“The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down”

My brother Joe shared this link, http://observer.com/2017/07/unpacking-the-absurd-logic-of-cultural-appropriation-and-what-it-will-cost-us-media-robbie-robertson/ on Facebook this evening.

The article moved me greatly.

i am sitting, yes sitting, in the sitting area in our backyard long after sunset. The sitting area is located in the south corner of our backyard. We have never enjoyed it enough, choosing to stay inside. It is a bit worn down and the carrot wood tree on one side now spans over most of the area. In the Southwest corner, this is a problem as sitting areas require a heating device of some sort in the evening for most of the year. My choice of a wood burning chimerea is no longer practical because of the overhanging branches of the carrot wood.

Still, i recently vowed to pass on televised baseball games and sit out here more often to write or just relax, usually listening to my old music on a bluetooth device.

Tonight, i stopped my writing efforts and my contemplation to check Facebook and found Joe’s shared link.

i would like to expand on my thoughts about Robbie Robertson, and wish Joe had done so because Joe is so much more of an elegant writer and much deeper thinker than i am. Knowing him, i’m sure he would have expressed my thoughts much better than i would have.

i am tired. It is not terribly late. i try to stay up until 10:30 p.m. every evening. Why? Well, i grew up with my father who watched television’s network prime time shows in our den every evening until the Cinderella ending of prime time at 10:00 p.m. CST or CDT. Then he would watch the Nashville half-hour news show. Then he would go to bed. i like the pattern of that routine, the rhythm, and try to emulate it.

Of course, i’m terrible at it. Sometimes, i stay up later, caught up in reading, writing, or a TV show. Sometimes i say the hell with it and go to bed much earlier. But following in my father’s footsteps continues to be my goal in this and many other ways.

So i sit and think about “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down” and the “cultural appropriation the Observer’s  article addressed.

It seems sad to me we actually have to discuss things like this. It has also occurred to me our country has become schizophrenically Victorian in nature and speaking out for freedom of expression, for trying to be culturally, politically, racially, ethically, and religiously unbiased can make one a societal leper.

But it is late and i can’t expand on this right now. i am old. i have seen the world change, some things for the better and some things for the worst. i have found i no longer expect my thoughts to be accepted. Old folks like me have locked themselves into their roles, their convictions and will not sway. The younger set is out to change the world and know, unflinchingly know just like their predecessors of young, yep, the old folks of now, they, these new youngsters are right and not only are resistant to input, they resent it.

But you know, ole Robbie Robertson caught the feeling of those who are disenfranchised with a beautiful, artistic expression of sentiment when he coined the lyrics of “The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down.”

Right now, i feel pretty driven down myself.

2 thoughts on ““The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down”

  1. And I, as I always do when reading one of your treasures, feel uplifted and isn’t that the perfect way to say ‘goodnight’ to one more day of Life. Thank you, Jim

  2. And I, as I always do when reading one of your treasures, feel uplifted and isn’t that the perfect way to say ‘goodnight’ to one more day of Life. Thank you, Jim

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