Wednesday, May 22, 2013

EDC NY 2013 Part 1/3

This past weekend, I was fortunate enough to journey on over to the decent state of New York to attend the Electric Daisy Carnival.  This event is basically a music festival with a bunch of EDM DJ's/artists and what not, in a Carnival setting.  There was a lot of bass, neon colored clothing, and kids on drugs throughout the weekend, so basically the setting made for some good story telling, and I have decided to share with all of you my EDC experience in three parts.  Now for part one.

My trip began with a car ride to Valley Cottage, New York on Thursday night to stay over my dear friend and fellow Friar Steve Sheridan's house.  Things were about as eventful as you can imagine in a town called Valley Cottage (highlights included finding a case of Yuengling Beer, some friends buying Powerball tickets, and me sleeping on a mattress that deflated way too quickly), so the real story begins on Friday as a group of 8 twenty-somethings checked into the pretty average LaGuardia Airport Hotel.  There we were, a group of young adults just waiting to have the experience of a lifetime who had killed the few hours beforehand with cheap champagne and Wheat Thins for breakfast.  This was going to be a good day.  After a short cab ride over to the Citi Field parking lot, where rumor has it people actually park to see the Mets play, the excitement and tension was mounting.  I can only compare it to walking around a new city: unknown pleasures around every corner, sites to see, people to meet, things to do, and all that jazz.  My immediate reaction 5 minutes into walking over to the entrance gate was "OW GODDAMMIT!".  EDC hadn't even started yet and I had already got my jean vest caught on a tree branch, making me turn slightly, then as I pulled away from the tree branch, I decided to smash my shin right into a concrete block that was the base for a stupid fucking light pole, resulting in blood and now this sweet looking battle wound:
I guess you could say that EDC was off to a rough start, but it didn't bog me down.  I (heroically) staggered over to the main gate and presented my credit card-type ticket, and went through an extensive pat-down and then drowned myself in the magic that was EDC.

If there was ever a time where I can refer to a parking lot as an oasis without bringing up the song 'Wonderwall', this was it.  I walked in with the same jaw-dropping manner as my 7 other comrades on this EDM voyage.  Besides the massive stages and thousands of people there already at Noon, my attention was drawn to the Ferris Wheel, Zipper ride (isn't that thing banned in like 13 states?) and giant swing-thing and tents and tents of carnival food and such.  After snapping back into reality, I walked over and got myself a 21+ bracelet so I could drink very overpriced Coors Light after being scrutinized and made fun of by the ID checker because my hair was pretty sweet back when I took my license picture at the tender age of 16.  After buying a 9$ Daddy Soda and tipping a buck because of the "Tipping is Good Karma" sign strategically placed in front of me, it was time to become one with the music.

The first DJ I remember seeing was Rudee.  Not sure if it's the same guy from that Notre Dame football movie, but he was pretty good regardless.  In all seriousness, it is probably sweet to DJ at EDC just for the sake of gaining new fans.  Anyways, after jamming out with Rudee, some asshole jumped in front of me, knocking some of my beer out of its cup and onto the scorchin' hot pavement.  This jerk never said sorry and was jumping up and down like a kangaroo.  It was at this moment when my friends Steve, Matt, Chris, Jenna, Kyle and Ricky realized that it was former Friar Legend Joe Rippolone who had surprised us.  That sly devil had told us he was coming to EDC on Saturday! Ha! He got us good.  So Joe joined the crowd, and if any of you reading this know him, you realize that this was a big addition to the group.

The Future of America
After catching up with Joe, we all started to settle in at EDC.  After taking in our surroundings, it was time to commence one of my favorite pastimes: people watching.  Dear lord.  My first thought was how sorry I felt for a lot of father's out there in the world.  Holy smokes were the girls scantily clad! It was like going to a beach and seeing girls in bikinis only it was in a parking lot so it seemed out of place but then again not really because it was an EDM festival and now I'm even confused at what I'm talking about.  A lot of people dressed up in strange hats and costumes.  I found Waldo a couple of times, but not Carmen San Diego that bitch.  This guy was wearing a Goofy hat, making it perhaps the first time that it was semi-appropriate to wear while not physically in Disney World:
Protesting MickeyMau5 perhaps?
I was wearing a jean vest (or a 'jest' as some girl I met called it) and was feeling pretty good about myself overall.  Wearing a jean vest at an event like this seemed to make me fit in a bit with the weirdness, which I guess I appreciated.  At an event like this, it's hip to dress like you won a Savers shopping spree, and people took full advantage.  I don't think the 80's had as much neon clothing as EDC did on Friday and Saturday.  It was a sight to say the very least.  Another thing that stood out in terms of people watching was the random things people would hold up.  I noticed quite a few flags and inflatable things, but I also saw those plastic flamingos that you stick on your front lawn, and one person had what looked like a tiki torch with a bunch of Beanie Babies tied to it.  Kinda cool but also kind of disturbing.  I'm all for unique things but a torch with Beanie Babies on it?  I'm here to see DJ's, not a sacrifice of toys.

I didn't get a glimpse of the guy with the BB Torch, so I'll assume it was this guy.

Another point about the crowd present at EDC was that they were all so damn friendly.  Normally, I'm a skeptic when it comes to overly nice people.  They're up to something.  I just know it.  At EDC, I'm not sure if it was all the drugs people were on or just people living that PLUR lifestyle, but everyone was so goddamn friendly it was unsettling.  Everyone was so nice! The Grinch would've hated this place!  There was hardly any pushing and shoving, which goes against everything I've ever learned from every other concert I've been to, but almost everyone was saying things like 'excuse me' and 'sorry, can I squeeze by?' like it was genuine. Kinda weird.  There was one girl who was standing next to the beer line holding up a 6 ft tall inflatable palm tree who actually laughed when I asked her if she grew that herself in a drunken stupor.  She laughed at that! That never happens to me.  I'm not that funny but she was even polite enough to laugh at that awful, drunken quip!

After checking out DJ's like Milkman, Danny Avila, Arty, 12th Planet (who was amazing by the way), and the end of La Roux's smash hit single 'Bulletproof', it hit me, and my dear friends Matt Rizzini and Paula Tran that we had no idea where everyone else was.  Using our cellular phones, we realized that for some reason there was no cell service whatsoever, making texts and phone calls pretty useless.  This could have been a problem, especially since we were trying to find 7 friends scattered about 5 stages and thousands of kids on drugs, but we went to see Nicky Romero anyways, which ended up being a shitshow.  Throughout the day, the crowds at each stage were somewhat crowded, but it wasn't until this set that things got chaotic.  A lot of bumping and grinding was going on in front of me, and one kid wearing a pink trucker hat that said "Big Booty Hoes" was particularly annoying, but it still wasn't ruining my day.  It hit me that even on a day with no cell service when I needed to find my friends, with way too much sunshine, a pretty nasty booboo on my shin and a semi-hangover going on, I was still having fun.  The day really picked up when fellow EDC-goer 'Radical' Rick Mansfield came to the rescue and spotted me, Matt and Paula in the crowd, all because he saw my stupid but also trademark 'Rage Diego' hat.  Now that the group was back together, we got some grub and headed back to the hotel a bit early, so that we could attend the after party at Pacha featuring 1/3rd of Swedish House Mafia.

Stupid, yet effective.

After leaving EDC Day 1 and going back to the hotel, we recharged our batteries, both in terms of our bodies and cellphones, and readied ourselves for the after party at Pacha...............which you shall find out more about tomorrow.

To be continued......

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