Many families have traditions they observe on holidays, including the fourth of July. Around here, our routine consists of my wife spending all day on the 3rd, and a large chunk of the 2nd and 4th, standing in the heat and humidity at the Capitol in DC to be part of the back-up singers for the National Symphony Orchestra.

Every year, the large choir in which my wife sings provides a small chorus to be part of the PBS program A Capitol Fourth. For some reason, she is always first in line to volunteer. At least this year the weather around here is pretty decent – high in the low 80s and in the 70s when the concert begins – compared to previous years. And no rain in the forecast, unlike the times the sky opened up and dumped all over the concert.

As for me, my fourth of July routine is to not go anywhere near the mobs on the Mall. So far, so good.