Christopher Pratt (cpratt) wrote,
Christopher Pratt

Go Bears!

Fun fact #1: my Dad was a Berkeley student as well, and he played sousaphone in the Cal Band. In 1957, the State Department floated the possibility of the Cal Band traveling to Brussels for the 1958 World Fair, which they did: it involved a lot of fundraising, a bus trip to New York City, and a turboprop flight via Newfoundland, all of which must have been a hell of a lot of fun.

Fun fact #2: I auditioned for the Cal Band in the summer of 1987 and made it in playing baritone sax. However, at the second day of band camp in Davis, CA, I was told that band regulations prevented any band member from wearing a beard, and that I either needed to shave immediately or leave the band. I opted to leave the band; I've worn a beard since, oh, 1986 or so and still haven't shaved it off. It still kind of pisses me off that the Cal Band was so finicky about its members' facial hair; the reason given was that everyone had to look the same. At Berkeley? Ridiculous.

Anyhow! Last weekend, Cal Band members met up in Brussels to celebrate the 50th anniversary of their trip to Brussels. They enjoyed dinner in the Atomium, probably drank too much, and presumably showed their wives lots of things they remembered from the World's Fair. [Me, I played Poéme electronique and lamented the fact that they tore down the Le Corbusier building built for the Fair.]

One of the high points of the weekend is shown here:

Here, you see the Manneken-Pis kitted out in a Cal Band uniform (from 1958!), flanked by the Cal flag and the World's Fair flag as well. I have a sneaking suspicion that my Dad might have something to with arranging all of this, but only because we Pratts are known to have a fondness for elaborate getups and borderline ridiculous proceedings, but only if we can pretend we had no idea it was going to happen...

In front are some of the Cal Band from 1958; my Dad is at the far left. :)

More info on the 1958 trip can be found here; I've met Larry before and he's, well, super awesome. Sounds like it was a blast!

[Thanks to Joe Dickinson BTW for the picture.]

  • It's July 2013.

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