There isn't anything quite like watching one of your favorite musicians perform live.
No matter your age, or what kind of music you’re into, the experience is unbelievably gratifying from anywhere in the room.
You're surrounded by the flashing lights, the pounding speakers and the room full of people screaming out the same lyrics as you.
It's intoxicating, and it's one of the best ways to spend your time and money.
But when you hit a certain age, you realize some of the energy you used to bring to concerts in your teens has faded.
The room fills up with a new generation with Xs on their hands, instead of that plastic wristband you so proudly display.
You scoff because these people are more familiar with this artist's newer stuff than the albums that came out 10 years ago.
You wonder where the time has gone, and whether or not you’ve become the old one in the room.
Here are five ways to tell you most definitely have:
1. You're willing to pay more than $15 for a show.
All those bands you loved 10 years ago are much bigger now, or they've broken up and are touring purely for nostalgia's sake (translation: $$$).
The idea of seeking out newer and younger bands is exhausting compared to recapturing the way you felt when you were a teenager, and those tickets don't come cheap.
But you have a job with a salary now, or at least you have one with an hourly rate in the double digits.
Seeing what you want, when you want becomes worth more than the $20 bill you used to wrangle from your parents to buy tickets and merch.
2. You show up just in time to see the band you like.
In your teens, music was a competition.
Nothing was better than knowing and having seen more bands than your friends had, and seeing a new band before they blew up was a badge of honor (especially when you’d have to pretend to hate them once their music videos dropped on MTV).
But now, you work all day, and you'd rather stop home for a cheap dinner than listen to some unpracticed local act beg you to follow them on Twitter.
You hated this plea for support in high school, and you like it even less now.
3. You stand closer to the bar than the stage.
This is a no-brainer because you're finally old enough to drink.
You walk into the venue, flash your ID, don your green wristband and bee-line for the bar to buy an overpriced Bud Light.
Sure, seeing the beads of sweat on the lead singer's forehead is cool and all, but getting comfortably drunk is more fun.
Plus, this way, you can avoid the inevitable and poorly timed mosh pit that starts during your favorite slow jam.
If you hang back, there'll be less beer spilled on your shoes (well, at least less spilled beer by other people).
4. The sight of a crowd surfer makes your blood boil.
Sometimes, you decide being in the crowd is worth it, though, and when you do, you’ll want to enjoy yourself.
Hell, you might even want to mosh for the first time in months (or years).
That's why, when that skinny teenager kicks your head for the 16th time during a song too slow to call for it, you pray he gets dropped and dodge out of the way, instead of helping hold him up.
That sneaker to the head is a bruise in the morning, not the sign of a good time, regardless of what anyone thinks.
5. You're not there at all.
There was a time in your life you’d drive multiple hours every weekend to catch your favorite band.
You’d watch them play the same set in three different states, just to say you could.
Now, you have work tomorrow, you’re far too tired and paying rent puts a big dent in your bank account.
So when you see the announcement your favorite band is playing at a venue 20 minutes from your house, you’ll be presented with a choice: Netflix and a nice dinner, or a pair of tickets and the McDonald’s Dollar Menu?
You know you'll choose Netflix, and sometimes, that's nothing to be ashamed of.