So, you’re going to Rockabillaque in Charleston, SC – Your day will be filled with music, cars, bikes, and people. Lots of people! Do you like cars? They got classic cars. Do you want bikes? They got vintage bikes. Do you love live music? They have your rockabilly on at least four outdoor stages and a wide variety of contests from pin-up girl pageant to beard and mustache. However, before you embark for a fun day on Montague Street and Park Circle, here are some things to consider. Firstly, parking. The act of hunting for a place to park similar to an animal hunting for food. Second, people. Lots of people. It’s a scientific fact that gathering people into smaller spaces encourages engagement. So be prepared to ENGAGE! Last but not least, the FACILITIES if you know what I mean.

Parking. Circling the block several times to find that elusive parking space. Similar to a dog circling to lie down. Will you be riding a motorcycle or driving a car? Do you have a secret need to brag about your good parking fortune?

I’ve always had the need to get as close as possible to any event I attend. Even the gym parking lot was not safe from my need to park next to the door. Is there something wrong with me or is there a psychological science for this need? Having my motorcycle significantly reduces the unavailability of parking spaces. Even with that advantage, there’s a feeling of accomplishing something great when I find one.

If you’re an extrovert, finding that space is like an animal searching for food or a fox guarding her den. Hey, it’s a parking space, not your personal territory. There will be lots of parking trolls competing for limited space and thinking “I’m going to win!”. Sacrificing the kids to go lie down in the space should not be discounted from strategy options.

Engagement. Yes, this is important. There have been scientific studies to determine the best festival layout that will attract festival attendees.

It seems that events where the venue is somewhat smaller than the number of people attending the events promote more human engagement. Promotes more human engagement? What ‘Tomfoolery’ am I talking about? The extrovert that was willing to sacrifice their kids to obtain a parking space will enjoy the closeness of this event. By noon, elbows will be a-rubbing, and non-intended body contact will be in abundance stimulating the extrovert’s reward and pleasure system activated by their dopamine neurotransmitters.

Introverts, you might want to stay home and read. I might suggest

‘Introvert Survival Tactics: How to Make Friends, Be More Social, and Be Comfortable In Any Situation (When You’re People’s Out and Just Want to Go Home And Watch TV Alone)‘

Facilities. Those little purple fiberglass huts along the street curb are public restrooms and are gender neutral. I should point out A Public Restroom Etiquette class for ‘The Impatient, Potentially Violent Moron’ will be held at 11 A.M. Later our class will divide into three sections, depending on what you identify with: stubby, shorty, or uncertain-ty. If you are here looking for a free meal, you might try Lowcountry Harley Davidson. Dave is out front grilling burgers and hot dogs. Free while they last!

Great. Let’s start. First off, the basics before heading out into the crowds. Say, you have to go to the bathroom while standing in the street crowded with people. Here are some tips!

There are several options. Here are the two I recommend. If you’re having a conversation, abruptly leave while grabbing your friend or frantically shout while holding your legs together, “OH NO. OH G*D NO. NOT AGAIN.” These exits make it clear you don’t mess around when it comes to urination. Having a partner hold onto your shoulders during your frantic departure will heighten the urgency of the situation.

Remember the purple huts I mentioned? Some people have an aversion to using these oases of bodily functions.  If you have this phobia, wandering around for ten to thirty minutes finding a restroom is a reality. Restaurants frown upon non-paying customers using their toilet. Don’t fret! I’ve perfected a technique which works. Firstly, the approach taken to bypass the bathroom N**i’s depends whether you’re solo or with a friend.

If you’re solo, find a table of 2 or 3 persons. Approach the table and ask if it’s ok if you sit down to hide from your ex. This technique works particularly well with women. Once seated, be sure a waiter has seen you sitting there. It doesn’t matter if the table is assigned to the waiter or not. The point is to be seen sitting down in the restaurant.

After exchanging pleasantries, excuse yourself. Ask a waiter where the restroom can be found, remember, holding your legs together amplifies the appearance of urgency. If the occupied sign on the door is on, try shaking the door in a way that suggests you haven’t taken your medication lately, and all that separates you from a horde of monks, and your salvation is the door to this restroom.

Perhaps nothing will come of your efforts, but don’t fret! Passive aggression is the sneaky brother of active aggression that, without admitting anything is wrong, gets what you want.  Coughing, shuffling your feet loudly and complaining to people next to you are forms of passive aggression added with comments such as ‘Like what is she/he doing in there anyways? I might get the manager.’ This should speed up the process, especially if you start counting down loudly. If you’re with a friend, follow all of the previous actions. Your friend, pretending to scan the room, will be the ex you’re hiding from.

This will be my second year attending Rockabillaque. I’m looking forward to a day of music, cars, and bikes. Oh, and LOTS of people.

See ya there!

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