If you're in a large group of people listening to the Dave Matthews Band, the law of probability states that you and everyone within hearing distance will likely be participating in a little traditional peace-pipe action. It's just a matter of time before the percussive chimes and fluttering saxophone inspire those lighters to flicker as you warm up your favorite glass piece. When DMB comes to West Palm Beach this week, your best defense against bros and mosquitoes is definitely a little crackling Mary Jane.
Standing barefoot in the grass, coughing while the band works itself into a jazzy jam frenzy, you may end up feeling a little paranoid from the sticky crippy you procured from a guy in the parking lot. So that you know you're not alone and no one is actually a narc, here is a rundown of five types of stoners you're likely to encounter on your date with Dave.
10. The Family Unit
The Family Unit has staked out its patch of grass for the night and thrown a Mexican-style blanket to claim the spot. Two knuckleheads, no older than 8, bounce around in tiny little Dave Matthews Band tour shirts, with Velcro sandals secured to their feet. Dad's got a beer, and Mom has an empty canteen she plans to fill at the water fountain.
These are the folks your paranoia will make you inch away from once the tunes are in full effect. The last thing you want to hear is a lecture about there being kids around when you're shitfaced. But though the Family Unit looks wholesome, these aren't the types who'll turn down your doobie if it comes their way. Because what do Dave Matthews Band fans like to do? Get high. It's more likely Mama Bear'll be battling cottonmouth with that water than washing down animal crackers.
9. The Lone Wolf
There's always that one guy bopping around who seems to know everyone, but no one really knows who he came with. He's never lost or alone, and oddly enough, he's only on the lawn because he's just "making friends, man," even though he has a pavilion ticket! You can see his bun or ponytail excitedly hustling though the crowd, moving from pod to pod of lawn stoners.
The Lone Wolf is the highest dude within a six-mile radius. He's more of a sprite or mythical creature than anything else, and he leaves as quickly as he arrived. He knows every word to every song, knows all the JamBase stats on those songs, and will tell you everything about his very first DMB show. This is the guy you'll probably also want to consult about boomers, should a demand arise. He probably doesn't have them, but because he has literally exchanged words with everyone in the venue, he probably knows who does.
8. The Awkward Couple
It looks like their first date. The Awkward Couple can either be in their teens or mid-20s. They're easy to spot because they aren't dressed like typical DMB hippies. One or both have styled hair. They stand really close to each other during songs like "Satellite," and though they know all the words, they're too self-conscious to sing them louder than a mumble.
This sort of nervousness deserves the medical-grade stuff. And while neither of them is discussing the idea of getting high, they are both thinking about it. They aren't going to talk about it unless someone creates the opportunity. If you see the Awkward Couple, donate a pinch of your stash to their cause. Then pat yourself on the back. Just don't ask your probation officer if it counts as community service.
7. The Paranoid Peeker
Is that guy looking at you? You can't be sure, so you ask your friend, "Hey, is that guy looking at us?" His back is completely facing the stage, and after a moment of scouting his options, he locks eyes on your group.
Fun-loving hippies that you are, you and your pals are chiefing down and dancing in the moonlight. But the Paranoid Peeker stands between you and Dave. And this guy is way high. He can't even enjoy the show because everyone, including you, is a cop to him. Quickly avert your gaze. The longer you acknowledge his paranoia, the more real it becomes for both of you.
6. The Tourist
Got drugs? This guy does, and he knows you do too. But you probably don't have the drugs he has. In fact, you don't want his drugs, but he's going to try to convince you that you do. If he's talking to you, it's too late, but if you see him, it's the dude with the heavy tattoos in the basketball jersey. He's too thin to just be messing with weed, but he'll smoke all of yours if you let him. Steer clear.
5. Ladies' Night
These ladies have boobies pushed way up to their chins, and their white T-shirts are tucked in tight. They arrived intoxicated and have been hooting and hollering since before the opening act. No one will ever understand why they wore those shoes to a concert.
The world outside of their immediate circle doesn't exist, and nothing can penetrate the bubble of hormonal solidarity except one thing. When you offer her a hit off that blunt you just masterfully rolled, you realize it's too late. Bye-bye Honolulu Honey! Farewell Pineapple Kush. That puppy's fate was sealed by the lips of twelve women you don't even know. They'll suck down your beautiful creation without even thank you.
4. The Hooper
Don't tell the these tight-bodied little birds who offer you the hoop that you can't hula. She'll just bat her sparkly eyelids at you.
She might say no to your offering of grassy goodness, but it's not because she doesn't get high. She's just smart enough to know when she's had enough. When getting hit on by suckers all night, she's going to need her wits about her. And honestly, she's probably tripping a type of billies you've never even heard of.
3. The Tweaker
Glow sticks? Check. CamelBak? Check. Newports? Check. This guy fell right off the festival circuit thinking he was going to take a break, but since his last molly dip, he's been itching for an opportunity to get to a show, even if DMB isn't exactly his cup of mushroom tea. Plus, if you pass it his way, he may pass some glow sticks your way, which your hooper lady friend will appreciate.
2. Phish Tour Phall Out
There's probably a pretty good reason for a Phan to pop up at a DMB concert. They missed the lottery presale on those Chicago dates or something. These are the folks in grungy tie-dye, sporting awful sunburns, and wreaking of hash and trail mix. You can find them laying on the lawn, sans blanket or towel, their socks slouched and stretched out with filth.
Like the tweaker, these kids don't belong at a Dave Matthews show. If they knew what was good for them, they'd be hustling up some five dollar grilled cheese sandwiches in the lots up in Illinois, but it's all good man.
The Phish head is easy to share with, but can be pretty long-winded, much like an extended jam. He won't be offended if you interrupt him or even remind him that you're trying to enjoy the show. If you really want to get him going though, ask him about the "Architect" bust out at Saratoga Springs last week.
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1. The Reefers
Look for the Reefers (the sandals, guys, the sandals), the Toms, the Birkenstocks, and the barefooted. Go ahead. Look down. Now go stand next to one of these people and look friendly. They'll share the magic.
Dave Matthews Band. With Blind Pilot. 7 p.m. Friday, July 19, and Saturday, July 20, at Cruzan Amphitheatre, 601-7 Sansbury's Way, West Palm Beach. Tickets cost $40.50 to $75. Call 561-795-8883, or visit cruzanamphitheatre.net.