Hello SXSW, We Meet Again
Dear South by Southwest Festival,
I guess it's that time of the year again.
The time when we either hide out in our homes (dreading the influx of far too many skinny bejeaned people into our beautiful city) or we feel saucy enough to join the Austin chaos (for a day before calling it quits). Your allure of fun and free swag is enough to give the bravest of hermits "FOMO" as they sit in their homes thirsting for free drinks and bass-inspired tinnitus. It wasn't enough for you to invade downtown. No, you had to spread your wings north, south, east, and west across this traffic-nightmare that we call home.
Let's be clear; we aren't hating on you. It isn't your fault that hundreds of filmmakers, tech innovators, and music acts come from near and far to hang out and pretend to work here for a week. We are just unable to sit back and stay quiet about the fact that things have gotten a little out of hand. How in the name of all that is holy are we supposed to finagle getting to and from day parties, private parties, night shows, and after parties without complete and utter mental and physical exhaustion?
Not to mention, during these three weeks of insanity, you must have a SXSW guest badge, a wristband, a press pass, or a "no one is going to let you in" free RSVP for anything worth attending. Let's just say, at this point, RSVPster has registered us for a criminal number of events. Thanks to you, we can take "purposely stand in line behind 2,000 people in a parking lot on the corner of 12th and Chicon" off of our bucket list.
This doesn't mean we're breaking up. We just have to get a few things off of our chest while apprehensively gearing up for the unpredictable March weather. Will there be monsoon-like rains or will we forget the sunblock and look like crab people come April 1st? The only thing we can say with certainty is to bring your poncho, some sunscreen, a phone charger (in case you happen to catch an AT&T signal in the middle of 3.5 billion people), and a steady supply of Pedialyte. Let's face it; you won't drink the Pedialyte (or any water-based substance for that matter) for the duration of the fest. It's all free Miller High-Life and Mike's Hard Lemonade samples from here on out.
Can we also talk about the fashion choices you encourage in people? We applaud self-expression, but it's like floating through a sea of party-goers dressed for a hoedown at Buckingham Palace. We can only hope that one guy is hiding a change of clothes under his Canadian Tuxedo because temperatures are going to be reaching "surface of the sun" level inside of that jean jacket. Also, just going to throw it out there, not every girl needs to look like "Live Through This" era Courtney Love to fit in around here either.
We have to admit, from the 700 people in 1987 to the over 420,000 in 2017; you must be doing something right. That's why come rain or shine, we still plan on putting on a dirty t-shirt and pocketing a flask (that will probably be confiscated within two hours) before charging out the door on March 9th like the SXSW warriors we truly are. However, we can't promise you won't see us complaining in the only port-a-potty we could find vacant at 2:00 am. We look forward to pushing our way through your crowds. It looks like we're both in this for the long haul.
The Mightier Content Team