Saturday, April 08, 2006

Bless you Sousa

The military loves Sousa. I think it might be that he's so wonderfully predictable. You don't even know the name of the piece, just check the time (4/4, we're all good here) and the upper corner for the magic name.

Until that darn trap-for-heffalumps.

This is back in California at the DLI (Defense Language Institute) where every month or so there would be a make-the-troops-happy event where everyone got to dress up in their natty green polyester and stand out on a field for an hour while people shouted at them from a grand stand. I think this one was even more important because there were considerably more people in the grandstand, and I had actually agreed to attend. We had the march 'em on the field Sousa, and the stand-around-a-while Sousa without a hitch. And then they put on the stand-rigidly-at-attention Sousa. Now, I have to think that someone picked out this particular piece, and then someone else agreed with it, and possibly a third person was even consulted to ensure that they honestly, really, truly wanted to play it. So there is no excuse for it aside from blatant ignorance. However, it was a glorious moment when the first few bars of the Monty Python Flying Circus theme song sailed majestically out on the air.

And yes, at the appropriate moment there rose up from the ranks an unmistakable 'PTHHHHHHPBBBBT.'

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

For your listening pleasure: