The O-town Scene

July 21, 2011

The O-town Scene - Oneonta, NY

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Scene the O-Town Vol. 1, No. 40 102 Chestnut St., P.O. Box 250, Oneonta, NY 13820 (607) 432-1000, ext. 255, EDITOR Cassandra Miller ASSOCIATE MANAGING EDITOR OF THE DAILY STAR Adrienne Wise PUBLISHER Armand Nardi CONTRIBUTORS Josh Baldo, Sam Benedict, Mark Boshnack, Simona David, Emily Greenberg, Brian Haak, Terry Ludwig, Jim Koury, EDITOR OF THE DAILY STAR Sam Pollak Karen Miritello, Genevieve Pedulla, Emily Popek, Jacob Pucci, Lisa Ryther, James Derek Sapienza, Mark Simonson and Adam Sisenwein. ADVERTISING DIRECTOR Sean Lewis The O-Town Scene is published Thursdays by The Daily Star Inc. Free copies are distributed throughout Oneonta, as well as parts of Otsego, Delaware and Schoharie counties. Member of The Associated Press and CNHI News Service EDITOR’S NOTE I first rode the Cooperstown Blues Express two summers ago when a friend from New York City was visiting. I’d heard talk about what a “unique, good time” it was, and wanted to show my friend such a time. I understood the gist of it _ a band plays on a very slow-moving train and people drink alcohol, hence the train also being known as the “Booze Express.” So there was this vague expectation for something great. At first, it was a little awk- ward to be just two single ladies when it was obvious so many had come in groups. But, as the train rolled on, something hap- pened _ everyone started treating each other like old friends, simply because we were all there, sharing a three-hour experience together. I saw acquaintances, who gave me hugs. They were so happy to see someone they knew, and I was, too. Even my friend got hugs. It didn’t matter that we had come as two, we were now part of a clan of 200. Passengers became uninhibited about danc- ing, arms flailing, hips bumping (this is partly thanks to the social lubrication sold cheaply in the bar car). 2 O-Town Scene July 21, 2011 It started to become apparent why people have such enthusiasm for the Blues Express. It is indeed a unique, good time. Even those not consuming mind-altering substances could relish the open country air, the gorgeous landscapes rolling by, the camaraderie and the novelty of the whole experience. Writers Karen Miritello and Emily Green- berg touch on the experience in articles on Pages 15-17 in this issue. Speaking of gorgeous nature and novel experiences. (Another awkward beginning, but bear with me.) How often do you just lie in the grass in a park or field, and look up? It’s kind of wonderful. I don’t do it often, but when I do I understand the whole meditating- is-good-for-you thing. It’s hard to be angry, stressed or sad when you’re spread across soft grass, sunshine wrapping itself around your arms, your calves, your eyelids. (I did this today on my lunch break, so the experi- ence is fresh in my mind.) It really does help _ you get out of yourself for a little while. And life seems manageable again, and the world seems kind. I stand up ready to go back to my particular life and world, with the belief that everything will be all right. I highly recommend both unique, good times. While there’s no schedule for lying in the grass under a tree, the Blues Express leaves the station every Saturday night. _ Cassandra Miller Miller is the founder and edi- tor of the O-Town Scene, and is thinking of meditating and train-dancing more often. She can be reached at

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