Sunday, March 28, 2010
It’s almost 4:00 in the afternoon, and I’m sitting on a camping chair at a park for a picnic with my mother. It’s a nice, cool 80 degrees with a slight breeze. Mom has these picnics once a year, the last Sunday in March, with the people she used to work with.
They talk about what’s happened during the past year, who’s died, who’s in hospice, who’s children and grandchildren are doing what and where they are living. We also have some of these children and grandchildren who come, they keep the party lively. Today, we had a 3 year old who was going around, shaking everyone’s hand and introducing himself. Look out John McCain, you’ve got competition.
I was catching up with the former secretary/timekeeper for the company for a little while, she hadn’t seen me since I graduated high school, so there was a lot to talk about! Oh, and I got to show off the pictures from the Impact Awards ceremony and the picture of Barry and I from Palm Springs.
It’s a far cry from all of the explosions going on this past week in Manilowland. Just in the space of a few days there was a post from someone’s personal blog talking about an archived post being published (without the author’s permission) on the My Manilow Network (MMN).
Then another fan who posted an unfavorable review of Barry’s Friday night show, was confronted by Barry’s people at Saturday night’s show and when she refused to leave, was emailed by Barry’s management that evening informing her she would no longer be allowed to attend Barry’s concerts. Basically, she’s been shown the door.
I’ve loved Barry and his music for a long time. I remember seeing him perform for the first time while I was in high school. I did, however, take a break from Barry when I felt I just couldn’t enjoy his music anymore being surrounded by people fighting over who Barry liked better.
During that time, I moved out of my parents home, moved jobs from retail to banking while earning my AA degree and later my BS degree in Business Management. I then had to move home when my mother had a mini stroke as I couldn’t handle running two households. A few years later I met my husband and we married six months later, in June of 1998. Decker passed away unexpectedly in 2000 and my father was diagnosed with his first cancer 4 months after Decker’s death.
I had been going, and going and going, and I finally needed to take a break so I could actually grieve after my father’s death. Mom’s health has been up and down, so what time I’m not working I’m usually with her. My grief counselor suggested that I look into the things that interested me from before my marriage to see if there was something I still wanted to do. That brought me back to Barry.
It’s been 30 years, but there has been a lot of life in between all those years. My life is not consumed with Barry, I have too many things pulling me in other directions to allow me time to do that. I’m thankful for that. Barry probably isn’t, but I am. :o)
There are so many other things we should be talking about right now, but instead there are some people in the fan club who have wrapped their lives around Barry.
Here’s a few things to think about:
How many homes were foreclosed on during the time all of this was going on this past week?
How many children went to bed hungry here in the U.S. during this past week?
How many people lost their jobs this past week?
How many uninsured people died this past week whose lives would have been extended had they had basic preventative health care?
How many people died this past week in Haiti and Chile as a result of their natural disasters? Keep in mind, these people don’t have homes to go back to, and what money they have is being used to survive, not see Barry Manilow in concert. Multiple times.
How many people died from violence in the Middle East this past week? How many people are now left widowed or without one or both parents due to these deaths? Their pain will last longer than a week.
I’m not saying people shouldn’t go to see Barry, but what I am saying is we should be keeping things in perspective. There are a lot of people enduring a lot worse than missing a Barry Manilow concert.
On a side note, I did play Barry's QVC Extra CD with Nature Boy on it. My mother knew that song from her childhood and is now repeatedly singing it. Thanks Barry.