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How to Get Weird at Outside Lands

Updated: Jun 29, 2022 09:44
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Awesome photo by Tom Tompkins from Liquid Bread

I go to Outside Lands just about every year. It’s a great festival because I can get as weird as possible but still sleep in my own bed at night. It’s also fun to take notes on all the strange observations I make. I think you’ll love them. Here they are:

* For many people, it was the first time they had the opportunity to see D’Angelo in 15 years. Just looking at the faces in the audience, I could tell how much it meant to so many people. It was really incredible…almost as incredible as the white dude in the Rasta colored tam hat that had fake dreads attached.

* Why on earth would you bring your infant to a music festival? If you can afford $135 a day tickets, you can surely afford a baby sitter.

* It’s weird how smokers just drop their cigarettes anywhere. The same person who might give you a dirty look for not recycling your soda can will then turn around and drop their cigarette butt on the ground and walk away.

* I was completely flabbergasted by how much trash people just dropped on the ground. I don’t remember there being that much in previous years. Maybe litterbugging is in with the millennials now.


* They have AA meetings at Outside Lands called “Sober Lands”. Ashley joked that it was “Sober Lands: Brought to you by Budweiser”. It was actually sponsored by Heineken.

sober lands
photo by Laura Neuzeth
* Amon Tobin made me wish I was more fucked up…in a good way. Also, he and Tom Waits should totally collaborate.

* People who don’t lose their shit and dance wildly to Big Freedia are dead inside. There were surprisingly a lot them.

 photo from Bay Area Bites

* Speaking of losing shits, I’ve begun to wonder if there really is such thing as enough toilets. Also, I’m pretty sure the term “necessary evil” was invented for porta potties

* Here’s a life hack: If there is no purell in the port potty, just spit in your hands. You will trick your drunk self into thinking you did use purell.

* Motherfuckers gotta stop calling this town San Fran! You wouldn’t yell from an NYC stage “Make some noise Big Apple!” would you? San Fran is just as atrocious.

* Outside Lands is without a doubt the best looking San Francisco gets all year. Where did all these really really attractive people come from and can we keep just like thirty of them?

hot girl
photo from Pop Sugar
* I’m always impressed by the incredible positions people pass out in. It’s like they’ve  managed to break the laws of physics by getting too fucked up.
passed out

* The cats at San Franpsycho absolutely owned Outside Lands this year. It was amazing to see how many people were rocking SFP gear. OSL and SFP should team up for next year’s official shirts.

* I very briefly had a record label when I was in college. It was called Small Kingdom and we put out one record. At the time the folks from The Devil Makes Three all worked at the cafe I lived above so I went to all their early shows. At one point I tried to get them to be on my record label. Not doing so was probably the smartest thing they ever did.


Cooper from The Devil Makes 3. His banjo brilliantly says “This Machine Annoys Fascists”

* Singing the chorus to “Tiny Dancer” with nearly 100,000 other people was one of the most magical things I’ve ever done in my life. It might be the closest thing I’ll ever experience oneness with my fellow man.

* I was stopped probably 100 times by people telling me that they support my mayoral campaign and that they were going to vote for me. I don’t know if I’d ever realized before how many people’s lives I’m able to reach. It’s some pretty profound shit.

* I cried during Rocket Man. The immensity of hearing that good of a song for 34 years and then finally hearing it in person was too much for me to handle.

See you next year Outside Lands

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Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Broke-Ass Stuart - Editor In Cheap

Stuart Schuffman, aka Broke-Ass Stuart, is a travel writer, poet, TV host, activist, and general shit-stirrer. His website is one of the most influential arts & culture sites in the San Francisco Bay Area and his freelance writing has been featured in Lonely Planet, Conde Nast Traveler, The Bold Italic, and too many other outlets to remember. His weekly column, Broke-Ass City, appears every other Thursday in the San Francisco Examiner. Stuart’s writing has been translated into four languages. In 2011 Stuart created and hosted the travel show Young, Broke, and Beautiful on IFC and in 2015 he ran for Mayor of San Francisco and got nearly 20k votes.

He's been called "an Underground legend": SF Chronicle, "an SF cult hero":SF Bay Guardian, and "the chief of cheap": Time Out New York.