Sunday, August 29, 2010

 

WARN ME IF NERO PULLS-OUT THE FIDDLE!

...With some moments of weakness excepted, I long ago stopped listening to the music of my youth in favour of the alleged sophistication of contemporary jazz.

But, because in the latter half of September I will be attending the 50th anniversary of the campus radio station where my career in the media began, I've recently immersed myself into the music of the sixties. To digress: I spent eight years at Radio UNB / CHSR-FM starting in 1965 as a Disc Jockey/Announcer through to Management until 1973 while in university studying Political Science and subsequently Law.

Thanks to satellite radio and the modern wonder of the Internet I've spent several recent nostalgic hours (days, really!) recapturing the essence of the music of the years when we, the earliest members of the Boomer Generation, engaged "adult" life.

What has been most striking to me on this recent journey into the music, the artists, the poets, and the beat of my decade of innocence, now fifty years hence, is both the simplicity and more importantly the optimism with which we embraced the dawn of our brave new world.

If the human experience is a journey, then five decades later we seem to have failed miserably in achieving even a measure of the lofty optimistic ideals we set-out to establish and conquer. In a half-century we've pillaged the planet and pretty well destroyed the environment we need to survive as a species. The economic legacy we are about to leave behind, perhaps the only remaining tool with which to finance a fix to our mess, lies amongst ruins akin to the demise of the historical civilizations of ancient Greece and of the Roman Empire.

Whether it be from gorging ourselves on a failed real estate banquet, or the escapism pleasures we've sought from Disney-like entertainment; it seems time on the doomsday clock may be running out. And, the great industrialized consumer civilization of North America's lasting legacy may be the demise of humankind. Sadly as too many of our political and other leaders seem bent on doing: Appealing to the lowest common denominator may elicit visceral popularity - But, it won't solve the problems.

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