Monday, November 30, 2009

Letters I will never send, #2

Dear Homeless Looking People Outside Of The New England Conservatory of Music --

Why were you standing outside of the theater before the opera on Sat. night, holding sign that say, "I need a ticket?"

I mean, are you just really passionate Handel lovers? So that you see your lack of season tickets as the worst aspect of your current economic predicament? I can't say I empathize -- I was born nearly tone deaf, and so my cultural inclinations run literary rather than musical. (Like Florence King, I suspect that I might have been born with
an ear for music gone awry.
But that's another story.) And again fortunately for me, libraries are free.

But I fear that you are not really driven by love of eighteenth-century pastorals -- but rather, class warfare. And in that case, I do not get it. Do you really think that class war mongering will make people relinquish their tickets? Do you not think that they will not instead feel put off by your attempts to stir up ressentiment?

Alternately, are there not cheaper available alternatives for warm indoor places? Libraries -- yes, I know, again with the libraries. Bookstores? Coffee shops? Could you not stand outside of movie theaters, seeing as how movie tickets are cheaper? And some of them feature plotlines more interesting than love triangle among hot chick, hot shepherd, and Cyclops?

I fear I also do not quite see targeting opera as symbol of plutocracy. During my red state childhood, my parents often took me to opera and classical music concerts because they were supposed to be Improving. We used to run into one of my Sunday school teachers sometimes -- a woman whom I remember for her sublime voice and utter lack of imagination. Think Lily Fisher from Willa Cather's Song of the Lark. Teenagers in small towns across America do bad, bad things -- among them fad diets and Objectivism -- not to end up like that woman. I would know. So I associate the genre equally with a kind of middle-middle-class earnestness as much as with caviar-swilling aristocrats. That is okay -- beautiful things need not be defined by the likes of the people I like them.


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