stopping by woods on a snowy evening

The lack of awareness or respect for the arts amongst youth of our day is rather staggering and terribly depressing. Last night, Marion Oliver McCaw Hall was nearly full of mostly affluent, mostly white, and mostly middle-aged or older patrons of Seattle Opera. Yet while Nuccia Focile and Antonello Palombi related Leoncavallo’s tragic tale of Canio and Nedda (and her lover Silvio), thousands of young Seattleites sat no more than a few hundred yards away, packed into Key Arena to watch a terrible basketball team (owned by a terrible businessman from Oklahoma) lose another terrible game.

And even in Vermont’s Middlebury, home to one of the nation’s leading liberal arts colleges and a tremendously prestigious writers’ conference, and a region inexorably tied to the poet Robert Frost, things like this happen.

Finally, through the state police barracks, where Sergeant Hodsden had more than two dozen young people photographed, fingerprinted and cited for unlawful trespass, with a few also cited for unlawful mischief. He cannot shake the indifference of one youth in particular, who asked whether he could use his mug shot on his Facebook page.

In conveying his disgust over this communal breach, the police sergeant employed the Frostian technique of repetition.

“They should have known,” he said. “They should have known.”

That’s pretty sick. Seriously, kids these days….