randomduck

thoughtful. entertaining. random.

Month: August 2009

woodstock at 40: yup, it happened.

No, I wasn’t there. I’m not that old! 😉

What can I say? It happened and there was a lot of good music, a lot of questionable sanitation, and not a lot of chaos. Let’s just sum it up with my favorite tributes to the show:

Slappy the Squirrel asks…

And here’s the band Slappy and Skippy refer to in the bit (not The Band – they play later on):

Sure, there were plenty of other great acts there: Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, CSNY, The Band, Joan Baez, Richie Havens, Arlo Guthrie, Sly and the Family Stone, The Jefferson Airplane, The Grateful Dead and many, many others. It was groundbreaking (in more ways than one, because the damage inflicted on Max Yasgur’s land made it non-arable for years and forced him to sell the property a few years after Woodstock).

It brought forth wonderful music festivals for future generations (e.g. Lollapalooza, Bonnaroo, Coachella, and the Falcon Ridge Folk Festival, to name but a few) and kept still others alive (e.g. Newport Folk Festival, Philadelphia Folk Festival). And it spawned anniversary shows that were of dubious merit, but still rang true for many (at least the one in 1994 – I can’t say that the 1999 or 2004 gigs were nearly as well-received).

So this weekend, why not spin up some good tunes and think of everywhere music has gone since the summer of 1969.

fight like susan

This should be a pithy post about recent cycling adventures and reflections about my life, but it isn’t.

That’s because of Susan Nelson, who died tonight after a long, courageous battle with cancer. Her husband, Elden (the “Fat Cyclist”), and other family members were with her as she passed.

Elden has kept his extended internet family up to date with Susan’s fight: the lows, the highs, the frustrations and lessons learned. Like most of his internet family, I’ve never formally met the man, but he’s a part of my life. His blog morphed from a cycling journal full of humor to a life journal that taught a lot of good life lessons, often with a touch of humor.

As Elden says, Susan didn’t lose. She fought. She inspired many to try and be something bigger and better than themselves, to not let the little things drag you down, to persevere even when the odds weren’t in your favor.

Like many before her, Susan was – and will remain – a hero.

As will Elden. He vows to fight cancer ever harder in the wake of Susan’s death. She wouldn’t want it any other way, nor would Elden’s family and friends.

So thank you, Susan, for showing courage under fire and showing what true bravery is. And thank you, Elden, for taking us along, showing us another form of true bravery, and for vowing to keep up the fight.

Just like Susan did, to the very end.

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