I am an arts lover and Baby Boomer who attended the Gordon Lightfoot concert at the Clay Center Sept. 17. Having enjoyed his music for decades, I, along with hundreds of others, wanted to pay tribute to him and to recapture lovely memories which his songs engender. Although I didn't expect the same level of performance from his concert in Charleston in 1977, I was deeply disappointed.
From the time he took the stage until I felt compelled to leave at intermission, I experienced a gamut of emotions. They began with shock at his fragile appearance, to embarrassment at his extremely diminished vocal skills, to sadness that the picture of this evening will forever remain in my mind when I think of him.
Ironically, I had a somewhat similar experience at the last Dionne Warwick concert at the Clay Center. Another all-time favorite, she provided the audience a weakened, shortened performance, partially due to her "mature" voice which was exacerbated by her illness that evening.
In both cases, the audience was respectful, but I strongly believe that the cost of our tickets entitled us to more than was delivered. However, I don't begrudge the price which, I suppose, was a tribute to the hours of enjoyment their music has given me over the years.
So, the lesson I've learned is to save my money and to preserve my pleasurable memories, in the future I will be more selective in my choice of "baby boomer" concerts.
Tree-huggers make storms worse
If there's one thing the last two storms taught us, it's that trees near power lines can cause hundreds or thousands to suffer needlessly. Most power outages are caused by trees falling over power lines.
I love trees as much as the next guy, but like people who own dogs or have children, tree owners are responsible for damage to neighbors when they refuse to allow trees to be trimmed back or cut down completely from power lines.
I'm sick of tree-huggers who go so far as to hire lawyers to prevent their offending trees to be trimmed, so that others in the area won't suffer during storms that otherwise might pass safely, had it not been for the tree-huggers.
It's one thing to love trees, quite another to endanger people with your attitude that trees are more important than people's safety.