YOU CAN LEAD A HESHER TO WATER BUT YOU CAN'T make him drink. Especially if there's more water in the drinks than booze. And what's up with the Ogden Services pricing? (They sell those $4 hotdogs the Kingdome.) My God, I paid $25 for a double Maker's, a double Stoli Sea Breeze, and a pint o' Moosehead. As I watched the young lady measure out my drinks, I thought, "I hope the Mariners can pull this one out." I quickly realized I wasn't at a Mariners game when a fat dude with Vuarnet sunglasses (really!), a headband, and an ill-fitting Bob Seger shirt bounced off of me and stumbled back into the sea of people. Oh yeah, now I remember. This is what rock 'n' roll at the Ballard Firehouse is all about: tattooed bikers mixing with balding, speed-pupiled burn-outs and Crass-loving and -looking liberty-spiked punkers--and topping it all off, Motörhead. It was all starting to make some fucked-up sense, and in a sick way I was glad to be part of it.

I can't be too harsh, because the Firehouse did comp in the whole goddamn Stranger staff--but we did earn our keep, buying more drinks than a group of Irishmen partying with St. Bushmill's Choir at the Owl n' Thistle on St. Patty's Day. But I digress. What this story's really about is a man named John, a fellow I met at the show. John wore a Metallica hockey jersey, and was fucked up out his mind and in utter bliss--after all, he'd been waiting "15 fucking years, man" to see his rock gods, Motörhead.

Speaking of Motörhead, Lemmy's "Murder One" bass line took over the room like one of my grandfather Ned Carbone's farts. That is to say, thunderous, all-encompassing, and, at the core, truly vile. Lemmy's signature sheared-at-the-bone vocal assault was met with an ear-piercing guitar crunch that turned "Metallica" John and his team of evil-minded friends loose on the crowd. If you were to hear one thing over the sound of the band, it was the sonic boom of 500 men blowing their wad at the same time when Motörhead ended their set with "Ace of Spades." As I stumbled toward the door looking for my friend who had passed out, I thought of Lemmy, and the crowd, and most of all, John. It all seemed too surreal. These fossilized rock dinosaurs were embedded within each other and the "rock" like one giant archaeological excavation. Unlike the dinosaur, this species doesn't look like it will ever become extinct.

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