The Band: Gogol Bordello
The Venue: Henry Fonda Theater in Hollywood
The Audience: Smelly
Seriously, I haven’t been surrounded by that much bromhidrosis since I stopped attending those Dungeons & Dragons campaigns in 1986. The main floor area contained all the fetid sweat without any of the polyhedral dice.
The concert itself was fantastic. Marukan took me deep into the mosh pit. The band put on an energetic show and came back for two encore sets. I admit that I had to bounce out of the pogo mob at one point in order to stand at the side door for a whiff of blessed fresh air that wafted in whenever some disorderly anarchist was ejected and had to be driven home by his mother in a station wagon. And to think – she’d paid $15 to park. She’s not getting any of that money back.
A man wearing an imperial mustache and a lot of neck tattoos stood next to me. He would wait until young women returned from the bar with beverages, then offer to hold their drinks for them while they danced. The ladies would get swept away with the dancing crowd and never returned after the songs ended. I saw him score five beers in a span of thirty minutes.
I saw Marukan’s hat get thrown on stage. When the show was over, she was milling around, looking for it on the ground. I went over to the security man and asked if they’d found a black hat. He handed it back to me. For a brief moment, I was a hero.