At least it’s a start

From our ol’ rocker, we were glad to see a nice turnout for the annual Tartan Festival, complete with the plaid skilts worn by persons who identified only as Scottish and not something more politically wokisome.

A few months ago, your favorite rocker occupant penned an opinion that some considered a little less than favorable concerning the site of this particular occasion. At that time our slant on the subject was, to put it mildly, excoriatingly received in certain circles.

We’re not ready to completely change our minds about the Miller Quarters as a festival site, but we will concede the place wasn’t all that bad…considering. It was good to see the property receive a much-needed haircut, and it was nice to read the reviews from attendees reflecting on the surroundings, especially the decision to leave a number of Mother Nature’s gift to the grounds.  

It’s just the thoughts of one who may be curmudgeonly benign,  but Miller Quarters as a site for future events such as that of the weekend past still leaves a little to be desired. 

Drone views and a drive-by left us thinking there needs to be a way to utilize more than approximately a quarter of the Quarters’ grounds, and a way to have an event there that doesn’t include completely shutting down Gleason St. 

We understand this was a first-time try at something attracting a large gathering, and we know it takes money to develop a full-fledged activity site. There’s a lot of space available, and that’s one advantage for Miller Quarters. There’s also a lot of hilly space and that, friends and naysayers, is a pretty noticeable disadvantage.

Let’s be fair. This Scottish Festival was nicely done and the folks who are responsible for organizing the event should get a special puff on their ceremonial bagpipe. We who were slightly (or maybe not so slightly) skeptical about the possibility of this area becoming a very special special event center are pulling for the success of anything that will draw crowds.

To be fairer, it’s going to take more than an identifying entrance arch and a few outdoor doodads to make Miller Quarters a destination. The site has promise, but it’s going to take foresight, imagination and cooperation. This is something that requires planning from multiple sources and an “it doesn’t ‘t matter who gets the credit” attitude.

Final thought: If any of you come face to face with an issue that causes concern, be offended. That, we’ve learned, is one of the most impactive words in this language we supremacists of European (and other) heritage call English. If there’s something we don’t like, be offended and you’re guaranteed action.

Examples: A couple of years ago, one family in a small midwestern city was offended by a Christmas parade. Their solution to that problem: write a protest letter to city hall. Result: city administration cancelled parade. The heck with the thousands who weren’t bothered a’tall.

A candidate for superintendent of schools in a Massachusetts district was offered, then disoffered, the job after sending an email to a pair of female (preferred pronouns unknown) committee members in which he addressed the pair as “ladies.” They, and the school board, were offended by this act of microaggression. 

A low-level government employee leaks sensitive information to the media. Why? He was offended by his country’s policies. His punishment? Nothing. His reward? A level of fame known only to the Kardashian few.

Being offended is now a right, and it carries power. Those among us peons need to recognize the potential this carries. If we’re offended enough by the powers that be, we might be the powers. 

So go ahead. Be offended. Practice being offended. You never know when offendedness will be handy, or even handsomely rewarded. Just remember: Never be offended at warm and fuzzy dudes in rockin’ chairs.

– Pat Culverhouse