because the personal is cultural
After the show, I told myself that, from now on, I would go to a concert when I felt like I needed it… until the next time. This sounded a lot like the relationship I’ve had with sex. As someone who is demisexual within hookup culture, sex has rarely been able to occur organically or exist as itself for me. Sex was something I tended to have when I wanted something else, something I couldn’t get, like human touch. The experience was rarely satisfying; men are experts at fucking without touching.
Because of that, there is another way that concerts and hookups are similar for me: I can’t do either of them sober. Much like in the past I have used weed to bypass my demisexuality and have sex, I have had to use weed and alcohol to get the better of my social anxiety at shows.
I always assumed that I connected to punk and metal through queer rage. While that might not be entirely inaccurate, I’ve been wondering if there might not be another reason. After all, if that were the case, where are the queers? No, maybe it's another kind of rage, one for which I don’t quite have a name yet.
So, despite my anxiety, I take my edible, I drink my beer, and I go to the show. And, as I stand there, I realize that, even though I would like to be able to claim the contrary, I don’t do it because I have any kind of guts. I do it because I love it so much. And that’s how I get to my definition of love.
has an MA in Film Studies and works in contemporary dance. His fiction has appeared in Headlight Anthology, Cactus Heart, and Birkensnake.