A forester and high culture are two things that don’t seem to jibe.
I imagine when I say I am a forester you assume my culture would be NASCAR, country music, and killin’ animals for sport. That might be true in some cases.
Not this forester. I aspire to explore higher levels of culture.
I thought I would give the opera a try. I heard this Pavarotti fellow had a set of fine tenor pipes, so I thought I would give him a listen. I downloaded “The Best of Pavarotti,” not knowing that this collection would total about 90 songs. After three or four, I decided that the opera was not for me. The man can sing, no doubt, but what is he singing about? Does he know English?
Do you know how long it takes to delete 90 songs? I do.
Then I tried ballet. Now to be completely truthful (which I rarely am in my writing — that’s the “creative” part of “creative non-fiction”), I attended a ballet at the request of a cousin, who I love very much. She has a preteen daughter who is an aspiring ballerina. I love her too.
My first ballet was “Zelda,” which was loosely based on the life of Zelda Fitzgerald.
Very loosely. I know a good bit about Zelda Fitzgerald. I’ve read most of her husband’s novels, and she was from Montgomery, Alabama where I work every day.
I was puzzled. I found it very hard to relate what I saw to what I knew.
The next performance was “The Nutcracker.” It had something to do with Christmas.
This past Sunday I attended “Frida!” This one was about a Mexican communist with a unibrow. I had to “Google” it to learn that much.
It took three puzzling performances to figure it out. This kind of ballet is not about story. It’s about teaching young girls the technique necessary to become ballerinas.
I can relate to that. I have taught quite a few boys how to swing a baseball bat. Perhaps one day I’ll teach one who will develop a swing as sweet as Ken Griffey Jr. It’s a one in a million shot, but it’s worth the effort.
A girl has to start somewhere, and even if you don’t ever make Swan Lake, at the very least it should be worth something to know you had someone who loved you enough to drive a couple of hours to see you try.
I rather like the ballet.