Monday, September 1, 2008

Willie wowed 'em.

Willie Nelson performed for about two hours, and the People Productions and the Dimmick Ranch never looked better.

I'll start with the rumors, then move into the things that I saw. The rumors were; that it was difficult to get into the venue due to all of the traffic. There was also a rumor that the venue filled up, and people had to be turned away, and weren't too happy. I don't know because I went down early.

I found a good place out front, and sat up our chairs where we would have a nice place to sit and watch the bands play. I was very impressed with the foresight of the promoters. The right side of the viewing area was set up for “seated guests only!” and the left side was open for standing, dancing, cutting up, and other concert type fun. I really appreciated the fact that you could just sit comfortably and see great. That is until the dancing, boogieing, cut up yahoos on the left side figured out that; “Hey if we just squeeze out front of the seated people we can see real good”. There was screaming from the crowd; “Down in front” which was deafly ignored, and of course there was no enforcement. So, the some of the elderly folks that had come to see Willie Nelson got to watch some unknown chick’s wiggling ass. Which is not a bad trade-off if you think about it.

It became apparent that the venders were way, way understaffed. I went for a buffalo cheeseburger, thirty-five minutes of waiting in line I had a delicious, burger in my hands. The “Save The Schools” foundation ran the booth as a fundraiser. They worked their butts of making cheeseburgers, and if they only had just a little bit more help, they could have doubled their profits, because the crowd was willing.

There was long miserable lines at every booth. I’m not sure if they had just underestimated the crowd that showed up, or the vendors were understaffed, but next time I go down there, I’m going to bring a pocket full of granola bars. I don’t abide lines well, I start getting that “I feel like a sheep, wasting my life waiting for someone else” feeling.

Now, on to good things. People Productions, true to their promise that they would kick-in one dollar of every ticket sold to the “Southern Humboldt Technical Rescue Team“, came through on their promise, which theoretically should have raised about four thousand dollars for our local rescue squad, but due to the squads need, and P.P.'s generosity, they donated TEN THOUSAND DOLLARS!

The Technical Rescue Squad does difficult rescue, like over the bank and difficult access rescues, swift water rescues, and rescues that are beyond the capabilities of the regular first responders. Ten years ago… okay twenty… I would have loved to have been on the squad. But, having a problem with my teeth getting way to long, I might just hold them back. They also "Passed The Jar” in the crowd, and I saw some big donations going into it. So, I see some much needed equipment showing up on the squad soon. I have worked with all of these folks, and all of the local fire departments are trained to assist them. Hopefully, some time in the future they can do some demonstrations of their skills, so the public can see how valuable they are to our area.

Oh… Back to the concert. They opened with the Delta Nationals. Due to their large “bag of songs that they do” to choose from, and their large range of talent, they were able to skillfully entertain the gathering crowd. They were a good group to start with, and really put the crowd in the mood for a party. They must have had some groupies show-up with them because I noticed a few people in the crowd singing along with all of their songs.

The DN’s were followed by The Human Revolution, and Pricilla Ahn. Due to my propensity to “converse”, (my wife doesn’t like me to use words like “bullshit” on my blog, so I won‘t). But anyway, I missed much of their music. My wife said that I missed some awfully good music and social commentary. She doesn’t like to “converse” as much as i do or I would get her to write a review. So, I guess that I will just have to apologize to those folks who's songs I missed.

But, while I was missing songs, I got to see Tom Allman again. I asked him if he saw what I wrote about him on my blog, and he said yes he did, and he went on to prove that he was much better at quoting me than I am at quoting him. Some people are such sticklers about accuracy!

I saw Estelle Fennell and Kathleen, I got to buy Roy Heider a Buffalo Burger. I formed new life-long friendships while waiting in lines. I got to visit with all of my “Beer Camp” friends. I got to say hello to my firefighter friends. I put a dollar in their jar just to piss them off. (I put more in later while they weren’t looking, I didn‘t want to ruin my image as a tightwad.)

I ran in to my cousin “Oregon’s” daughter and her new boyfriend.

I got to get a first hand report from some crazy people that went to Burning man. Howard Phun thought that it was real Phunny that everybody was mistaking him for Willie Nelson. I told him that Willie Looks much younger. He didn’t think that was Phunny!

Oh yeah! I ran into Ekovox and Ladyfriend at the concert. I got to say hello to them before the concert, and we agreed to meet up later. We saw each other in the crowd several times after that, we were both busy being like ships in the night. Ladyfriend helped me re-arrange my armload of buffalo burgers, so I wouldn’t get so much catsup and mustard on my shirt. We decided that the “Bloggers picnic” would be fun, and that we would have more time to talk.

Oh... Willie Nelson was Willie Nelson. What the hell else can you say about Willie Nelson? Who else could draw a crowd like that?

“Mommas don’t let your Cowboys Grow up to be Babies”


Kym said...

I didn't see you but I had a wonderful time also.

The parking problems were really nasty but I didn't see any accidents which is the main thing.

I loved the wonderful mixture of people mingling without melting into sameness. Humboldt is wonderfully diverse.

Ernie Branscomb said...

Sorry that I missed you Kym, It seems like everybody that I know was there. In all of my life, I've never seen such a co-mingling of ten-gallon hats, pie-plate belt buckles, and pointy-toed boots with dreadlocks, and tie-die, and Birkenstocks. Like P.B. said “this only proves that rednecks and hippies can get along.”

Tapperass said...

It was too bad there was no remote parking, like up at the Benbow Exit. My Shuttle Bus was only filled to capacity a couple of times throughout the night. However, the traffic was a sight.

Anonymous said...

This was a fun post to read Ernie, as usual you make things interesting. I hope you have some pictures to add.
Maybe the next time you have a big outdoor shindig down there they will be cooking up some moose burgers. Like Sarah says, "eat moose, 7,000 wolves can't be wrong".
I wish now I had been there so I could have bullshitted with Janice since I missed her at mid-August.


Ernie Branscomb said...

I got a few photo's, but I just got my new camera a couple of weeks ago, and I haven't got around to reading the instruction manual yet. I discovered that if you charge the batteries, turn it on, and hold down the top right button, that it takes a picture. It came with a cd that looked like it belonged in a computer, so put it in the cd slot and it started up and after it got through humming It said “Install cable in camera port, and connect to USB. I did that and all of my pictures showed up on my computer.

Someday I will read the instruction manual, but by then I’ll probably know how to run it. I will have learned by my osmosis plan. Besides instructions are for sissies!

Kym said...

Your learning plan sounds like my reality. The camera is fun, reading up on how to use it is not!

"Bob" said...

Ernie, EkoVox told me he saw you at the show and even described what you were wearing so I could try to pick you out of the crowd (fat chance of that) so I could met you.

Anyway, I posted a bunch of photos here:

including some shots of the big check ceremony.

Carol said...

We got there early, so there was no traffic going in to the venue. It took about an hour to get out, but it was fun watching the people!

For some reason, everyone sat down where we sat (center 3rd row), but I could see that every where else people were standing, including where there were chairs.

Too bad you missed Priscilla Ahn, Ernie! She is a talented singer songwriter!

Joel Mielke said...

Thanks for the colorful description of the show for those of us who couldn't make it. Bob's photos were a nice touch.

I agree with the sign; I'd vote for Willie Nelson. Of course Richard Nixon looks pretty good right about now.