Beyoncé and Jay Z: On the Run Tour Experience
Sprinting down the highway in 85-degree weather and long black pants, I remind myself that "a little sweat ain't never hurt nobody."At this point, only sheer willpower and the words of Queen Bey drive me forward.My friends and I race past hundreds of cars stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic.We haven't eaten since breakfast, and we're running on fumes.The very real possibility of missing the concert is more upsetting than sitting in 5 hours of traffic, making 4 wrong turns, driving 3 miles up the shoulder, having 2 people flip us off and seeing1friend pee in a water bottle.
We pass another full parking lot and watch a woman curse out a security guard. Beyoncé is onstage and people are getting impatient. I worry about what will happen if our car gets towed from the roadside diner parking lot, but I realize a tow truck could never make it through the traffic in time.Other fans start to run alongside us. People encourage, taunt and film us from their cars. I curse myself for not wearingmy running shoes. I begin to feel the skin ripping off the bottoms of my feet when two of my friends yell back "only one half mile to go!"
We can see the stadium and begin to hear the booming beats of "Baby Boy." Policemen direct the traffic of frantic pedestrians and aggressive cars. I see young women hurling themselves over a tall spiked metal gate into the parking lot. We avoid potential abdominal impalement, and slip through a gap in the fence. The beautifully ominous "Haunted" reverberates off of the cars. It gives me goosebumps.We finally arrive, and I apologize to the security guard who has to pat down my sweaty back. She seems to get it.
Sadly we missed almost half of the concert. It was still worth it. The power couple's performances were spliced with video clips of them in a Bonnie and Clyde-esque love story that warned, "This is not real life". Jay Z's hits got the crowd bumping, while Beyoncé mesmerized with her singing and dancing.She executed every note and dance move while simultaneously charming the audience. But the most powerful moments were when B and J graced the stage together. The audience was completely captivated by the notoriously private romance.Every small display of affection in duets like "Drunk in Love" would warrant a huge cheer from the crowd.
Courtesy of Lydie McKenzie
One segment of the concert suggested some trouble in superstar paradise. Beyoncé's emotional rendition of "Resentment" was the only thing that could stop me from grinning. She had tears in her eyes during the amazing performance about infidelity. She notably changed the lyrics to how long she and Jay Z have been together. It was a lot of mixed signals about the status of their relationship, but the majority of the stadium was definitely on team Beyoncé.
A voiceover from The Queen stated that "Forgiveness is the ultimate act of love.” She evoked Michael Jackson in a performance of “Love on Top.” Good acting? Maybe.I'm a romantic and I’ll continue to “beylieve" in the fairytale.
"This is real life" flicked across the screen. Videos of their happy home life played, while 60,000 fans lit up the entire football stadium. The finale brought grown men to tears. I couldn’t cry because I was still uncontrollably smiling from adrenaline and awe.
Courtesy ofLydie McKenzie