I’ve been to mosh pits before, including its arguably more insane variant, the circle pit. But it was last Saturday night, at Pulp Summer Slam XIII, when I stayed in one the longest. By my estimate, I was probably at the pit during 90% of Cannibal Corpse’s 14-song set. I got lumps and bruises to show.
It wasn’t planned. I didn’t go to Amoranto Stadium seeking sadistic gratification. I went there to listen to live music, from bands I only see in magazines and on the Internet, to bang my head and perhaps do a little pushing and shoving… but only at a safe spot and with my bros nearby. That, however, changed after a conversation with my tukayo, the writer Karl de Mesa, at the venue.
“Dude,” he said. “Slam ka?”
I gave him a safe answer: “Not sure.” And then I threw him the same question.
“Nope,” he blurted. “I’m too old for that shit.”
Understandable, I thought. Like me, he’s well into his 30s and isn’t exactly one may call “athletic.” Still, his retort got me thinking. Am I too old for that shit too? The question — and its thinly veiled challenge — burned and festered in my head. It nagged at me. It made me uncomfortable. The English power metal band Dragonforce cried thunder in front of us, but half my concentration was on that question.
I figured there was only one way to find out, and the realization made my amygdala, the “fear center” of the brain, kick into high gear. Those who say there’s no harm in trying aren’t talking about mosh pits. Continue reading