On the final day of Lolla, my karma gave to me, a stranger who told me how he got crabs.
So last August marked the third year in a row that I attended Lollapalooza which is a music festival held at Grant Park in Chicago, Illinois. The trip was fun as usual. While there, I engaged in one of the weirdest conversations I have ever had with a stranger.
The conversation took place on Sunday, August 10, 2010. This was the 3rd and final day of Lollapalooza this year. Soundgarden and Arcade Fire were the headliners that night.
We started out the day by reluctantly checking out of the hotel we stayed at. Following this, we walked down the street in an attempt to find a bar to drink at before we hit the shows. The first show we were planning on seeing was Blitzen Trapper. My two friends (let’s just call them Bob and George) and I sat at the corner end of the bar and guzzled a variety of different kinds of beer that you don’t find in Iowa. This was a rare treat for us considering the beer selection in Iowa usually consists of Coors, Busch, Budweiser, Michelob, etc.
We were there for about 15 minutes before Bob and George started talking to 3 women in their mid-twenties. 2 of them were over-weight, but very friendly and the other one was somewhat attractive, but had a tatoo of a snake extending her entire upper chest. The tail of the snake started at her left breast and the head of the snake looked as if it wanted to visciously take a bite out of her right nipple. I was able to see this so clearly because the girl was wearing a skimpy tank-top which revealed an abundance of cleavage. From the moment I met her, all I could do was ponder her reasoning for having such an odd tatoo and why she would decide to place the tatoo where she did. My initial perception of her was that she could be a lesbian who had no future plans of giving birth to and/or breast-feeding a baby. With a tatoo like that you would think breast-feeding would be out of the question. If it isn’t out of the question, then it should be. Can you imagine a baby sucking on it’s mother’s nipple and every time it moves it’s eyes up it sees a snake with it’s mouth wide open ready to strike it? It’s likely that this would frighten a baby. Heck, most adults are frightened by snakes.
Even if my lesbian theory were true, would her female partner want to suck on her nipples, knowing that when she did so, she’d have a snake staring at her as if it wanted to bite her nose off? Probably not. This thought combined with, “when her boobs start sagging, this snake on her boobs is going to resemble a grumpy caterpillar” had me convinced that this was the dumbest tatoo I had ever seen in my entire life.
My lesbian theory was proven false after I went to the restroom to take a piss and came back to discover that the girl had taken my seat at the bar and was basically dry humping Bob’s leg. I no longer had a seat to sit in, but everything was alright because as soon as I walked up to them their conversation had shifted from God know’s what to the shows we were going to watch that day. I am willing to discuss music under any circumstances, even if my seat had been stolen by a chick with a snake tatoo on her tits.
I already had my schedule set for the day. When I go to Lollapalooza, I can be pretty selfish about which shows I attend and rarely give up any ground when someone tries to persuade me to see a show that conflicts with my previously set schedule. I have seen a few shows by myself due to my unwillingness to budge.
These girls wanted to see the Ike Reilly Assassination show and had my buddies convinced that this was the show to go to because they claimed that they sounded like Primus. This conflicted with my schedule for the day. I was going to be at Blitzen Trapper while this concert was taking place. Not to mention I love Primus, and from what I heard of Ike Reilly Assasination, they sound nothing like Primus. I wondered where in the hell they came up with such a weird comparison. Ike Reilly Assassination would definitely have been cool to see, but I was way more familiar with Blitzen Trapper. I had been listening to them all summer.
Bob, George and I left the bar and ventured on our way to the Budweiser stage for the Blitzen Trapper show. The snake tatoo chick came along with us. After a few minutes of watching Blitzen Trapper, Bob went with the snake tatoo chick to the Ike Reilly Assassination show and George started heading towards the Playstation stage to get a good spot for Mumford and Sons. I was officially by myself for the time being, which was fine with me because the effects of the beer I drank prior to entering the gates were starting to fade away and I was starting to feel slightly hungover. I was feeling lethargic and kind of wanted to be alone for a while.
After the Blitzen Trapper show came to a conclusion, I decided to sit near the Budweiser stage and watch Mumford and Sons from a distance playing on the Playstation stage. I sat down with my back against the only unoccupied tree in the area. Mumford and Sons were kicking ass on stage, but I was very apathetic at this point. I still felt hungover and wanted to take a nap. I wanted to be left alone and was enjoying this moment of solitude. Yeasayer was getting ready to play on the Budweiser stage immediately following the Mumford and Sons show, and I wanted to have some energy for that show. Out of all the bands playing at Lollapalooza this year; Yeasayer, Grizzly Bear, MGMT and Chromeo were the bands I was most excited to see. I blared the song, “Tightrope” by Yeasayer on repeat many times over the course of the summer.
This moment of solitude lasted approximately 10 minutes. As my eyes were fixated on the Mumford and Sons concert, I noticed a figure in the corner of my eye who appeared to be walking directly towards me. When I turned my head to get a better look at the person, I noticed that it was an average-sized man in his mid-twenties who was wearing a backwards black cap and a black WWE wrestling t-shirt. I thought to myself, “wow, I’ve seen a lot of different types of people at Lollapalooza, but I think this may be the first WWE fan I have seen here. Usually the WWE fans gravitate towards Ozzfest, Laserfest and the Warped Tour.”
As he continued to walk towards me, I noticed that he had a cold gaze which ironically reminded me of The Undertaker from WWE . I kept expecting him to change directions or make an attempt at sidetracking me, but he walked right up to me. When he came within a foot of me, he said, “hey man.” At first I turned my head around to see if he was speaking to someone else because by the expression on his face, it seemed as if he were looking right through me. When I looked behind and saw the base of the tree, I was finally convinced that this robotic dude was trying to talk to me.
I wasn’t in a very chipper mood, and definitely not in the mood to make new friends so I unenthusiastically replied with, “yeah……?” He asked, “do you mind if I sit on the other side of this tree?” I vaguely shook my head and rolled my eyes in annoyance and replied, “nah whatever, go ahead. I don’t own the tree, dude.”
I sighed when the guy instantly started chatting with me after he sat down. His first words to me were, “this has been a pretty cool weekend, but it would be so much better if Disturbed was playing.” I just sort of shrugged my shoulders and thought, “great, I get to sit here and watch the Mumford and Sons show with a dude who’s pissed that Disturbed isn’t playing at Lollapalooza. Why on earth would Disturbed play at Lollapalooza?”
Usually I am a very friendly person to anyone I come in contact with unless for some reason I don’t like the person. If I don’t like someone, I either avoid them or act like a complete asshole to them. This situation was different though. I didn’t have a reason to not like this guy and I wasn’t being blatantly unfriendly, but I wasn’t necessarily being overly nice either. I was exhausted from 3 days of Lollapalooza, feeling hungover and my feet were killing me because I made the unwise decision to wear rubber Croc flip flops the first day of Lollapalooza, which destroyed my toes. I had a horrible case of the grumpies, but this dude was blissfully unaware of how annoyed I was with his mere presence.
This guy rambled on about random bullshit and even asked me questions about my weekend and life. Earlier I described this man as appearing robotic, but if anyone came off as a robot, it was probably me. My responses to his questions consisted of “yes,” “uh-huh” and “no.” He asked, “did you come with friends?” I replied with, “yes.” He then gave a 5 minute speech about why he didn’t come with friends and I would drop “uh-huh’s” every minute or so to make it appear as if I were listening to what he had to say, when I most certainly wasn’t.
I remember him asking me if I saw the Gogol Bordello show the day before and I replied with, “no.” He then went on a 10 minute tangent about how I should have made it a point to see Gogol Bordello and how I was crazy for not seeing them. I systematically dropped the “uh-huhs” when it seemed appropriate. I am good at being an “acting like I’m listening” robot. At one point I messed up though. The dude evidently asked where I was from and I replied with, “yes.” He gave me a look which implied that I needed to elaborate more and I said, “sorry man, what did you say? The music is loud and I couldn’t hear you.” He then asked in a louder, more enunciated tone, “WHERE….DO….YOU…..LIVE?” “Iowa,” I said.
I acted like a robot for at least a half hour with this dude while simultaneously trying to watch the Mumford and Son’s show when a group of 4-5 girls walked by. This provoked a perverted comment from the WWE homeboy who was chillin’ with me. He said, “oh my God, look at the asses on those bitches!” I responded with, “yeah man, you should go try to get on that.” Little did he know this was my cunning attempt to direct him elsewhere. He then said, “I wish man.” I inquired, “why wouldn’t you?” He said, “I wouldn’t stand a chance with any of those girls.” His sense of self-awareness startled me for a moment. He then went on to say, “yeah, I’ve never been laid before. I’m still a virgin.” This actually sparked my interest a bit. I was also bewildered that I had just met this dude a half-hour ago, and he was already confessing to me that he was a virgin.
I asked, “how old are you?” He said, “I told you man, I am 28.” I replied with, “your 28 years old and you have never had sex? Why is that? Against your religion or something?” He said, “ah fuck no! I’m just not very good with talking to girls. I did get a suck job though.” I thought to myself, “haha, a ‘suck job?’ I’ve never heard oral sex being referred to as a ‘suck job’ before.” I then asked, “so was it a good suck job at least?” “No, I ended up getting crabs from it,” he said.
After he said this, my immediate thought was “ok, within a half-hour this guy confesses to me that he is a virgin AND the only time he has gotten any play from a woman, it resulted in crabs aka pubic lice. Why do people seem to naturally feel comfortable to disclose information like this to me? Do I come off as someone who wants to hear about everyone’s woes pertaining to sex and the transmitted diseases associated with it?”
Then I started pondering the scenario in my head. Things weren’t adding up. I thought to myself, “Wait a second, how is getting crabs from a blow job even possible? I thought those were spread pubically.” I decided to confront him about this.
“Aren’t crabs spread pubically?” I asked. He replied with, “huh?” I then elaborated by saying, “did you by chance receive a suck job from Teen Wolf’s sister?” “What are you talking about?” he asked. I dug deeper by asking, “did this woman who gave you the suck job have a beard?” He said, “haha, no! She wasn’t THAT bad.” As I wondered how bad the girl who sucked him off looked, I simultaneously rolled my eyes and said to him, “dude, your missing my point. I don’t think it’s possible to get crabs from a suck job. Ya see, to my knowledge, crabs are spread from pube to pube. In other words, if you have crabs in your pubes, you probably acquired them by your pubic region being in contact with another person’s pubic region.” He then adamently stated, “dude, I swear I got crabs from a suck job!” I then said, “well, I guess she may have had them in the hair on her head then.” He laughed and said, “haha yeah right, like crabs actually live in real hair.” I looked at him and sort of shook my head and thought to myself, “Good grief. This moron probably believes that crabs literally are tiny little crabs from the sea. He evidently isn’t aware that crabs are very closely related to head lice.
By the time this weird conversation came to a conclusion, the Yeasayer crowd was accumulating towards the front of the Budweiser stage and I wanted to get a good spot, so I stood up and tapped the dude on his head and said, “nice meeting ya dude and take my advice; if you ever have a girl go down on you again, make sure you check her head or beard for crabs before she goes to town on your schlong.” The dumbass thought I was joking and started laughing hysterically and said, “alright man!!! Will do!”
Bob met me halfway through the Yeasayer set and was like, “dude I just had a girlfriend for about an hour and then ditched her. We were going out and I just left her right on the spot and gave her a fake phone number.” I was like, “I’m assuming that your talking about the snake tatoo chick, right?” “Yeah,” he said. I then asked him, “hey dude, is it possible to get crabs from a blow job?” He initially looked at me with a somewhat confused expression on his face, but then realized that I am notorious for asking random questions such as these at random times and non-chaulantly responded with, “nah man.” I was preparing to explain to Bob, the story of my conversation with the stranger that had taken place when he said, “dude, I can officially say that I have dated a girl with a snake tatoo on her tits and broke her heart.” I totally forgot about what I was going to tell him and responded with, “You know what, man? That IS pretty freaking wild.” We discussed this issue further and I forgot to tell him or anyone about this strange conversation I had until now.