Language lessons

1 03 2010

When I was first introduced to the rave scene I felt like I had just jumped into A Clockwork Orange. Everyone seemed to be speaking in foreign slang that was completely lost on me. Over time I came to understand rave lingo, and it seemed appropriate that my first post should outline where I had to begin in this world. Here are some of those commonly used in rave culture. Maybe they’ll help you out a bit.

PLUR – the fundamental concepts of rave lifestyle, observing the principles of peace, love, unity and respect. PLUR defines the camaraderie between all those involved in rave culture and should ideally follow ravers home after any event.

Kandi – a representation of PLUR, kandi is beaded jewelry made by ravers for friends or to be exchanged at raves. Ranging from simplistic strands to elaborate creations, the gesture of sharing kandi is one unique to the rave scene.

Rolling – a term used to describe the experience of being high on ecstasy, a drug popular in rave culture due to its tendency to induce feelings of love and empathy. Those who roll are often sensitive to being touched and bright lights, which is why massages and light shows are prevalent at raves.

Rave name – an alias of sorts, a rave name is given to a raver by an outside party. Gifted by a friend or a stranger, the name traditionally represents the person’s personality, interests or appearance. From this point on, a raver can introduce themselves by their rave name. Mine is Chameleon, due to my tendency to slide in and out of places and different scenes and sort of blend in. At least that’s what a member of my rave family said when she bestowed it upon me.

Light show – to an outside party, the act of providing a light show looks completely absurd. Imagine an individual sitting on the pavement with their mouth hanging open while someone shines lights mere inches from their face. However, to anyone who may be rolling, the streams from glow sticks or finger lights is mesmerizing.