Days of Lore
I was never one for mosh pits. Only occasionally would I venture out into that circle of tangled, sweaty bodies … after assessing the situation first. An emo band like Far: safe; Mudhoney: proceed with caution; the Reverend Horton Heat: jump on in. However, I would never step within 30 feet of a pit full of yolked-out tweakers at a Pantera or Slayer show. Then again, that’s mutha-effin’ Pantera and Slayer we’re talking about. Besides, I’m a weenie … which is another way of saying wiener. OK, I am a wiener.
Caught in a mosh
While it would have been awesome to see the word “moshing” in a potential city ordinance, we weren’t quite so lucky. Instead they’re going with the word “slamming” for the proposed “disorderly event” ordinance that would give police the authority to shut down events where there’s evil-doin’ going on.
The ordinance, given a first reading at the July 3 Chico City Council meeting, would allow cops to shut things down at a gathering where they spot at least three misdemeanors or one felony (can’t they do that already?). This would include, among other things, “rough body contact or ‘slamming’ in which participants collide their bodies into each other,” and “individuals launching themselves from a stage or similar raised platform into a crowd.”
Chico Police Chief Bruce Hagerty said this week that if the ordinance passes it “gives us more leverage to shut down an out-of-control party.” He said currently officers don’t have the ability to shut down a party, unless it’s a second response or violates a noise ordinance, or if it becomes a crime scene. Odd. Hagerty also insisted that it wasn’t in the spirit of the law to use it for shutting down punk rock shows where kids are “slamming.”
Well, that’s comforting.
The proposed ordinance will appear on the consent agenda for final approval at the next City Council meeting, Tues., July 17. Of course, you wouldn’t know that by reading the July 4 article in the Enterprise-Record, where it was reported that the council had already approved the ordinance into the Chico Municipal Code. Ooopsie!
In reality, any member of the public, or councilmember, can have the proposed ordinance pulled from the consent agenda at the July 17 meeting for further discussion.
The idea that cops could have the authority to shut down functions (i.e. rock shows) where kids are getting a little rambunctious has got the proverbial panties of those in the local music community understandably in a wad.
Members of the punk rock community are meeting this week to plan their next move, which is to show up at the City Council chambers to get the disorderly event ordinance pulled from the consent agenda. Those interested in showing their support can meet at the Zombie House/Langolier at 498 Humboldt Ave. tonight (July 12) at 8 p.m. If you want to get involved but can’t make it to the meeting this week, show up at the next City Council meeting Tues., July 17, at 6:30 p.m. SHARP!
Chico Mayor Andy Holcombe said anyone can have the proposed ordinance pulled from the consent agenda, and that if there are enough people opposed to it, he’ll pull it himself. Good guy, that Andy Holcombe.
I still find it difficult to believe cops can’t shut things down if there’s something shady going on. Guess this law is made to make it super-duper easy to shut any party deemed “disorderly.”
The fat what?!
On another note, I went and checked out the Happy Hour at Lost On Main last Friday with The Sin Twisters and the Fat Stickies. ’Twas a good time. Cheap drinks. No cover. Loud rock. Every Friday, 7-9 p.m.