Image: @TheHappyTalent on Instagram
Last Wednesday, I was at the rock wall, waiting for my climbing partner, who was running late. Mindlessly, I started scrolling through my newsfeed... when I saw an ad for a Fleetwood Mac concert!
I clicked the link, even though I was pretty sure I wouldn't actually go, since I'm bad at planning things in advance. But it turns out the concert was that night! In the moments before my climbing buddy arrived, I texted a friend to see if he was game, and booked our tickets. I had time for about 45 minutes of climbing before the show!
Next thing I knew, I was in the 5th row at Fleetwood Mac, about to take a selfie during the chorus of Landslide, one of the most legendary songs of all time... when Stevie Nicks suddenly stopped singing and said, "What's happening? What happened? I lost the key!"
"Seriously," she continued, "I'm so nervous... This is what you know after 70 years. You still get this nervous when you sing a song for people that you love."
Then she motions for the guitar player, Neil Finn, to come give her the note. (That's what's happening behind Charlie's annoyingly-placed head in my video.)
I loved this moment, because I felt like there were some cool takeaways.
1. Even Stevie Nicks makes mistakes.
Which I guess I already knew, since I read Gold Dust Woman: The Biography of Stevie Nicks earlier this fall.
But still. It was wild to see it in person.
It's actually, weirdly, kind of reassuring. As I wrote in According to Psychology, There Are Four Ways to Feel Better About Yourself:
As a very average musician who performs covers and originals at open mics, I make mistakes all the time. It's awesome to see someone who is infinitely better than me make such a huge mistake, because it reminds me that mistakes are just part of the process.
(And for those of you who think you "shouldn't compare yourself to others" -- two things. One, that's literally impossible, unless you're a psychopath or a sociopath. Two, it's fine not to compare yourself to others... if you're okay with never ever improving. Social comparison is one of the best ways to improve, as long as you're doing it in a healthy and productive way.)
On that note...
2. That's live theater, folks!
Part of what's so cool about going to live shows, whether opera or community theater or standup or a concert, is that literally anything can happen. That makes it exciting.
For example, I went to see Carmen. In one scene, Don Jose was chasing Escamillo with a knife. The two were singing and fighting, jumping from car to car (yes, there were cars all over the stage)...
When Don Jose landed on one car and broke the windshield. It was loud, and glass fragments flew everywhere.
Neither actor flinched or acted like anything was wrong. Still... I kind of felt like that wasn't supposed to happen.
Photo credit: Alastair Muir
A few minutes later, the chorus came flooding back onto the stage to break up the fight -- and along with them, a few stagehands with brooms and dustpans.
Yeah. Definitely not supposed to happen.
In a production of Peter Pan that I was in a long time ago, one of the backdrops literally fell over. Peter Pan caught it as it dropped, then held it up over his head and finished the song he was singing.
When the song was over, he ad libbed, "Calm down, Norwegians -- you're tearing down the house!"
Which earned him an instant standing ovation.
As Prince Charming sings so charmingly in Into the Woods, "Anything can happen in the woods."
This is only one of, like, a thousand reasons to go see live performances instead of staying home. Others include:
Addicted to some dumb game that keeps you from living breathlessly? Delete the app.
Hooked on a TV show you don't even really like that much? Read the spoilers -- it's one of the best ways to end curiosity and break addiction, and it's how I avoided such time sinks as Sharp Objects and The Sinner. (Having only read the plot summaries, I kind of think the one was a case study of the other, as they're basically exactly the same, but different: abusive mom, sick younger sister, woman with mental illness, older man who serves as father figure. The only difference is the one protagonist is a cutter and the other has, like, trauma-induced amnesia.)
Then go love life.
3. Everything's always worth it.
I've said it so many times before. I'm saying it again.
Seeing Fleetwood Mac was incredible, and I will never forget it. I will never regret dropping a few hundred dollars on last-minute concert tickets that part of me thought really "should" be discounted, since the show was starting in less than two hours.
Even though I've written this very advice on my blog before (and I totally love my post about how much can happen in "just" 15 or 30 or 50 minutes -- which, if you recall, is as long as recess was in elementary school, and that was enough time for the whole class to line up in a single-file line, walk down the hall, pick teams, and play a whole game of kickball before returning, exhilarated, to the classroom)...
This isn't what inspired me to change my plans, even though I "didn't have anything to wear" (there was no way I'd have time to go home and change before the concert, so I wore my gym clothes with an old pair of jeans from my car):
Image: @TheHappyTalent on Instagram
This isn't what inspired me to drop the dough.
What actually tipped the scales in this split-second decision... was regret.
I'd missed my chance to see Paul Simon, because I'd seen how much the tickets cost and thought, "For that price, I could go to Hawaii!"
But that was dumb, because that's not how spending money (or time) works.
I guess I kind of thought... I dunno. I'd have another chance?
But all these famous musicians are old. They could all be dead or retired soon. I mean, whose heart doesn't skip a beat when they see one of their favorite rock stars trending on Twitter?
I mean, they're getting older, too, right?
About the Author
Eva is a content specialist with a passion for play, travel... and a little bit of girl power. Read more >
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