Police were called in to quell a mob that formed when an ice cream truck started playing Khachaturian’s “Sabre Dance” while trolling through a suburban neighborhood.
The fast-paced tune, famous for its aggressive tempo and repetitive melody, proved to be too much for a community whose nerves were already stressed from the persistent heat of summer.
“What did they expect would happen?” demanded George Fredricks, a resident of the neighborhood where the incident occurred. “It was a hot day, everyone was getting home from work and trying to relax as best they could in all of this heat; and to top it off here comes this frantic music jarring everyone’s nerves. As a neighborhood we just couldn’t handle it. The dam just sort of burst.” Mr. Fredricks declined to indicate whether he had participated in the melee.
“Why couldn’t they stick to the old classics?” another neighbor chimed in. “As annoying as ‘Turkey in the Straw’ can be after you’ve heard it passing up and down a few streets, at least it’s upbeat and recognizable.”
The ice cream vendor escaped injury but was arrested on charges of disturbing the peace. Police are weighing the possibility of charges against the participating neighbors.
“I don’t know what everyone got so upset about,” explained the vendor. “It’s part of a program from the local arts community. We were just trying to add a little culture to the summer tradition. They should be grateful I wasn’t playing ‘Turkey in the Straw’ for the millionth time.”
“Culture?” said another neighborhood resident. “If we’d wanted culture we would have ordered frozen yogurt.”
This marks the local arts council’s second run-in with the law over its program to diversify ice cream truck music. Last summer an ice cream truck playing Gounod’s “Funeral March of a Marionette” was reported to police after residents recognized the music as the theme from Alfred Hitchcock Presents and became worried.
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