Saturday, September 7, 2013

And the Band Played On

I am proud of the six years I spent marching in high school and college.  Now, the torch passes on to my oldest son who has just started his first year.  Last week, I got to see him march for the first time, and that night, I saw something amazing, which I'll get to in a moment.

First off, you can watch the following video, and see if you notice anything interesting.

Perhaps you heard how noisy the crowd was, or how difficult it was to hear the music over them.  Perhaps you noticed the majority of those caught on camera NOT clapping when the performance was done.  Yeah, it's pretty strange, as it didn't appear they were doing anything else while sitting there.

Yes ... I noticed that though the crowd had "spirit," and cheered on their team ... and though they sat down in reverence to honor an injured player ... and though they showed how to enjoy a game ... yet when it came to the band, the crowd largely ignored them.  "Who needs them?"  You'd think that the largest band in the county would be appreciated by their own school!

Then, as is custom at this school, the band hung back at the end of the game to perform the halftime show for the parents.  The reason for this, I found out, is that it's usually too loud during the "real" performance.  So, evidently the band is used to this disregard, and has taken steps to re-perform the show after the noisy teenagers have left.

I watched the re-performance, and it was nice to be able to enjoy it without distractions.  But something else happened...

The football players (on our team) also hung back at the end of their game.  They went over to the end zone and sat on the grass, watching the band's whole performance.  This was not normal.  When the performance was done, the football players stood up and clapped.  Then they converged on the band.

One of the parents yelled, "They're mingling!"

Down on the field, the coach explained that the football players wanted to thank the band for their support.  The last week, the team had to play without the band's presence, and they noticed the difference.  The band helped everyone to cheer the team more, and helped them feel better about themselves.

As the football players walked off the field, the band played the fight song.  They all looked happy.  It was something I had never seen before, and may never see it again.  It's good to know that someone else enjoys the band!

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