All this happened the week before Thanksgiving when I was too busy to post. That pre-Thanksgiving weekend was bracketed by dinners with two different close friends. One I met for dinner downtown, and one cooked for me at her home. Both involved good food, wine and hours of talking.
And the night before that weekend, the boyfriend took me to an event
at the old theater downtown that involved a film screening for a documentary. I was happy for an opportunity to wear a killer LBD and heels. And even more happy when he saw me and said, "Oooh! How lucky a guy am I?!"
Okay, this speaker is white, but not that
white. You'll have to take my word for this being Stan Brock
, one of the co-hosts on"Wild Kingdom." I grew up with that show - remember Marlin Perkins? Anyway, Brock started a program called Remote Area Medical to bring free medical and dental care to needy areas around the world, including Appalachia. The boyfriend had been invited because he volunteers with RAM.
The Wind Orchestra played before the film screening. An odd mix of songs, including a patriotic set that included the official songs of the branches of the military. When they played the Lee Greenwood song, "God Bless the USA" (You know the one, "I'm proud to be an American where as least I know I'm free"
), the giddy conductor told us that when the singer got to "and I'd gladly stand up next to you and defend her still today,"
we were to stand up and sing along.
Well, no. First of all, I absolutely loathe that song. It's the sort of over-wrought patriotism that gives me the heebies. I love my country in spite of all our flaws, but I don't like the suggestion that it has some sort of special in with God not available to other countries. And secondly, I don't want someone telling me when or how to have an emotional reaction to something. So I sat in my seat while everyone else leapt to their feet on command. The boyfriend stayed seated with me, both amused and bemused by my knee-jerk stubbornness.
But there was a guy who came on stage with a bald eagle during the National Anthem. So, yeah. We had that going for us.
And finally, on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving, he came to my house to spend the night before we both headed out of town to visit our respective families.
We woke up to this, an early first snow for this area. Magic.
RAM sounds like a great organization. My son's HS marching band did the different songs for every branch of military thing once per year. They asked those who served in those branches to stand. I thought it was a nice way to honor them.ReplyDelete
I agree with you, though, on being forced to stand in an emotional display. It's weird and uncomfortable.
They did that thing, too, with the different branches standing. I was fine with that.Delete
ha. ok, sounds like a fun time...i struggle at times with forced patriotism...the eagle was a nice touch...i may have stood to honor those willing to serve...tough call...but contrived emotional moments rather suck...ReplyDelete
oo snow...we got a dusting...and it was gone th next day...no sledding...blah!
We weren't asked to stand for that reason - that happened in the medley of military songs. It was just to show our patriotism in general.Delete
Our snow wasn't much, but it covered enough to look beautiful.
I'm with you on the over-wrought patriotism and the emotional manipulation. I hate that sort of obligatory audience involvement altogether. Please can I just sit and enjoy the show and have whatever reactions I fancy, without having to fit into someone else's agenda?ReplyDelete
It kind of reminded me of public school events where they tell everyone to bow their head to pray. I have never liked peer pressure.Delete
" I grew up with that show - remember Marlin Perkins?"ReplyDelete
Yes...in fact, I used to watch that show!
"The boyfriend stayed seated with me, both amused and bemused by my knee-jerk stubbornness."
HA! You and I are SUCH Libras because I'm the same way. I don't like being obligated to feel certain things that seem contrived. Sometimes when I would go to the theater to see a show, the audience would give a standing ovation at the conclusion, when I sincerely didn't feel the same way, so I would sit.
That last photograph of the snow is STUNNING. Yup...magical!
That show started in 1963 and I used to love it.Delete
I have a serious "you're not the boss of me" reaction to things! :-)
That kind of forced emotion annoys me, too. I went to see a band recently that did a lot of that "When we do (x) you (y)" stuff. I found it just as annoying, though I still enjoyed the music.ReplyDelete
I don't like that either - like when they tell you to clap or wave your arms in the air or shout out a certain response. Nope, nope, and nope.Delete
They even had us pretending to ride ponies. Ok, that was kind of fun, but still.Delete
Your posts like this one give me a sense of how strong-willed you are. It's a useful quality to have at times. I do think it's one that surprises people.ReplyDelete
LBD - I don't think I've ever heard of a big black dress talked about the same way.
Maybe people expect me to be more complaint because I'm small?Delete
A big black dress - that's a funny image. Makes me think of a burqa.
How interesting! Wild Kingdom was a Sunday evening ritual when I was a kid. Also, with you on that song. Ugh.ReplyDelete
I'm glad to hear your boyfriend feels lucky...as well he should!
Makes sense, since we''re the same age!Delete
I feel lucky, too.
We're something like 15" of snow into a storm that's supposed to hang around another 36 hours, so I really like knowing that you've had snow--puts us on something like the same page!ReplyDelete
"I absolutely loathe that song. It's the sort of over-wrought patriotism that gives me the heebies. I love my country in spite of all our flaws, but I don't like the suggestion that it has some sort of special in with God not available to other countries. And secondly, I don't want someone telling me when or how to have an emotional reaction to something."
As an avowed seat sitter, I adore you.
Ha ha! Well, if the dusting we had helps...Delete
Thank you! Judging from the comments, a number of people don't like being urged to stand.
A part of your post reminds me of that scene in Casablanca where they are singing about the Fatherland. Seen it, oh, maybe 50 times, and it still gives me the creeps. Forced patriotism is too like fascism for my taste. Goodonya!ReplyDelete
Just the word "Fatherland" gives me the creeps!Delete
That is a pretty picture of the snow; always liked that first snow of the winter and the March shows, weren't crazy about the January ones though :)ReplyDelete
Sounds like a fun evening with the event. I have to say I probably wouldn't have stood either to sing the song. I tend to be one of a handful that doesn't always stand for standing ovations for people.
I do remember growing up watching the Wild Kingdom; it was always fascinating what was on it. I would have enjoyed seeing the eagle!
The first snow of winter is always lovely. But I am ready to be completely done with it by February!ReplyDelete
I found myself wondering how the eagle felt about being hauled out to listen to the music.
Happy for you! Your life sounds excitingly wonderful and magical today :)ReplyDelete
I am with you - I absolutely loathe, perhaps even abhor, that damned song. I am now a faithful follower of your blog solely because of that!ReplyDelete
Totally in agreement. I will not be told by anyone when and how to jump to attention, for whatever reason.ReplyDelete
And emotional expenditure is mine to give, not yours to demand.
I presume he had the eagle tethered? :0ReplyDelete
The snow looks lovely.
Your first snow is absolutely beautiful. Reminds me of childhood.ReplyDelete
I'm too worn out to answer individually, but I appreciate the comments. Back to my old form after the weekend, I hope!ReplyDelete