Sunday, March 08, 2015
Unorganized Hancock Owns Skowhegan
OK, maybe not owns. They rent it, maybe. They've got a lease with an option, at least. Well, they're not dis-invited from Skowhegan, Maine. I mean, as near as I can tell, there's no mob of people trying to keep them out of Skowhegan. It's fairly hard to get a mob of people together in Skowhegan for anything, and the last time they did, it was for the Unorganized Hancock show. They didn't bring any tar or pitchforks that I could see. I think they used up all the tar on the roof of the Skowhegan Opera House, trying to get it to stop leaking, and there wasn't any left for any mob action:
They applauded a lot. This could have been subterfuge. It could have been a form of diplomacy. As you know, diplomacy is saying, "Nice doggie," while you look for a rock. The audience might have been applauding to lull the boys into a false sense of security until they were able to shovel out a split rail fence. Those rails come out hard in the early spring.
The boys have played in Skowhegan, Maine in the summertime, too, you know. That was the Skowhegan Riverfest, though. In the summer they celebrate the river that runs right through the town, although I'm not sure why. The river doesn't seem to be expressing any sort of opinion about the area on its way by. It's like a tourist that wants to use the bathroom. They smile, but you just can't trust their motives.
Summers in Skowhegan are languid affairs, and the drowsy and oppressive heat -- sometimes as high as the mid-seventies for hours at a time -- might have made running the kids out of town too much of an effort. The audience could have been biding their time, waiting for winter. They put the kids in a tent, which might have just been Skowhegan's way of not inviting us indoors or up on the furniture. It's hard to say:
They have an art college in Skowhegan. The Skowhegan College of Art and Sculpture. I don't think the town owns the college or anything. It seems to be run by a raiding party from the Manhattan tribe. Unorganized Hancock tries to stay out of inter-tribal warfare whenever possible. The members of the band are Irish and Sicilian, and it boggles the mind what they might accomplish if they decided to unleash their native tribalism. All I know is the Manhattan tribe was the nicest possible audience for my boys:
Now Unorganized Hancock is invited back to the Skowhegan Opera House to perform for the Maple Festival again. In Maine we celebrate the fact that if you really try, you can tease the stuff that oozes from a maple tree into a substance as sticky as any old pine tree. It's a sort of talent, I guess. People around here make several layers of what looks like the saddest birthday cake ever, made from wheat that refuses to rise because we bake it on a griddle instead of in an oven. Then we glue the pieces together with the maple substance I mentioned, and then we try to eat it. It's better than everything in the root cellar after six months of winter, so we pretend to enjoy it.
If you're in the Skowhegan area, well, you're probably lost. Since you're lost, you might as well come to the Skowhegan Maple Festival to see the performance of Unorganized Hancock. If you're really nice, and applaud a lot, we won't notice that you're From Away.
[Update: Repeat generosity offender alert! Mark M. from Leadville Colorado left a generous donation on our PayPal button. Again. Many thanks from your grateful friends in Maine!]