EVERYTHING LOOKS PERFECT FROM FAR AWAY.
Everyone at Beats4LA would like to introduce you to our newest writer, Cameron Cash! Enjoy his first post/story below and be sure to show him some love!
Yesterday one of my best friends IMd me.
Her: do you have plans tonight, and do you like the Postal Service? (like, the band, not the branch of government)
Me: no plans and yes
Her: Would you like to go see the Postal Service at the Greek tonight with me?
Me: fu*k yeah!!!
Her: show starts at 7:30pm, some weirdo is opening so we won’t push too much to get there on time. And oh yeah, the tickets are free!!
I have loved The Postal Service since before I had ever even heard of Death Cab For Cutie or Rilo Kiley. Yeah, I’m one of those; just a neophyte hipster wannabe. That said, their album was incredible and on heavy rotation through out my 20s, plus I was a Greek theater virgin. One of my favorite bands at an outdoor venue I had never been to before!?! I. Was. Stoked! I had been given the chance to see them live at Coachella this year, but passed thinking surely I would get another chance to see them – and I did! Thank you, Universe.
So, I trimmed my mustache, buttoned my top button, threw on some ironic native American print sneakers, and headed to The Greek! The even bigger surprise came when I learned that not only was the show free, but we were VIP! We had access to an open bar and we sat 4 rows from the stage!
We loaded up on beers and snacks during the opening act. The people watching was incredible because I wasn’t with the masses – my brethren/the people I was used to watching – I was among the “elite,” the people who paid to be VIP; a cross between nouveau riche and people too cool for school. You couldn’t take two steps without gagging on a plaid shirt or feather earrings. One girl was ready to have a conniption because she thought the bar was cash only, until a tall bearded boy turned and informed her it was an open bar. She liked his look, so she complimented his beard, they started talking about facial hair and then art and then music. They had both been at the same music festival that year – “so weird we would be meeting at the Postal Service concert.” He got wine, she got a beer. A flurry of iPhones and exchanged info. He seemed pretty pleased with himself as he returned to his group of Brosters. She told her cousin she was going to marry him. Her cousin would later tell this story at their wedding reception.
I made all of that up just watching them.
Finally the voice of Ben Gibbard started echoing through the air and the VIP area cleared out. We made our way to our seats as well – Row D! It was the closest I had been to the stage for a show since I sat in the first row for the revival of Oklahoma on Broadway. I was soooo happy. My friend stepped away for a cigarette break and I was alone to experience my favorite Postal Service song of all time – Clark Gable.
As an actor, Gable was someone I tried to emulate from an early age. I mean, I have a mustache for Christ sakes. Furthermore, I just really love the story of the song – trying to win back love by shooting the movie version of the relationship in order to create a more perfect version of the reality. It’s just layers of beautiful layers and speaks to me as someone who wants to live a cinematic life. It felt as if it was just me and the Postal Service for that number. Little did I know that my arch nemesis was in the row directly in front of me. No, not Deidre Hall. Anne Hathaway.
After Clark Gable was over and I was basking in the afterglow I noticed a slim awkward girl, swaying back and forth just like me. She had her back to me, she wore an oversized tee-shirt, and some non-descript hipster pants I couldn’t really see. Her hair was dark and pretty short, and she seemed torn between the show and making sure no one encroached on the 3 empty seats around her. Just then 2 guys and another girl showed up. The slim girl in front of me threw herself all over one of the boys and remained slung over him in various ways through out the night. He had a beard and seemed uncomfortable – although I find when I meet some hipsters they are often intimidated by my mustache, because you know, that’s like next level shit. I’m not saying it was me, but I’ll never know if it wasn’t. Then an inebriated woman with orange cleavage tried to stumble into the empty seats that I was saving. I told her the seats were taken and she shrugged at me like she couldn’t have cared less, but then my friend returned and Tan Boobs stumbled away.
My friend got situated in her seat again and that’s when she leaned into my ear and whispered, “that’s Anne Hathaway,” and pointed to the slim girl in front of us. I watched her back or a moment and then she turned briefly and our eyes met. Indeed it was.
It’s a very humbling thing to stare into the eyes of one’s enemy. It changes you.
Seriously, Anne Hathaway is not my enemy. Clearly we’ve never met. I joke because throughout her career I have been a bit critical of her both on screen and off screen. To me it seems she’s always acting, and I have found that off putting. Talk about a “cinematic life.” Of course, after that, I started observing her; after all she’s a famous actress and how often do you get to observe one of those outside of it’s habitat that close up? Don’t get it twisted, I was still totally into the show – how could anyone not be with Jenny Lewis playing bass with her teeth – but every once in a while I would glance over and see Anne doing something preposterous, and I slowly began to realize that she wasn’t “acting all the time,” she really was like that! It’s how she functioned, being a sort of heightened version of the beautiful/awkward/nerdy/cheerleader – a total paradox of a person. Suddenly I got her. Not like my opinion of her work changed, but I got why people were so drawn to her. I felt pretty bad too for judging someone I had never met. It’s as though culture had taught me how to do it. It was a very grounding moment to realize that, and I suddenly felt more cheerful. I empathized with Anne Hatthaway’s personality and it was kind of great. What a happy Hollywood ending; with the music, and the people, and me and Anne Hathaway all waving from such great heights.
July 25th, 2013