Somewhere in a short, now fragmented space of time, between the Phish years of late high school and the techno years of early college, I was an "emo skater". With a proper Alien Workshop skate board in tow, pants large enough for three, and endless, annoying Birdhouse stickers adorning my car's bumper. I thought, I knew, I was the bomb. The emo skater bomb. Oh woe is me, The Promise Ring and Sunny Day, my tears run as raging rivers of angst, like you will never know. An then I stretched my earring holes with plugs and collected Etnies and vans and never quite got an ollie down. (Although, to my credit, I was and still am, a kick-ass snowboarder) The Warped Tour saw me for a few years straight, diligently wearing my Hook-ups hoodie everywhere.
And then it happened, I grew up a little. Enter new boyfriend, quiet, techno loving boyfriend, who, by odd chances was a very good, former skateboarder. I suppose he grew up a little too, turning in the board for the greener and more sophisticated pastures of electronica.
was I, raver girl. New boyfriend gave me a Speedy-J. CD, it literally changed my life. I don't know how, but it did. I kind of chilled out...a little. So my transformation began and born from the synthesizer and drum machine of Plastikman. Ken Iish, Jeff Mills, John Acquaviva, inspired and captivated. New boyfriend took me to see Richie and Matthew Hawtin at the Hook in Windsor. Right there, right next to Plastikman I stood. We spent some amazing, loud, alive with sweaty youth evenings downtown at Alvin's, a legendary, little, hole in the wall bar/club, where sets of vinyl were spun and dreams were made. I was a raver. I knew it. I could barely stay awake past midnight, I didn't take drugs, but I was a raver, a Detroit raver none-the-less. I had, in my mind...arrived. "Hi me, nice to meet you. Thank God I know who you are now," I would say in the quiet moments.
One night it was Christmas. Aunts and uncles, grandparents, cousins, they all converged on my parents house. Eating, talking, exchanging gifts in the celestial innocence of what is Christmas.
When out on my front lawn there arose such a clatter, I sprang from a pile of cousins to see what's the matter.
Not to much surprise, but who should appear, it was purple haired Alan and shaved head Brianne dear!
Come! Put your clothes on and the fresh kicks, we must go. The rave is a waiting and it's starting to snow!
The sight of these hooligans, the piercing and all, brought grandma such fright, she nearly passed out in our hall.
And upon my descent on the stairs in raver gear, my mother gave such a look to instill guilt and fear.
A merry Christmas to all and to all a goodnight, sorry I've gotta go but there's a rave, it's gonna be tight!
So, there I went, RAVER, so hard-core that I'd go on Christmas. *gasp*! I remember this particular "party", it was called "Home". Held at St. Andrew's Hall, an old building, now a club downtown. By this time, most illegal raves were gone, the bulk held in legit venues. Katie couldn't come with us because as her mom said "they inject people with drugs at these things." Back then laughable, but now as a mother myself, I can understand her concern and fear...although, I never saw anyone injected with anything. In fact, my friends and I were ourselves completely clean and sober. We didn't go for the stupid drugs, we went for the music and of course, to dance! At Home we saw several friends from high school and even meet up with a few from college. One was on e or speed or both or something and I remember feeling so scared and worried about him. My God I thought, what has become of my friend. It was a shock to me, but I was still naive raver girl. Around 1:30am, just an hour and a half in, my ADD kicked in and my energy wore out. Pseudo-raver-girl had enough and annoyingly asked genuine new boyfriend to please take her home.
And soon her life would lead her down yet another short-lived path. Past the Carl Craig experiment at Cranbrook, and the Derrick Mays, the Juan Atkins, and into the beat driven arms of Mos Def and Tribe and Jurassic 5. Who was this girl?