Unfortunately, this is not some pro-homosexual satire.
Tonight, mere hours ago, I had the fortunes to attend (as I always do) the Provincetown, MA fireworks display. The family trip consists of walking into town, eating at a favorite pizza place, visiting a favorite candy store, and then sitting on the beach in a certain location until the end of the show. We've been doing this for over 35 years. The same stores, the same place, without fail except once three years ago when we opted for a beach bonfire instead. Normally, the event is much fun, filled with fireworks, food, and of course, the normal amount of people watching (which, by the way, is an event on its own).
However this year was a bit different in my opinion. For a brief history lesson, Provincetown is the second "birth of America", after Jamestown, because the pilgrims landed there in 1620, before continuing on to Plymouth. A massive monument was erected in their honor and serves as the backdrop for the show. As you would expect, the fireworks are somewhat huge because of this, and the event attracts thousands to the tiny town each year. It's 15 minutes long and is normally something to see.
But this year, the event was marred in more than one way. All was well until the fireworks. Now, normally you can witness the normal amount of illegal rockets going off before and after the show. Nothing new there, people buy them across the border in NH or even in P-town itself, which really acts as a massive black market. But this year, some people decided to compete with the official fireworks, the fireworks that the town had saved for in their budget instead of cancelling the show as some other cities have done. In fact, this year there were two shows, one official and one illegal, happening at the same time.
On top of that, some overly-happy reveler decided to shoot a flare during the middle of the show over the thousands gathered on the beach. Not only was this a huge distraction, it was also extremely dangerous, as due to the wind, it avoided the people on the beach but drifted downwards onto the main pier, with a parking lot. While the flare made its way into the ocean without causing anyone harm, if that had hit the right target (which there were a lot of), things could have gone very differently.
And then, there were the fireworks themselves. I understand budgeting and all to a minimal degree, but while the show was overall a success, some of the rockets that exploded tonight were downright disappointing. The vast majority of the rockets before the finale were not even fireworks, they were more like the cheap things that you can get from China. A few of the illegal fireworks outclassed these completely. And the entire show was held so close to the water that a few of the fireworks were sent bouncing off objects on the pier, which was extremely dangerous.
Three incidents in a span of 15 minutes. I'm very alarmed by the disrespect we showed not only to the people who spent all year planning this, but to the nation itself.
I look forward to a more meaningful and enjoyable experience next year. See you later, P-town.