A night to remember

 Who’s ready for an epic journey into the lives of five lads in the boy band of the century, One Direction?! Well, if you want that kind of journey then go rent their movie because this blog post is not going to be very helpful for you… In reality I’m going talk about their kick-ass Chicago concerts! I know I was a bit deceiving at the beginning. You probably thought you were going get some inside scoop on the type of cologne the guys wear or something, but let’s be real, their concerts are much more interesting than that.

            If you’ve been to one of their concert you know that it’s an unforgettable experience and not one night of the tour is like another. It’s like when you hit one of the item boxes in Mario Kart. You never know what item you are going to get, but you know that no matter what item it is you can be sure that it is going to emotionally scar someone around you. Every time I play Mario Kart I know I feel my blood pumping through my veins and my excitement building when I get a red shell, and that is just like how it feels when you “think” Niall is looking directly at you in a crowd of thousands of screaming fans. It’s a thrill ride all on its own.

            Before I start I should clarify that I am 21 years old and my primary focus was quite literally to never take my eyes off of Niall Horan. He’s a work of art, what can I say? Both bubbly, energetic personality and brilliant blue eyes stole my heart over those two nights.

            The first night happened to be the wonderful and handsome Liam Payne’s Birthday, so that was a good distraction from the Irish ball of sunshine for a couple hours. The night was all about Liam and it was everything I had hoped for. I would say probably 80% of the posters in the crowd were telling him happy birthday and all of the boys made mention of it in their speeches. It was so sweet! His parents and girlfriend were even in the crowd that night to celebrate along with him. I had no idea they were there until Harry graciously made mention to the fact that Mr. and Mrs. Payne “did the dirty 21 years ago today” and pointed them out in the crowd for everyone to see. Their embarrassment was the most memorable moment of the night. The whole crowd singing “Happy Birthday” to the birthday boy closely followed this intimate moment. His smile lit up the stadium. He looked so happy. My dad came to drop me off but didn’t attend the concert (he went to the jazz festival instead) and he said he could hear us clearly singing it to Liam from outside the gates. Now if that’s not love, I don’t know what is.
Along with getting the gift of no rain and a cool breeze, Liam also received a few gifts from the crowd that were quite lovely. A pizza hat, pineapple hat, crown, and batman stuffed bear were only a few of things I saw him with that night. I don’t know if the strangely large amount of hats I saw on stage were a sign that people weren’t so fond of his hair cut, but I’m going to assume it was just a coincidence because he looked lovely that night.

Now, many more things happened the first night than I mentioned, but nothing was more important than Liam so I’m not going to bore you with the rest of the details.

The second day was a big day for One Direction’s opening act, 5 Seconds of Summer. I love 5SOS almost as much as I love 1D, so you can be sure that I was rocking out just as hard for them. The reason this night was so special was that they sung their song “Long Way Home” for the first time on stage that night. That song is my favorite off their album so I was incredibly excited and you could feel that excitement radiating through the crowd as well. Not everyone in the crowd knew them or their music, but they still got the crowd up on their feet and singing along with a couple cover songs in the mix. They sung both “Teenage Dream” and “What I Like About You”. I have never seen a grown woman in her 40s get up out of her seat as fast as I did that night. I kid you not, when “What I Like About You” started playing she shot up out of her seat with beer in hand ready to get her groove on. This may have happened on the first night, but we’re going to pretend it was night two to keep things organized. To distract you from my deceit here are some of the pictures of the punk rockers themselves…

Before I continue on and talk about the main event and I do remember one other moment from day one that might interest you. Part way through the concert, a couple girls and their moms refused to go back and sit in their row and instead stood in the aisle (I was the aisle seat in the section next to them). I was perplexed! I saw no puke, nobody fainted, and everything looked all well and good. It wasn’t until a security guard came over that things got a little too spicy up in the 200s. The guard kept arguing with one of the moms still standing in the row about what seemed like spilled beer. She ruthlessly stood her ground so he asked her and her other mom friends to leave. As the guard was taking her away, she yelled one last time at the mom standing in the aisle and took a swing at her head. I don’t condone violence, but I was very entertained. She apparently took this game of Mario Kart a bit too seriously. She was not going let that other woman take the lead with a blue shell, but all she had to back her up were a couple green shells and we all know how useless those things are.
            Now back to the boys. I think my camera had a bit of a thing for Louis because I tried so hard to get decent pictures of all the boys but most of my good ones were all Louis Tomlinson. Not that I’m complaining because he always looks ruggedly handsome and he had killer vocals that night.

Zayn, on the other hand, is like a hidden gem. It was always so hard to find him on stage to take a picture when he wasn’t singing a solo because he is more serious about his singing and didn’t goof off as much as the other boys. His voice was on point as usual. If there is one thing that you take away from this story, it should be how seriously amazing his vocal range is. His high notes will take your breath away even faster in concert than when you listen to them at home on CD.

The thing I looked forward to the most at the concert was Harry eating a banana. That doesn’t sound like a thrill but when you see it on tumblr for months and then don’t see it at the first concert, you get a little testy. Thankfully I witnessed it for myself the second day and I was not disappointed. For some reason, I find the fact that they will eat food on stage and basically do whatever they want very refreshing and I live for it.
Harry’s charm and charisma didn’t stop there. This is the concert that will go down in history as the concert that they brought a cute little girl with a cast on stage with them. It was just as cute as you might imagine. Harry requested that she come on stage so he could sign her cast and immediately the rest of the boys made their way down to sign it as well. Harry asked if she knew any jokes and sadly she didn’t…Liam was so sweet with her and Louis even asked her if it still hurt so that he didn’t put her in pain while signing it. Niall wasn’t so sympathetic and ended up just mocking the way she said “what” before signing her cast, but it was cute not mean. YouTube it if you have to, it was hilarious. I have never been so jealous of a little girl in my life, but they could not have picked a nicer kid to bring on stage. You go Caroline! And in the words of Harry Styles “Damn you, funhouse!”

As much of a goofball as harry is, his voice was just as spectacular. He had a good mix of silly and serious rocker those nights.

I saved Niall for last because there’s something special about that kid to me. In all of his speeches he spoke from the heart and nothing sounded rehearsed. You could see how focused and intense he got when he had the guitar in his hand. It’s hard to sing, entertain the crowd, and play the guitar at the same time, but he does it so well. The way he looked at the crowd and smiled showed how much he appreciated every single person that was there. On a less serious note, his hair looked luscious and when he laughed I think my soul left my body. If you haven’t heard his laugh or seen the smile he makes when he laughs, you need to reconsider what you are doing with your free time.

To finish things up, I’d like to mention how incredible their stage was. No words can describe it…

For those of you who soldiered through and read until the end I really appreciate it. I hope every single fan gets to see their idols in concert some day because the way I described those two nights does not fully encompass the experience. I hope to see you all back here when I start posting about crafts and stuff, because you know I’ll miss you!

Sarah is a 21-year-old sculpture major at Bradley University who enjoys art, animals, geekery, music, and a good cuddle. She may be long winded in text, but in life she’s a bit shy at first. She’ll be around every so often with crafts and life events so stay tuned for another trip into the unknown.

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