Here & there: Spring and the ‘bad new’

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FEATURE — Spring is here. Either that, or two of my boys are regularly sneaking out to midnight fight clubs and taking unguarded shots to the face. Their eyes are that swollen and ringed in black.

But since a morning dose of Claritin makes them whole again, I’m betting on spring.

Plus, there is the most delicious perfume wafting from the popcorn blossoms of my flowering pear tree. It is so good it almost made standing out in the alley behind our house at 5 a.m. trying to entice my freshly-neutered dog back into our yard and back within my vigilance bubble bearable. Almost.

I’m just glad that no one called the police on me and my flash light while said enticing was happening. No pear tree fragrance would have made that braless, pajamaed conversation pleasant.

But I digress. In spite of the allergies, potential embarrassing police encounters and dog neutering, I adore spring. It is crisp and green and new: bright tulips, baby chicks, gorgeous sunsets and fresh beehives.

Not to mention the best part of spring: the urge to clean. I know, I’m weird. But that itch to scour, scrub and sort is so satisfying. And it makes old feel new again. Or at least that’s what I’m trying to convince my children.

I mean who doesn’t like new? New is awesome! New is great! New is absolutely fantastic.

Except when it’s not. Except when it’s the “bad new.” You didn’t know about “good new” and “bad new?” It’s a real thing. It’s just like “good naked” and “bad naked.” Seinfeld invented it. Forward complaints to him.

But even without Seinfeld, I’d know bad new exists because I experienced it just a few weeks ago. At the symphony of all places.

I took my youngest son to see Rachmaninoff there. Not the actual composer. Obviously. But his music. A whole symphony devoted to the Russian virtuoso’s Piano Concerto No. 2.

Tickets were expensive. But hey, anything to inspire a young artist, right? Or, at least inspire less complaining about practice. (That whole unrelenting practice battle is also a real thing. And it stinks.)

Except this symphony wasn’t Rachmaninoff. Well, not entirely. He didn’t show up until after intermission. Instead, the first 47 minutes of the symphony were devoted to something new: an experimental composition inspired by video games and discord.

Seriously? Video games and discord. I need less of both in my life. And I don’t need any of either at the fancy-schmancy symphony.

Midway through the 47 minutes, my 9-year old covered his ears and hung his head. The percussion was too loud, and he now had a headache. This is the same boy who randomly and regularly makes high-pitched chirps around the house and wants to chat-yell through a closed bathroom door when he’s indisposed. So, loud is kind of his thing.

But not like this. Not with crashing symbols, exploding drums and every instrument playing a different note. Not every group of instruments playing different notes. Every. Single. Instrument. Playing. Different. Notes.

About that same time, I started feeling nauseous. I wasn’t the only one. Eight rows behind us, someone wretched, several people screamed and one gentleman ended up wearing flip-flops provided by the symphony.

Before intermission, at least five other people in front of us stormed out, red and huffy. One man so hot his curses and threats to never return to the symphony could be heard from the green carpeted hallway outside of the concert hall.

So, yes, “bad new” exists. And this was it.

But the good news? The Rachmaninoff was lovely. Even if we only heard a portion of it – from the lobby. And even if it was old.

In the spirit of new, old and everything in between: happy spring. Just take my advice and stay away from the bad new. And experimental symphonies.

Kat Dayton is a columnist for St. George News, any opinions given are her own and not representative of St. George News.

Email: katdayton@gmail.com | news@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2019, all rights reserved.

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