Author: Sargent, Geoff

Trapping Innocent Animals

I recently received the following email, which somehow made it through all my spam and junk-email filters:


The trap, I’m sure you’ve now come to realize, is that any time you do something for the CBA, the CBA is immediately back at you. And our Welcome columnist jam is no exception. Would you be willing to organize that again?


My immediate reply, in part, was:


Ahhh yes, the old CBA-trap ploy.

I already anticipated my incipient demise and have a plan in mind. However, I was waiting for the FDF schedule to post so I can coordinate the Welcome jam with a dobro jam I am thinking about organizing.

My plan, like last year, would be to do the Welcome columnist jam after the last set of the evening....the only variable is which evening? I don't recall which evening we did last year but my inclination is to do it on a weekend evening...that way we might capture some of the weekend warrior Welcomers.


I have concealed my email correspondent’s name simply by referring to him as R to preserve his confidentiality and allow an anonymous, discrete presence while commandeering his golf cart around the fest.

This email was actually a refreshing change from the typical Nigerian-based CBA emails that I receive claiming to have “$1,000,000 in a secured Grass Valley bank account” and explaining I am the only individual who can help move the money to an anonymous offshore account in the Caymen Islands.

Usually the sender of those emails offers to split the money with me if I would provide my bank account number to transship the currency. I have been skeptical about the accuracy of the email, suspecting it might be for a far larger denomination than indicated and concerned that it is ultimately an attempt to ensnare me in an ongoing money-laundering scheme. So I have resisted responding.

Which brings me to my next point; what to do about the Welcome columnist jam. We now have a plan….somewhat different as indicated in my email correspondence, but that’s the way it goes. The plan is to do the Welcome Jam on the FDF Thursday evening after the final stage-set. And this year I will (gulp) host the Welcomers at my humble camp, usually located across the ditch from the showers; that is, if I can score my campsite again this year, which is actually a pretty good location, near various loos and at the edge of tent city, strategically located for post-jam patrols deep into the interior of jamville.

I thought I would conduct a social experiment by announcing the Welcome jam via my Sunday column. Actually it serves several purposes. Last year we (gasp, oh no, heavens to Betsy, great googly mooglies) left a few of our highest profile correspondents off the email list (sorry Mark and Darby) and then there are a few rogue correspondents that contribute an occasional column or two that aren’t on the usual email list, and I believe there are a couple of Breakdown correspondents that do a Welcome column here and there. So I am trying to put out the word using the local bluegrass bush-telegraph to alert all those unrecognized Welcome columnists about the Welcome jam at FDF this year. Shoot me an email if you are one of the rogue Welcome columnists that would like to be on the list.

“But”, you say, “won’t announcing the jam on your column also alert all the paparazzi and Welcome columnist stalkers that we constantly worry about interfering with our private lives?” True, but I have a hypothesis on that (which you may ask about at the fest) and in a way the Welcome columnists are my unsuspecting guinea pigs in the experiment. Besides, maybe I can get JD to pack some heat and provide security in between songs.

In any case, I will follow up with my esteemed colleagues via email for further details, RSVPs, where to park your armor plated Humvees at GV, and how to manage your security details and entourage.

Postscript to last month’s “Fly Me to the Moon” column: my truck underwent major surgery last week for an organ transplant, which has successfully prolonged its life with a new transmission. My mechanic tells me the new tranny could last another 168,000 miles and the engine should be good for another 140,000 miles or so. The question now becomes whether I should drive to the moon…or drive to the moon and back?

What is it with transmissions, bluegrass, and the CBA? I just don’t get it. Something eerie is going on here!

Posted:  4/18/2010

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