With a Purpose 

Going to give blogging another shot. What’s different this go round is I am using the info from Blogging U. Actually selling down to receive instruction instead of paying clumsily into things is a lot like reading the manual before disassembly. What!?! 


American Idiot is Another Rocking Triumph for Trustus

 The current offering at Trustus is the musical production of Green Day’s American Idiot.   I hadn’t heard any of the group’s musical output in many tears. Not since my now  forty-year-old son was a teen and played their albums.  But, this did not hinder my enjoyment of this musical.

I had  a vague notion of what I would experience. The Trustus professionals consistently present  first-class and professional work. I have seldom been disappointed over the years that I have attended its productions. They make it easy to approach something new. This is because of the  expectation of quality and hard work by the entire company.

American Idiot is again no exception. The set design incorporates random TV screens hanging around the stage showing news vignettes. The stage is  littered with pieces made to resemble broken pavement, catwalks.  This design may be suggestive of a general aspect of destruction. Perhaps representing  the crumbling of the American Dream. It is a great job of set design and management by Maddie Covert, Baxter Engle, and Rosalind Graverson.

 Against this backdrop of political and social chaos the characters complete their journeys.  from immaturity to self-discovery. Their development from teens to adults puts them through drug addiction, broken dreams, and lost love. These are are the  crises that forge these adults from their untempered childhoods. The whole affair is well directed by Chad Henderson. The music director, Chris Cockrell, delivers a spot on rendition of a rocking score that drives relentlessly, filling the audience with energy.


The principal actors and dancers all deliver energetic and passionate performances. Engaging us as their stories move smoothly from side stage to center stage.     Special kudos to Garett Bright and Michael Hazin for their spectacular and electrifying performances. They anchor this modern story .

If you have not seen this production, make the time and effort this July. It will brighten and energize your summer. Allow Trustus to immerse you in the world of American Idiot.


We Deserve What We Get

As of this week, unless Hillary is indicted or Donald is the recipient of a convention coup, we have our major candidates for the office of President of the United States. What a mess!  Trump, while electrifying, has no experience in running a government. Clinton, as the history draping the name would suggest, has plans to be accountable for any kistakes or perceived wrongdoing. Really, George Kasich and Bernie Sanders would offer a more sensible choice.

Hillary Clinton, for all  the good she has done, seems to have an aversion to authenticity. As she screeches about “fighting for every one of you”, my BS meter pegs, the needle bending under the extreme pressure of so much phoniness. If screeching is unfair because of her gender, because I did not use “thunders”, well that’s the physical difference. Her voice, especially at those levels, bears such a close resemblance to fingernails on a chalkboard, that I inwardly cringe at the unpleasantness. As for the major issues, Benghazi and misuse of federal e-mail accounts, she evaded all efforts to elicit a clear statement on her actions until dogged into a corner. Reminiscent of Bill’s evasive actions with the meaning of it is or whether he “had sex with that woman”, this kind of slippery word play does nothing to make me feel in the least bit comfortable with the candidate. Her attempt to fain naive innocence over accepting money from people she will be asked to control  rang hollow and phony as a $3-dollar bill. As most any candidate will enjoy, she has her fervent followers and defenders; they simply come across as a cult. Elect her because she is a woman, could be the first female American President ? Not a good enough reason. Besides which, first Madame President or not, she will remain a tool of the vested interests, the people who control this country, the people who we claim to disdain and despise. And, yes, all politicians say and do what is expedient. This woman just seems to be the worst sort of liar, one who maintains innocence util forced to admit, and then will not call it a lie, but a “misstatement”, “confusion of the facts”: but remember, she did not come under fire, no more than Brian Williams did. He lost his job as a media spokesperson, but we want to promote The Hill to the greatest seat of worldly power in existence?

Donald Trump seems to have captured the imaginations of a wide swath of the electorate. From different accounts, it seems to me, Trump bridges across class, race, and gender. This, in spite of the constant drumming of The Media that The Donald spells the end of America, that we will sink to the level of a barbaric, hate-filled nation of bigots; that we will be pariahs around the world. This from the same crowd of pundits that sneered at the very idea of a Trump candidacy. True, his blustering and apparent insensitivity is out of step with the crowd that adores not hurting ANYONE’S feelings, pandering to all sides of an issue, of pussy-footing around with no decisive action. Read your history, world history, go back to ancient times – countries, ways of life all have a period of cycling through history. As a dominant force, America may be entering Her sunset – I fervently hope that is not so. I love this country and have sworn to defend it against all enemies, FOREIGN and DOMESTIC, to uphold its values, to respect and participate as a citizen. Like most native-born, I tend to take a lot for granted. That is why its refreshing to encounter a naturalized citizen and see the obvious delight they take in being an American. This delight and repect is what will sustain us as a nation, allow us to weather bad presidents, venal legislatures, and ignorant media. Not an endorsement of Donald Trump; I personally favor The Bern, or even Kasich as better suited to maintaining our greatness as a nation. Sanders exudes the compassion of a great leader and would be able to negotiate with both sides better than either Trump or Clinton. His persona appears more authentic and more in line with majority of this country. The extremists on both sides are the lunatic fringe that would truly damage this country. Our best course as a nation is steady one projecting the quiet strength and determination that we have been known to exhibit. We cannot erase our mistakes in the world political game over the past sixty years, but we can attempt to regain the respect of some and the fear of others.