On Tuesday I flew up to Brisbane to take my Dad to see Fleetwood Mac.
We are both big fans, and it was a great opportunity to slide in some major brownie points leading into Christmas. After watching review after review assuring us all band members were alive and vertical, I was pretty sure we were in for a good show.
What I didn’t know was that I was also about to be served up a life lesson for the road.
Right, so the first important thing to note were our seats. I did not scrimp on the tickets and went for the ‘gold’ section (can you hear that? They’re my Brownie Points clocking over), which meant that we were privy to every facial expression, every private glance, and every backstage tantrum that went down both onstage and off. Unlike most big concerts, we weren’t squinting at lego figures on stage, nor trying to take it in via a huge LED blowup screen. We were inside the show.
This made the whole experience magical. I felt like getting a secret view into the life of a rock star. Instead of noticing his grey hair and drooping chin from afar, I was rather metres away from Lindsay Buckingham’s *still* sexy dance moves and freakishly fast fingers on the guitar. Instead of seeing her limp across the stage with her bung hip, I was able to view Stevie shaking out her long blonde hair backstage as she threw on a top hat and heels.
I saw the biker boots of Christine McVie, the hi-fives from John McVie, and the wild drumming of Mick Fleetwood. It was like watching rock ‘n’ roll legends play it out in my own private petrie dish. And it was through this proximity that I made the shocking realisation: these sexagenarians were so, SO much cooler than me.
Throughout the show, each band member took their turn (except John McVie, because he’s too damn cool) in offering up some memories from their heyday. Stevie spoke about saving her pennies to shop at a famed San Fran clothing store that was favoured by Janis Joplin, while Lindsay spilled the beans about the band’s famed tumultuous relationships and romances. There were stories of drinking and bell-bottomed jeans and road trips and the whole audience was enraptured as we imagined the greying five onstage as young, 20-somethings in San Francisco, making music and trying to hit the big time.
It was at this point that it hit me.
“They were my age,” I thought with a dull thud of realisation.
“Maybe even a bit older. And not one of them has spoken once about career ladders or healthy eating or saving for a house deposit.”
It was crushing. In 2015, I am a Gen-Y professional who, by all accounts, is ticking the boxes to a successful life. I have a great boyfriend, a nice flat, I pay my rent on time, I go to the gym. My friends are popping out well-behaved children, and I even own a Nutri-Bullet. So why did I feel so SAD comparing myself to the wild ones of Fleetwood Mac in the groovy, swingin’ 60’s? Easy: They were having fun. And for all of my ticked boxes and well-developed quad muscles, I am not.