Sunday, July 24, 2011


ENTERTAINMENT ISSUE! (or why it can be hard to watch a movie with me!)

Last Saturday I went to the blues concert headlined by Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings at Stinson Park.  The location was changed because of the flooding along the Missouri River and I rode my bike there and hung out beneath the ‘hot, tropical sun’ from 4 p.m until the concert was over at 10:30 p.m!  Again, it was a very convivial atmosphere, with people of all ages, couples and families all together having a good time.

The opening acts were rather pedestrian and of course I am going to comment about the ethnic composition of the crowd.  I wonder if blacks still identify with blues music as the blues receives scant support from the community.  Most of the blues fairs I have gone to in my lifetime have all been attended by a majority white audience and this was no exception, even with such a well-known act headlining a FREE show.

Sharon Jones is a strong performer.  She carries the additional sobriquet of ‘the female James Brown’, given to her because she brings so much energy to her show, and she did not disappoint.  I tried to get a good picture of her but she DOES NOT STAND STILL!  She was all over the place and the crowd in front of the stage fed off of her energy.  Though my bootleg camera did not take a good picture of most of the dancers, the folks did semi-goad me into moving awkwardly with a woman who ‘called me out’ and was enjoying herself.  Even without having any rhythm of my own, I did surrender to the moment, joining in with the other awkward bodies attempting to sway to the music.

Or should I have said the feeling.  That is really what I was doing.  Everyone was having a good time and I went ahead and let myself go with the flow and I had a good time, too!  The ride back was an adrenaline rush too, because I rarely ride through that area of town, even though it is the proverbial stone’s throw away, I was riding ‘thataway’ until I got home.


I have never been a fan of the DC Comic Universe and since I got out of comics just as the fan/geek/nerd culture blew up, I can’t compare it against any other publishing company other than Marvel Comics.  Nebraska came by last night and treated me to a show and there were several issues I had with the movie, 'Captain America: The First Avenger'.

First, it is already being given a ‘pass’ as it is a fantasy retelling of an alternate history that never occurred (at least not in this reality string), and one of the things that makes fantasy believable is how it well it integrates the possible with this reality.  Star Trek, which unlike many of the science fiction entertainment vehicles that predated it, actually PREDICTED technology that was to come after it (or did anyone forget that the space shuttle FIRST appeared on that show and the maiden shuttle was called ‘Enterprise’, in honor of its source of inspiration?).  The communicators and tri-corders are nothing if not the cell phones and I-Pads that are in use today. In short, the science as well as the social constructs on the show that it presaged was the multicultural society that we are moving to today.  UNLIKE the world that was supposedly being portrayed in the movie ‘First Avenger’, which had scenes that had no basis in the social fact of its time.

I am not going to give anymore of a ‘spoiler’(but my man Chauncey is the one who could really ruin the movie for you, if you want!) than that because that isn’t where I am going with this.  But if we are going to gig the Tea Baggers and the viewers of Faux News for play loose with historical facts and making up some history out of whole cloth, then fair is fair, and you have to call bullsh*t wherever it pops up.  Such revision is as dangerous as the make believe history of a Sarah Palin or anyone else of conservative ideology (or religious… this is a blog of the un-Christlike opinions of those who profess to be Christian and/or conservative).  For instance, when I saw Idris Elba cast as Heimdall in the ‘Thor’ movie, I was so like WTF!!  This is the kind of treatment that drives and fuels the philosophical beliefs of supremacist groups.  ‘Multicultural washing’ history does not make it any more true than the teaching of intelligent design over evolutionary theory, and it does as much damage as socially as ‘ID’ does to science.

Putting ‘ethnic-face’ on a few characters is as lazy as a Tea Bag historian and is another step down the slippery slope of the kind of culture controls that my main man George Orwell wrote about… sure, there were other writers who wrote about the bleakness of the future, like Huxley did in ‘Brave New World’.  But for me, ‘1984’ is as accurate as it gets (and don’t get me started on Alvin Toffler!!).  What I used to wonder when I first read the book in the shadows of a world still gripped by the Cold War.  China was still a inefficient, 2nd rate power both economically and industrially, and Europe was… well, it was as it is, beset by internal issues and facing the consequences of governments social commitments to its citizens.  I did not see where the three powers of Eastasia, Eurasia and Oceania began or where the constant wars between the superpowers would be fought.  But I can easily envision the mineral-rich African Continent becoming a battlefield and yes, I got all that from watching the ‘innocent’ re-imagining of history done in ‘Captain America: First Avenger’. 


Well, it is not luxiuous or lazy.  The new medication that I am on is taking a little bit of time for me to get used to, not to mention the added stress of the Debt Ceiling crisis.  In fact, that is part of why I trend on race, as it is something that is more easily understood than the fiction that is the monetary system.  You have got to wonder how long it is going to last and what role it is playing in our ‘have – have not’ societies.

No, I did not weigh down Nebraska with all the stray thoughts I had colliding in my head... saved most of that for the journal!  Anywho, I hope to see you all later (visiting blogs)… unless, that is, I see you first!


Anonymous said...

I think the racial lines of music are blurring much more than they once did; white people are listening to blues, Darius Rucker is winning awards for his Country Music.

That corgi :) said...

One way or another, Mark, hopefully the debt ceiling will resolve itself within this next week and all will start working with each other to put something down on paper they can all agree with. I tend not to let it bother me that much because I'm just thinking in the end it is all going to work itself out.

The concert sounded like a good thing to go to. I admire you for keeping yourself going out to continue to "mingle" in your new city!


Bucko (a.k.a., Ken) said...

The concert sounds great, it always fun to let go and flow.

♥ CG ♥ said...

Hey Mark! Sounds like I need to check out Sharon Jones one of these days. She performs regularly on this end, but I never thought about going. Glad you had a good time!

Jonthy, Alice the uppity white cat's babysitter said...

The debt ceiling problem is enough for all of us to lose sleep over. Especially Medicare, Medicad, and Social Security recipients. I don't know how all this is going to play out but I'm sure things will just get tougher for everyone.

Best thing to do is what you are doing. Enjoy life, music, and friends. Don't watch any news because there is very little good news. Even in Norway.

Toon said...

Capt. America looked boring and silly to me, but I imagine it will be a big hit with "patriots".

Sarcastic Bastard said...

There is a lot to worry about politically and economically in these times. That's for sure.

Love you!

Anonymous said...

I just looking for one person who talks about money, giving it, saving it, spending it, whatevering a governmental sense to at least radiate a teensy bit of honesty. ~Mary

still looking

Beth said...

We're going to a Blues Fest this afternoon/evening! I will pay attention to the makeup of the crowd.

I love Tea Party Jesus! It is a perfect blend of sarcasm and irony. Some of the hateful things that the teabaggers say, coming out of Jesus's mouth. A brilliant concept.

I read Future Shock back in high school, and you've made me want to read it again.