Grateful Dead and Ratdog

Well I have to admit I have been a Grateful Dead fan since the 60’s and my good friends AJ, Jocko and I listened to them all the time. I would not consider us “Deadheads” in the sense that we went to every concert we could get to, but when they came to Seattle if it was possible we would go. I even managed to see them in their own Mecca, San Francisco, at the Winterland Ballroom. Just possibly the best concert of any kind, that I have witnessed. Well as we know Jerry Garcia died a few years back and that ended the band.

One day last summer I was up watching Jay Leno and the musical guest was Bob Weir, who was one of the original members of the Grateful Dead. He was appearing with his band “Ratdog” and they performed some song recorded by the dead. This seemed interesting so I went online and found out they would be appearing in Chicago later in the summer. So I went to Ticketmaster and plunked down $100 for two tickets, thinking this could be a blast. Concerts have changed! We got there and there was a line for males and females where we were searched for contraband. Like a blind guy carries weapons and drugs!

We went in just before Ratdog came on stage and the air upstairs was pungent with the smell of weed and I noticed many OLD hippies, wearing tie dye shirts and beads with really long hair. It made me feel really old. I admit I may be 60 years old but I have been getting in better shape, I have lost over 40lbs since February, my cholesterol, blood pressure and blood sugar is normal thanks to meds and diet. I do not feel 60! Well the music started and I have never been so disappointed in my life, it wasn’t that they were horrible; it just wasn’t the Grateful Dead.

I guess I was trying to live my past over and you know what? You just can’t do it! I wanted some of my youth back and the good old days when we partied hard and never regretted it. Seeing these old hippies made me wake up and realize life moves on and we can move with it or be stuck trying to relive the past. After a few songs the band took a break, I guess they were tired, they were old too. I told my wife let’s get the hell out of here, I have had enough. The Grateful Dead lives on in their music on CD and Sirius Radio. I will be content to listen and not try to relive the old days. Hell the days now are pretty damn good too!

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