10 Things I Learned at Punk Rock Bowling

Melissa Fossum
Bowling, beer, and punk-- what's not to love?

The last few punk fans staggered out of downtown Las Vegas Tuesday, marking the end of Punk Rock Bowling. It was a fun experience marked by four days of music (including the club shows), pool parties, and a bowling tournament. The weekend went by way too fast, though I'm sure I speak on behalf of most festival goers by saying it's nice to be able to sleep in my own bed tonight.

Coming home was bittersweet. I'm still browsing Instagram and YouTube to relieve my favorite moments from the festival. With that, here are the 10 things I learned by going to Punk Rock Bowling this year.

See Also:
Punk Rock Bowling 2013 in Las Vegas: Day 3, 5/27/13
Punk Rock Bowling 2013 in Las Vegas: Day 2, 5/26/13
Punk Rock Bowling Tournament in Las Vegas, 5/26/13
Punk Rock Bowling 2013 in Las Vegas: Day 1, 5/25/13

Just go with it.
Staying out past sunrise when you have a deadline is normally not a good idea, but it's Vegas, baby. My first night in town, I checked the time and saw it was 4 in the morning. I was exhausted, but I was in the middle of a conversation with some awesome people.
Don't stand at the bar by yourself; strike up conversation with whoever is standing next to you -- bonus points if they're attractive. With that . . .

Punks are amazing people.
I went to the festival by myself but made a bunch of new friends by chatting up random folks. If you're singing along at The Lawrence Arms or 7 Seconds after-show, you're my kind of person. If you pull up a seat next to me and start talking about The Knife, we'll probably hit it off. Tattoo talk is also fun.

I had only one bad encounter to speak of, and it was pretty funny. A crowd surfer ran out of the pit and ran square into me. The photographer next to me pointed out that if the angle had been a little different, I probably would have been knocked backwards into a trash can. Then we laughed it off and said it was probably because he hates nerds.

Melissa Fossum
Just follow the Turbojugend.
Want to party? Just look for a Turbonegro fan.

Of everyone I encountered, the Turbojugend were the biggest party animals at the festival. Imagine a sex-obsessed Andrew W.K. who likes to drink. Turbonegro had one of the craziest crowds at the festival, and I can only imagined where those folks ended up after the show.

Hot Water Music can and will get old.
HWM is one of my all-time favorite bands. At first, I was excited to hear their music as other bands set up to play, but after hearing Hot Water Music for three days in a row, it got old fast.

You can get beer to go.
As I closed out my tab at Country Saloon Friday night, the bartender asked if I'd like a drink to go.* It took a second for this to register, just like how seeing people smoking inside was weird at first. If I didn't say yes, I probably wouldn't have ended up chatting with some bands Friday night.

*The only kicker is that Pabst Blue Ribbon tall boys are four times cheaper at the grocery store.

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