July 23, 1999

"Warped Tour"

The 15 year old and a friend are spending the day at something called the "Vans Warped Tour". This was a sort of compromise, as he really wanted to go to Woodstock, but I feel he'll need something to do when he's 18 or 20, and he can go to Woodstock then.

The Warped Tour is a strange (to me) combination of punk rock and extreme sports festival, now in its second summer of touring. I would never have heard of any of these bands without a teenager in the house.. the two apparently most well-known bands are Pennywise and Blink 182. Athletes listed on the website include skateboarders, inline roller skaters, BMX (bikes?) and Moto X. It's taking place close to downtown Montreal, on one of the islands that hosted Expo 67.

The main attraction for my son is the music (I use the term loosely). His band has been learning to play songs from these bands' CD's. I suppose there'll be "moshing" or "body-surfing" or whatever they call it now.. (I hope I got through to him when I told him he'd mess up his hair doing that..) and plenty of beer, pot, and things-I-don't-want-to-think-about.

Why did I let him go, then? Well he's a mature, level-headed kid, with a fairly mature friend, and it meant a lot to them. They're tall and well built.. not the kind that are often picked on. I'd rather spend a few hours being mildly uncomfortable than have him feel I didn't trust him enough to let him go, and that I put my comfort above his happiness and self-fulfillment. (Not to say I'd let him do ANYTHING he wanted.. there has to be a balance, and this time it came out in his favour.)

To be continued...

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