The Austin Chronicle

Luv Doc Recommends: Austin Symphony 4th of July Concert and Fireworks

Zilker Park, Monday, July 4, 2005

By The Luv Doc, July 1, 2005, Columns

Traditionally, the Fourth of July is when we celebrate freedom, and what better way to celebrate freedom than a three-day weekend? That’s a respectable chunk of freedom, isn’t it? And freedom is almost better than blowing shit up. Almost. The best combo, really, is when you get to blow shit up in the name of freedom, which is something us Norteamericanos have been doing with alacrity and zeal for better than 200 years. Sure, freedom can be won in a variety of ways: Economic independence, intellectual enlightenment, physical relocation (run!), and spiritual transcendence (if you can pull it off), but if history tells us anything, freedom is mainly won with well-placed high explosives. Take the war in Iraq: We started out looking for weapons of mass destruction: WMD. The Iraqis probably called them “freedom enablers,” but it turns out they were on the wrong side of the ball. Anyway, after blowing up a whole bunch of shit, we found out that Iraq didn’t have weapons of mass destruction (blush). Well, you can’t blow that much shit up without winning some freedom, and (we discovered after carefully studying some government press releases) it turns out that what we really did was win freedom for the Iraqi people – sort of that Zen thing of not aiming at the target yet still hitting a bulls eye (bravo, Bushopper). Still, there must be some Iraqis who are still not free because they are still blowing shit up – mainly US servicemen and the folks who hang out with them. So the cycle continues. Hopefully the Iraqi people understand that the ringing in their ears isn’t the aftermath of high explosives, but rather the sound of freedom: Freedom ringing. Eventually the ringing goes away, so every once in a while you have to blow some shit up to remind yourself you’re free. Fortunately here in America when we blow shit up nobody really gets hurt, so the sound of high explosives engenders good feelings; happy, colorful memories – at least for most folks. If you’re looking to hear freedom ring this Fourth of July, your best bet is Zilker Park, where the Austin Symphony will be performing their annual Independence Day Concert. As ever, this year’s concert will feature patriotic music – the highlight of which is Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture accompanied by the 75 millimeter Howitzer cannons of the Texas National Guard Salute Battery. If the Howitzers don’t fill the air with the sounds and smells of freedom, rest easy, a spectacular fireworks display follows. After that you’re free to go.

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