Showing posts from November, 2008

The Arts

Since my last post, I’ve been thinking about the ways the arts can be found in our culture. Things like paintings hanging in a museum or a sculpture in a park are obvious, and they are the things that quickly get pointed to when someone who is anti-art wants to complain.

Shooting at a big target is easy, the anti-arties can point to Piss Christ, or the painting of the Virgin Mary adorned with elephant dung, declare their outrage, demand that something must be done and conclude that all art is bad, and they will complain bitterly that their precious tax dollars were used to fund such an atrocity.

They don’t understand that part of art is how the viewer interprets it. For every person offended by Piss Christ, there were others who saw something more than a beloved religious icon, a Savior, submerged in urine. Sister Wendy Beckett, an art critic and Catholic nun, stated in a television interview with Bill Moyers that she regarded the work as not blasphemous but a statement on "what…

Here We Go Again

As I mentioned in a previous post, I sometimes check out the St. Paul Pioneer Press and the vitriolic comments that follow each article. I hadn't been there in a while, I got tired of being labeled "clueless" and worse for stating facts and for stating the obvious.

The latest one to draw my ire is an article about the Wallace Foundation giving $7 million to the Minneapolis Saint Paul Arts Community. Money from this foundation will help MacPhail Center for Music, Minneapolis Institute of Arts, The Minnesota Opera, Minnesota Orchestra, Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, Mixed Blood Theatre Company, Northern Clay Center and The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra amongst others.

Here is a sample of the bullshit that comes spewing from the minds of my fellow Minnesotans (complete with original mis-spellings and crap grammar):

Stop your philanthropy now. The citizens of MN are pooling 91 million dollars a year and a good chunk of that will go to the arts! For goodness sakes!


Bye Bye, Baby

I finally got someone to haul away my old Aspire. I got her from George in lieu of a royalty check for Groovitis. She had over 100,000 miles on her and I put on another 90,000 myself.

My favorite trip was at the end of the summer a few years back. I drove her to Appleton, WI for a gig with George. If I remember correctly, he had to go elsewhere the next day and Jeff was gigging in Duluth or something, so I wound up driving myself. The next morning I picked up a copy of the NPR radio theater version of Star Wars on cassette tape, popped the first episode into my tape player and started driving to SOMS in Hibbing.

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I stopped briefly in Cloquet to buy a mug and continued. The final episode finished just as I was driving into the front gate.

Eventually the poor old girl started dying. When it rained or was cold with high humidity her electrical system would fritz out and reset the radio and clock. The headlights stopped working due to an electrical meltdown. The blower…