Drum corps folks are a special breed of people. Like Carnies. We all have some sort of downs-y gene in there somewhere that makes us actually enjoy this brutal, soul-crushing activity.
We are also a filthy, filthy bunch.
No subject is too taboo or off limits. There is no shame or embarrassment or modesty. Or censoring.
I mean, we freely talk and joke about syncing menstrual cycles, morning boners, prolapsed anuses, gargling with semen… Whatever.
All bodily functions are readily acknowledged and shrugged off. Pooping is a major discussion topic as stalls are at a premium and we don’t allow pooping on the buses.
Imagine a drum corps weekend being one, long in-joke, where the goal is to continually shock, awe and “one up” each other.
I told a girl in the guard that she shouldn’t be surprised if she woke up on the bus to find me with some of her hair wrapped around my thumb which I would be sucking.
Yeah, she was creeped out. But in a good way.
This is because we basically eat, sleep, fart, belch, shower and shit all within the same tiny confines. Much like a family. And we practice outdoors in the heat of summer with the barest minimum amount of clothing that is legal.
Much like an incestuous West Virginian family.
One season in drum corps and any shred of modesty you may have remaining is stripped away. For instance, if you are a shy pooper, you learn to drop the kids while there is a line outside waiting to be next while they yell at you to hurry up and stop “poop jacking”. Or they might offer you a blumpkin.
Shit like that.
I mean, hell. We run around in out underwear before shows and stand in line naked with our horns waiting for showers to open up in the inevitably overcrowded facilities.
But it is really liberating, in a way. You get to ditch all the usual social mores and folkways, and become part of this odd, little subculture. At least for a little while.
And let me tell you, it makes for fun rounds of “Cards Against Humanity”.