July 4 parade in Danville

As I look around the world it seems that nothing is going right. The Federal, state, and local governments are going broke. The politicians are all foundering. The predictions about the economy are that the rate of decline is slowing. So now we are going to hell just at a little slower rate!

But you know what…. it is summer time in California. And as they sang in Porgy and Bess, “the living is easy, fish are jumping, and the cotton is high. Your daddy was rich and Mama is still good looking so hush little baby don’t you cry.”

So as I watch the world melt down, I also watch the wonder of my garden in the back yard sprouting with tomatos and peppers. The cats are sleeping in the morning sun. I think of my old hound dog that I only had for five summers. My daughter has decided to take some beginning tennis lessons and the community pool is now open, and I can see all the neighbors who have been hiding all winter. I feel like the circle of life.

Thursday: after dropping my son off at summer day camp I saw my neighbors Ken and Jan coming out of their house. Ken had a pained look on his face. Then I saw a glimpse of their old Collie, Quad, coming down the steps to the back of their SUV. I immediately knew what was happening. I have lived this painful saga more times than I care to remember. I walked over and Ken told me the news: their dear, sweet old hound dog was very sick, and it was time to take him to be put down. They let me give him a hug before they laid him in the car. It was one of those poignant moments every pet owner has. I remember spending a 4th of July evening with Quad after he busted out of his yard many years ago as we watched the fire works go off from my front porch. Good bye old friend.

Tomorrow is 4th of July. I will head down to Danville and watch the kids march in the parade and laugh at the politicians as they preen and posture like anyone cares if they march or not.

So here I am in Danville on the of  4th July waiting for the parade to start. It looks like a gathering right out of Norman Rockwell. Except this crowd is up scale and overwhelmingly white. Lots of folks wearing red white and blue. As a matter of fact, I don’t think I have seen this many white folks at a public event in the Bay Area in a long time.

A lady with a young boxer pooped on the parade rout. But not to worry the debris is immediately scooped up. Ah the utility of Louis Vuitton. It would have been interesting to watch the marchers dodging the products of bow-wow. I am surprised there are not more dogs. In Pleasanton, the dogs would have their own parade.

Danville Parade July 4 2009I am glad to have a spot in the shade. More folks are crowding in to watch. The police motorcycles are coming with their sirens wailing to clear the route. Then come the boy scouts and the girl scouts. Then come the politicians.

The mayor of  Danville appears and a few folks start to boo. Also the San Ramon Mayor  Abram Wilson and city councilman  Scott Perkins roll by. Perkins riding in a Toyota. Someone yelled at him to get an American car. I love when people mess with small time politicians.

The Parade has a strong military theme to it. Lots of veterans groups. Loud cheers went up for the Pearl Harbor survivors. They were followed by Pearl Harbor survivors families. For the life of me I cannot figure out what their achieved status is other than their relation to the folks who were at Pearl Harbor. 

There was a surreal moment after the Vietnam vets marched by.  They were followed by a truck hauling a Vietnam era Huey helicopter loaded with Boy Scouts. Credence Clearwater is playing Run Through to the Jungle, followed by the Rolling Stones Gimmie Shelter.

As Gimmie Shelter’s minor chords where being bashed out, coming right at me was the Contra Costa Republican Party. Ah the depleted maybe seven of them in all followed by some Republican womens’ groups, and the funniest of all, a local tea party group.

All they needed was some pitch forks accompanied by Lee Greenwoods Proud to be an American to complete the maudlin tableaux.

This song drives me nuts. the lyrics, “I am proud to be an American where at least I know I am free” sounds like some “America – Love her or leave her drunken sentimentality. Then there is some line about the men who died blah blah blah. True, men have died but…So have women… even in U.S. wars in Afganistan and Iraq. 

Not to mention Rosy the Riviter or the WACS or the WAVES, and WRENS.

After this I decided I needed to head for the gym and eventually a BBQ.It was a beautiful weekend.

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