The destruction of my festival virginity

 

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You know that fascination with Woodstock? Not the legitimate flick of a remembrance our parents have before they avoid telling us just how many drugs they did that weekend. I’m not talking about that. I’m talking about the fascination our generation has with Woodstock. Why do we idolize an event that happened 30 years before any of us were even conceived? It’s simple. It changed the face of music. EDC, Lollapalooza and Tomorrowland, none of it would have been possible before Woodstock.

I’ve never truly understood my generation’s obsession with the festival life. Sure I enjoy music, but I figured festivals were just another excuse for us to exercise the mass-produced but still carefree hippie lifestyle that Urban Outfitters and repurposed wood furnishings were trying to establish.

This past weekend I ignored my inhibitions and attended Electric Forest on the west coast of Michigan in the heart of Sherwood Forest. I’ve honestly never enjoyed anything more in my life…and I’ve taken a boat down the Seine in Paris and been in the same room as Justin Timberlake before.

I’m sure there are the mass-produced men and women who go so they can wear their feathered headbands and Ozzy Osbourne glasses, but the people I met and the things I experienced in this forest have forever changed my life for the better.

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 I washed my hair with a water bottle

I stayed up for 72 straight hours on substances that won’t be mentioned here

I had my brain melted by more String Cheese Incident than any person could ever handle

I lay in a hammock & watched British flight attendants cheer on a Mr. Tumnus lookalike while he walked a tightrope.

My body ran entirely off of alcohol, the above-mentioned – not mentioned – substances and turkey sandwiches.

We frantically searched for Carl all weekend – no luck.

 

But I think what really sold it for me were the people. The moment we starting setting up our campsite we were greeted by seven neighbors from four different directions offering hugs, guidance, food, beer and more substances. Women walked around freely with nothing but flare pants and pasties, and it was ok! People slept in the grass and floated freely from hammocks, but not before wishing you a Happy Forest! as you walked by. Everyone was at peace; there were good vibes, good music and all the inebriation anyone could ever need.

I’m not sure what this world has to do before this kind of behavior is accepted everywhere, but I think everyone would have a hell of a time once it did.

Until then I suppose I’ll be dreaming of hammocks and forest creatures, of open tents and dirty feet, and wait to go back home to the forest.

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COME SEEK US WHERE THE FOREST IS FOUND

WE LIVE TO DANCE ON THIS GROUND,

AND WHILE YOU’RE DREAMING, PONDER THIS;

YOU’VE FOUND A FAMILY YOU’LL NEVER MISS.

ONE WEEKEND YOU HAVE TO ABSORB

THE LOVE AND LIGHT, AND THEN MOVE FORWARD

TO BRING THE SONGS OF THE FOREST HOME

AND SCATTER THE MAGIC WHEREVER YOU ROAM.

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