Sad fact: I'm 3201834 years old (okay, 37), but until this past weekend I had never attended an outdoor music festival. It's been hard for me, as an old, to see the appeal of standing in a smoke-filled space crammed with twenty year-old hipsters and the pound pound pound of bass and the screaming screeching of a band and the sweet waft of something...herbaceous hanging in the air. I don't like crowds. And I am not such a fan of the outdoors. Which is why I've kept a healthy distance from Lollapalooza and Lilith Fair and Bonnaroo and Coachella and Ozzfest. Especially Ozzfest.
This weekend, though, I joined my husband and thousands of young, energetic music fans at Austin City Limits. I didn't quite know what to expect. I knew it'd be hot. I knew there'd be crowds. I knew to bring sunscreen and flat shoes and an open mind. So I took a deep breathe and jumped right in.
|Forever 21 cropped tee; vintage lace skirt; ancient Gap sandals; Urban Outfitters sunglasses; Buffalo Exchange cowhide bag|
This was my first day at ACL outfit. Two songs in, and it quickly became obvious that I was woefully overdressed. In all fairness, I was warned by friends that ACL lacked any sort of standards, resulting in ensembles that gave new meaning to the term 'casual.' Consider the following completely random photo of a group of fellow concert goers:
This is what 99% of the female population at ACL was wearing. So for the second day, I toned things down. Way down.
|Forever 21 tanks; vintage Levis cutoffs; Gap sandals; Buffalo Exchange necklaces; TIKKR watch|
Based on my own astute observation, female attendees of ACL wore a minimum of nine of the following items:
- Fraying denim cutoff shorts (bonus points if your shorts are so short that they show a glimpse of butt cheek.)
- Lace top, or
- plaid western shirt (bonus points for vintage.)
- String or strapless bikini top.
- Friendship bracelets.
- Ray-Ban sunglasses.
- Turquoise jewelry.
- Cowboy boots (bonus points for vintage.)
- Crossbody bag (extra bonus points if made from the hide of an identifiable animal.)
- Absence of make-up.
- Bared, unshaven chest.
- Skinny jeans.
- Cutoff jorts.
- Lumberjack mustache (bonus points if paired with muttonchop sideburns.)
- Tee shirt with a mustache or beard.
- Super short, scruffy unwashed hair; or
- thick uncombed hair accompanied by a ponytail.
- Ironic political artifact.
Unisex items include:
- Clothing or accessories made from hemp.
- Camelbak portable hydration pack.
- Tattoos (bonus points for full sleeves and/or back piece.)
- Fanny pack.
- Leather cuffs.
- DSLR camera.
- Cowboy hat.
- Marijuana pipe.
All in all, I had a fantastic time at ACL. Sure, it was so hot that my eyeballs were sweating. True, it also rained some of the day on Saturday (resulting in a collective stink reminiscent of body odor, decaying compost and cigarette smoke.) And there was a noticeable population enjoying recreational drugs and cigarettes, despite the somewhat laughable smoking ban at the festival. But the music was great; the atmosphere relaxed; and the attendees exceedingly polite and friendly.
Have you been to an outdoor music festival? Ever attended ACL? Have you noticed any trends at concerts?