(photo stolen from Brian Wall's blog)
I walked over to crash Wesleyan's Spring Fling with the boys so that we could catch a bit of the Hold Steady. Catch a bit we did - just the last two songs of the set, and the band was superbly over-the-top, and the two hundred fans directly in front of the stage pogoed and swayed, but they couldn't convince the band, or the promoters into an encore.
We left before the hip-hop of GZA as Wes students staggered from Foss Hill to the parking lot where barbecued meat was being distributed. The scene was bacchanalian, and not an appropriate place for a dad and a couple of four year olds to be hanging.
We decided to head back to the Art Department buildings and the soccer field to examine the fabric and wood sculptures students were exhibiting outside of the studios. I sat and my kids as they tried to figure out what the art meant. They seemed to be on target with their explanations.
Suddenly, a young woman, topless and distraught walked by, followed by a friend who persuaded her to get her blouse back on. The distraught woman and her friend struggled and argued across the length of the courtyard until a Wes Security SUV arrived, and the distraught woman was confronted. She struggled with the security personnel, and another security car arrived. She was handcuffed. The original responders were quickly followed by four Middletown Police Cars, an ambulance, and a fire truck. Whatever this sad young woman was struggling with, the response to her belligerence seemed a bit over-the-top. (There may be a legitimate reason for the response that I can't fathom because I observed the entire altercation from a distance, and don't know what kind of threat she represented.)
Needless to say, the combination of exuberant, end-of-the-semester, pre-finals over-indulgence, and on-high-alert safety personnel, creates an atmosphere that is, to say the least, tense.