definitely harder, but if there is anyone who can motivate me to go out even when I would prefer to isolate, it's probably a concert performance. I saw that Itzhak Perlman announced some 2022 concert dates, and seeing him at Sunset Center in Carmel when I was younger still stands out as one of the best live performances I have ever seen. So, I can see reasons to risk going out for more than necessities such as groceries, but if crowds could be considerate and acknowledge that we were still in a pandemic, and if venue staff would kick out the YOLO sorts, that would make the actual endeavors a lot less harrowing than my experiences thus far.
I also became "fully" vaccinated in May, at LinkedIn, in the same building they held Python meetups in the before times. So I wrote my LinkedIn URL in the patient number blank. I hope that doesn't interfere with obtaining a QR code or supporting the trivalent nasal spray vaccines covering a wider variety of spike proteins.
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