Thursday, August 28, 2008

Happily Out of Step

Acknowledging both my strange fascination with Irish accents, (I'll explain another day. . .), and my love of history, my dear friend invited me to ride to the historic city of Annapolis, Maryland for some supper and to attend the monthly concert of an Irish singer known for his beautiful Celtic ballads.

Supper was glorious, and afterwards we killed some time before the show by walking around the quaint, capital city, laid out like a wagon wheel from it's hub, the State House. I could have strolled the rest of the night away along that harbor, reveling in the beauty of the lights on the Severn River and soaking up the smells of the waterfront.

Perhaps I should have. Instead, we hurried upstairs to get a good seat for the balladeer's show. The singer seemed nice enough, taking time to greet his audience. We quickly realized he knew most of the crowd . . . his "regulars", at least a large number of whom were fellow performers, thesbians at the Rennaissance Festival.

He began his show by thanking us for coming to his "Country Western Show". Hmmm. . . we thought. This was unexpected. His first few numbers were lively, classic cowboy songs, beloved melodies from a fifty-something's childhood that my husband downloads onto his Iphone. They were sweet and performed in beautiful voice. Between the songs the entertainer would tell a joke or or story, but with each passing ditty, his humor grew more baudy until, encouraged by the crowd, it became detestable.

I wonder what appeal such humor holds for adults who clearly are old enough to have moved beyond the old "National Geographics in the bathroom" phase. Like emotional three-year-olds possessing valid ID's, they drank and hooted over the singer's crude performance while we, crushed into the very front corner, awaited an opportunity to make our exit, only to be heckled on our retreat.

I don't get it. I really don't. I know I haven't been to a live concert since my Donny Osmond days, but is this what adults think is entertaining? Is this indicative of our American maturity and taste? If it is, then I'm honored to be happily out of step.


  1. I've noticed the humor issue at Renn Faires a lot lately. The first year I went, back when I was sixteen, the humor only occasionally touched on baudy *either that or I was just too naive to notice* But the last year I went, about two years ago to the one in MD the humor was nothing but gutter. It rather sucked the fun out of it for me. Sorry your celtic singer turned out to be so crass.
    PS. I love the way you write, sister L. So you. Amusing and insightful all at once.
    Much Love.

    Heather Roberts Halliday

  2. I was sad too because I always wanted to go myself. I saw this old Candid Camera episode where they put three actors in an elevator with a regular person. Whatever they did--turn and face the back, take off their hat, put on their hat-- the other man followed. Our singer was a sheep with a full repretoire of crud, and he followed the herd right into the gutter.

    I was sorry to hear that your mom's back was so bad. Let me nkow if there's any needs over there.

    Love you tons,

    Sister L.