I’m home…

(Today’s view of the pond.)

Did you miss me?  😉

Given the frequency of my posting, I doubt it.  That should change soon.  I had to make a few decisions about my computer time.  I was spending far too much time on this machine, posting in far too many places.  I decided to give most of it up and do my posting here and at Bountiful Healing.  That’s enough, I should think.

The other problem has been the state of my computer.  It died.  It was resurrected.  It died again.  It was resurrected again.  M has been spending a lot of time trying to repair it.  At this point I’m hoping he can get it working well enough to blog, check email, and access my photos.  I want to finish organizing my photos, put them all on DVD’s, and then do whatever has to be done to get my computer back to what it used to be if that’s even possible.

In other news…

M and I just returned from a quick trip to State College, Pennsylvania.  You’re probably wondering what’s there (other than Penn State University).  We went to see Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band perform at the Bryce Jordan Center (at Penn State University).

You can find the setlist (if interested) here.  As always, the Boss and band put on a very energetic performance.  After the show I got to thinking that these guys are all older than me by close to a decade and if they’re still rockin’ like that 3-4 nights a week, well, I should rethink everything I think I know about aging.

(The Boss.  Photo © 1975-2009 by M&R)

M and I have been fans since the early days.  The photo above (and the next two to follow) were taken by M and friends when he met Bruce and the band when they played at a small venue down south in 1975.

(Bruce Springsteen, back in the day.)

(The photos are over 30 years old and a little worn from time and travel.  I should sit down and learn a little about restoration in Photoshop just for the fun of it.  In my spare time.)

(The Big Man, Clarence Clemons.)

I dunno… I really enjoyed last night’s concert.  It was, as they say, a joyful noise.  Lots of good music with lots of good energy.  That said, I wasn’t entirely happy with the setlist.  Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band have a ton of good and great songs of their own to choose from.  While I think it was fun that they’re taking requests from the audience, I also wonder (as another audience member said) if they really need to be doing covers.  And on the other (other) hand, I can see how they might want to shake things up, do something different, or in this case maybe not so different in that they’re going back to bar band roots (so word has it).

When request time rolled around and they did “My Generation” for the first time ever, I was impressed.  I didn’t think it was a great rendition, but it was interesting.

And then there’s the staging of certain things which I know is all part of the act, but I liked it better when it seemed spontaneous.  For instance, when Bruce brought a little girl up on stage to help him sing “Waitin’ on a Sunny Day” I thought, “How awesome!”  It was cute.  It was touching.  It was something I hoped the little girl would remember.

But then I got online after the show and read the notes from their May 5th gig, including this:

After getting singalong help from a kid on “Sunny Day,” Bruce decides, “You’re hired! Stevie, you’re fired!”

And now I’m thinking of that part of the perfomance as the Courtney-Cox-of-2009-moment.  Scroll down to ‘Music Video” here if you don’t know what I mean.  That video moment was repeated during Springsteen’s Born in the U.S.A. tour when he would pull a girl up from the audience to dance with him on stage.

It just takes something away from it, you know?  It shouldn’t.  The little girl still had her time up on stage and it was cute and awesome and I enjoyed it at the time.  I’m a skeptic after-the-fact.  Not a good thing, I suppose.  Better to go with the original feelings and who cares if it was planned/staged?

I have to admit I really liked the “Fan From the Womb” sign.  I was quite pregnant with our youngest son when we saw Springsteen in Atlanta, Georgia during the Born in the U.S.A. tour so when Bruce held up that sign M and I both turned to each other, reminded of that.

One of the really cool technological things about the show was watching the large video screens while Nils Lofgren played guitar (sorry, can’t remember which song it was even after going through the setlist a few times).  He had a camera on the end of his guitar and we (the audience) were able to watch as his fingers moved across the strings.  I thought it was a pretty awesome thing to see, that up close.  (This may well show how long it’s been since M and I have shelled out the kind of money it takes to see a concert like this.  For all I know, they’re all doing this sort of thing all the time now.)

The best song of the evening, in my opinion, was Jungleland.  I’m not good at this review thing and describing why I think it was the best.  It just was.  It drew in the audience, including the partying bunch of frat boys sitting behind us.  Anything that could settle them down to silence has to be good.  Epic, even.  One of them did decide to scream and screech during one of the really quiet parts of the song.  His reasoning:  “So you can hear me on the recording cos you know they’re recording this.”  As if they can’t dub his obnoxious voice out if they want to.  Heh.

It was a great concert.  Truly it was.  We rocked.  We rolled.  We sang.  We danced.  We felt a part of it all, something I think Bruce Springsteen is particularly good at (drawing in the audience).  I’m not sure why I have mixed feelings about it.  Perhaps because a few of my favorites didn’t make it into the setlist or the requests.  Whatever the case, I’m glad we went.  It was a good time, mixed feelings and all.