Matson on Music
Commentary: Block Party 2012 humanity update
The one constant at Block Party is people. They're everywhere. And while much human bottlenecking has been eliminated over the years at the festival with better stage/path planning by organizers, you're still dealing with thousands of revelers squashed into narrow streets, narrowed further by chain link fences. Everyone is utterly self-interested, drinking, smoking, looking for their friends. Being trapped in a mob and needing to get out is like being inside a heart attack. But it can be done. And Block Partiers — like festival- and concertgoers everywhere — can be brutal about it.
One guy during Grimes' set Saturday shoved his way through the main stage crowd repeatedly yelling "no homo!" — either unaware of Capitol Hill's sexually-diverse population, or excited to take his homophobia to ground zero.
Another low point for humanity on Saturday: main stage security guards during Beat Connection's set squirting girls in the front row in the chest with water guns, which were better used for cooling people jammed deep in the crowd. Sadly, the girls were into it, posing for a photographer who appeared out of nowhere.
It's impossible not to offend in life. It's just one of those things. But at Block Party when we're all caught up in the music and atmosphere and touching each other, we could try harder to respect boundaries.