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Location: Portland, Oregon

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Thursday, April 03, 2008

Public Health Heroes, Celebrated

By the by, this was my favorite April Fool's joke this year. I fucking fell for it until right around the point that I saw this:
"Our researchers have concluded that allowing each person more than ten pre-dated emails per year would cause people to lose faith in the accuracy of time, thus rendering the feature useless."

And I felt very, very foolish.

A few days before, I worked at the Springsteen show. His road crew were a bunch of very nice folks (especially the audio guy, 'Boo', who I worked with directly), and the band too just seemed to be having a wonderful time. They were nice and relaxed, knowing full well that they could be; although they weren't lazy about it, either.
It was a victory lap- for a group of people older than myself that I suspect I'd like to party with- of sorts, and yet it's not like Bruce is doing Bruce's Greatest Hits alone; he still writes new stuff...
But truth be told, I noted that he was intending to do 'Rosalita' as part of the encore, and that was what I most wanted to see. I didn't get to. I don't know how: That song is like twenty fucking minutes long.

The crowd was almost entirely people in later middle age, with the exception of about ten women in (I'd say) their twenties wearing home-decorated t-shirts that read, "LESBIANS LOVE BRUCE". He acknowledged them in the middle of the weird, requisite faux-Celtic number he did.

But above all else, there is this unabashed sincerity about the whole thing that somehow utterly fails to make it stupid. The Rose Garden was more packed than I've ever seen it: even the nosebleed seats were full, and that never happens. I mean, Ozzy's fans loved Ozzy every bit as much, but if you asked any of them, they would generally acknowledge that his best work is several decades behind him.
Here with Bruce, you get this feeling of easy competence and still being On It. It might not be my favorite music in the world, but at least it doesn't embarrass me.

He managed to do the 'I'm aware of what city I'm in' number well, too. At some point shortly after introducing the band, he starts yelling the name of our town at the crowd, who respond by saying his name back at him.
Unfortunately, an entire basketball arena full of people yelling 'bruce' sounds a hell of a lot like several thousand people booing, so it went a little something like this:


So it was nice, anyway. I'm going to disappear into that Shoe Manufacturing Concern I occasionally work for, for the next couple of days. Of the next forty-eight hours, I will be working for twenty-two of them.
Best of all, this company, already unpopular for their labor practices in (what I assume is) the past, is doing this celebratory thing for some upcoming world-wide athletic events in the capital of a despotic regime in Asia, this summer. Hated Behemoth, meet Hated Behemoth, in short, not that they haven't already met.

Meanwhile, the banners-hanging-from-lampposts proclaim this time period as being sacred to an overlooked sector of the populace. 'CELEBRATING PUBLIC HEALTH HEROES', they say.
As Bee was wondering the other day, are the people under discussion here The Double Handwashing Guy and the person who came up with the delightful phrase 'wrap that rascal'?

No matter. This will be the most fun you'll have until Greek Heritage Days. Enjoy, and see you soon.



Blogger disco boy said...

oh, bruce knew good and well where he was. in late 1984, ell oh was aflame with bruce sightings. hell, he got married in yonder catholic church, where a coupla few of our old friends were reared. for a long time, the rumor was that he was going to buy "the island" (the small island on the lake where the founder of avia shoes lived for a good long time, the only island on said lake available by bridge...) and settle down and start writing songs about the estacada steamfitters union's troubles.

but, in no time, he started poking the backup singer, and our most famous starfucker was cast aside. from there on, bruce had to have thought of the portland area as "that place where i could've buried my career"

9:31 PM  
Blogger rich bachelor said...

Yeah, one of the people swept up in that particular media circus was our good friend Father O'Sheely, who happened to be walking by. A young person at the time, the reporter must've figured that Tim gave a shit, or something. He didn't, and said as much for the cameras.

I love the deflated look that sort of comment generates on the faces of reporters.

10:22 AM  
Blogger Gregg said...

Too bad that fake "fake" email thing isn't real. I would have sent a message to Dick Nixon circa October 1972 with "I know what you did last summer". Or maybe one to Bruce circa 1984 "Love that nice bootie shot on the cover, Boss. Why didn't you hire Warhol to have a nice surprise inside a la 'Sticky Fingers'?"

1:51 PM  
Blogger rich bachelor said...

I know. I was genuinely disappointed. Although they did point out that one could only use the function during the time period since Gmail has existed.

So I couldn't become my own grandfather or anything, but I could always say, "Oh, that highly coercive stock purchase agreement your father is about to hand you? Don't sign it. Love, Future Me."

11:47 AM  

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