“Summer time done, come and gone, my oh my.”
When Phish plays the final note of their run at Dick’s Sporting Goods Park this month, (a series of shows, known to fans simply as Phish-Dicks) summer will, by many official accounts be gone.
And yes, the Office of Incalculable Calculations has reported that summer 2011 flew by faster than any other summer on record. It seems like just yesterday that we were airing out the tent in preparations for Telluride.
But leave it to Coloradoan music freaks to stretch out the closing ceremonies for the season. Last month, Planet Bluegrass had their official end of summer party with the subdued, but always idyllic Rocky Mountain Folks Festival. Nederland’s “Michigan” Mike Torpie threw his end of the summer party last month as well with NedFest, and a whole host of street fairs, block parties and afternoon outdoor sets all collectively tipped their hats to the dog days.
By some accounts, though, summer ain’t over until the fat lady — in this case Red Rocks — has sung it’s final notes, and luckily promoters are taking a gamble there with shows that go into the early days of October. It could be, afterall, that if Furthur plays “Cold Rain and Snow” when they close the venue for the season with a three-night jaunt, that they could be singing the song in the actual weather the song is describing — but let’s hope not.
I don’t know how I personally did it this summer, but I somehow, except for a few sprinkles at Red Rocks during the Avett Brothers, managed to make it the entire summer without getting rained on at a show, and I credit that achievement to preparedness.
The day that I went to Folks Festival (it had rained the night before), I packed my rain jacket and a hat, had a dry sweatshirt and jeans in the car for backup, and I didn’t see a drop. Even our friend who joined us wore rain boots, to which she pointed out was a certain sign that we wouldn’t see any foul weather.
And that’s just the thing. I think the weather knows when we’re prepared and when we’re not. I think the reason I only felt a few drops at the Avetts was because I had a jacket, but most of the rest of my family hadn’t thought about rain whatsoever.
So here’s what I’m going to do for all you next summer. I’m going to insure that you all stay dry. Every show that I attend, I will make sure to go through the trouble of packing enough rain gear to survive a hurricane. I’ll double zip-lock bag all cameras and phones. I will have a bag of dry goods in the car ready to provide warm comfort to soggy individuals, and I will pack a back pack so full of cheap extra ponchos that it’ll look as if I’m heading to the ghetto rain forest.
I’ll do all of this, because I know, the more I spend time packing these items, the more Mother Nature will sit tight with crossed legs holding off any precipitation, simply to spite me and mock my Boy Scout ways. (I was never actually a Scout, but I appreciate their doctrine of being prepared.)
So next summer, when you’re out at your favorite outdoor concert spot, if you’re dry, you can thank me. If you do end up hitting the down-pour show then I must have taken a night off, but I promise you on nights when I’m ready to take on the weather, no one will need to.
See you at the shows.