This I Believe

Kelly - Hagerstown, Maryland
Entered on May 10, 2006

I am a kande raver and I believe in the rave credo of PLUR: Peace, Love, Unity, Respect.

Raves are underground parties, distinct from any other ordinary party or spiritual ceremony. The venue is often a club, open outdoor area, or abandoned warehouse. The focal point of the event is the DJ, who combines or “spins” records of Electronic Dance Music (EDM). Without EDM, there is no rave. The music touches, inspires, transforms and motivates us. EDM is what keeps us dancing, literally and metaphorically. Many ravers liken the deep, rhythmic beats of the music to that of their heartbeats and feel EDM embodies their emotions fully, especially when words cannot.

While the DJ is spinning, those attending the rave, or “ravers,” usually dance, perform tricks with glow sticks, and talk to new and old friends. The youth in motion reach a higher consciousness through the love expressed in their dancing and actions. Many ravers compare their experiences to church services as they attend parties in order to fulfill spiritual needs through music and fellowship.

I am a kande raver. Kande ravers live, breathe, eat, and sleep PLUR. We feel compelled to spread our joyfulness to everyone. If someone is down, the kande raver takes action to bring that person back up. We are easily identified by our nonstop smiles and bubbly personalities. We are often spotted with stuffed animals, bags in the shape of cartoon characters, neat little trinkets, bubble gum, and stickers. The purpose of these toys is to remind ravers of the simple happiness that children are indulgent to. Adults can tap into this level of joy, too, as kande ravers’ toys remind us.

The primary method joy spreading that we use is kande itself. Kande is a form of jewelry, crafted using beads of many colors, shapes, and sizes. We can be seen wearing dozens of bright beaded bracelets up our arms. These are traded with friends, given to someone when we first meet, or offered to a person who looks particularly glum to help cheer him or her up. Once you have received a piece of kande from a new friend, your acceptance of this gift shows that you will remember the kande raver who gave it to you forever.

I am a kande raver and I believe wholeheartedly in PLUR. Flashback to hearing DJ Sirius spin for the first time in Pittsburgh; group hug with Paul Gay and the other kande ravers; meeting the other DJ DVS; waving my glowy lollipop that my sister gave me for Valentine’s Day and when you push the button it says stupid cupid; making 19 new friends with the bracelets to prove it; everybody laughing at the ridiculous booty dance I just made up; calling out DJ Matt Cox for holding up the line to get in and giving him my last $15 without thinking twice. We hope this vibe will last forever. Don’t worry. It will.