Thursday, July 5, 2012

4th of July, Heat, and Patriotism

So, I've survived another 4th of July in Chicago. I don't get how the whole city isn't consumed in fire with the crazy amounts of fireworks going off all night. Two years ago, my friend Kassi was sitting on a porch gesturing with an open hand when a used firework landed right in it. You couldn't have planned it. So, as the smell of phosphorous begins to dissolve in the atmosphere (which I can't imagine is helping any global warming initiatives), I thought I would update my blog!

First things first. This Chicago weather is absolutely unmanageable, unchristian, and unamerican. No one should have to live with this heat and humidity. I went for a run at 9:30 on Monday evening and thought I was going to drown halfway through. I felt like I should implant gills halfway down my throat to get at the oxygen that was eluding me. Also, the lack of air conditioning in the church is making for an interesting Sunday worship experience. I'm going to have to start wearing sweatbands like a punk bassist so my hands don't slip right off the keys. Although my guilt-ridden, firebrand sermon style seems to really work in this heat!

Anyway, back to the 4th of July. I recently posted about how the olympics were one of the times I became irrationally patriotic. That's not quite true. Here are several other things that do the trick (again, I'm not saying it's rational):
1. West Wing
2. Fireworks synchronized to music

3. A good John Phillip Sousa march
4. The president's speech in Independence Day

5. A good outdoor baseball game when the weather doesn't make you think the game is taking place on the shores of the river Styx (umped by Charon)
6. Footage from Obama's election party in Grant Park
7. The 1980 miracle on ice... "Do you believe in miracles?!"

8. When people try to make the U.S. a more just, compassionate, and merciful place that welcomes and stands with the marginalized and oppressed, you know, the "your tired, your poor, your huddled masses"...even when it means getting labeled unpatriotic
9. Ray Charles' version of "America, the Beautiful," especially when it is played in The Sandlot

10. Protest folk music (i.e. Bob Dylan, Woody Guthrie, Pete Seeger, Peter, Paul, and Mary, Phil Ochs, etc)

I think that's my list. I could make a list of things that are considered patriotic that I do not consider patriotic, but I'll give my cynicism a rest for the day. So, I hope everyone had a fun and safe 4th of July. If you need me, I will be bunkered in my air conditioned apartment. Later!


  1. Well done sir. The speech from Independence Day always makes me stand and applaud.

  2. We definitely watched the boston pops fireworks display on tv this year. I'm pretty sure I mentioned to Peter atleast 15 times how unreal it is that they can time the fireworks with the music

  3. Next year you can see it live in Boston! I went once a few years ago and it was amazing! Makes me want to dust off my clarinet. Okay, that may be a bit much..