"And Superman, Where Are You Now?"
Thus, Robert Stack as Major-General Joseph W. Stilwell, Commander of the U.S. Army Third Corps, from Spielberg's 1941. Given yesterday's subway-related incidents, I am rapidly concluding that this is no longer the Manhattan into which the High Istari dispatched me when first your humble Dragonmaster materialized hither in New York. Nay, chivalry and courteousness have given way to chaos and controversy! And whilst I'm further kvetching, know ye that it's a bitter pill to swallow when you discover that out of the more than 8000-plus Pipers and Drummers who have been taking part in this year's Glasgow International Festival of Piping --- which comes to a powerful conclusion with this Saturday's World Bagpipe Band Championships at Glasgow Green, there will be over 200 Pipe Bands assembled from all over the world.
Of these, there will be but eight representing the United States. EIGHT! And that very fact, my dears, makes one wonder: Whatever happened to all the can-do enthusiasm with which America was so eager to wrap itself around in the years when we felt we could take the whole world on at a moment's notice?
For the record, those eight Pipe Bands are: the L.A. Scots; also from California, Redlands' own Kevin R. Blandford Memorial Pipe Band; the City of Dunedin, FL Pipe Band; from New York's own Capital District of Albany/Rochester, the Oran Mor and Scotia-Glenville Junior Pipe Bands; from Arvada/Wheat Ridge, Colorado, the Centennial State Pipes & Drums; the Mesa, AZ Caledonians; and, from Albuquerque, NM, the High Desert Pipes and Drums.
When you have eight American Pipe Bands out of over 200 out there to challenge the whole world, you have to ask yourself: Is THIS the best that the U.S. has to offer? Are we so overly obsessed with Britney, Paris, Lindsey and others of their ilk that we've forgotten the true meaning of can-do spirit? Frankly, I am beginning to wonder...........
As ever, America, your humble Dragonmaster desires the knowledge of what you think. You know where to e-mail me: email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.