Thursday, September 08, 2005

A General Sense of Malaise...

I've been bitten by the slack bug and it simultaneously hurts and soothes. Pavement's "Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain" is playing on iTunes, and I'm reminded of how most people were probably introduced to this record: via home-recorded mix tapes. Ah, the romance of the mix tape... the dedication to sit with the creation through its evolution and build it carefully and purposefully. I remember building a mix for my first (of unfortunately too many) long distance relationships. A early/mid-90's alt rock love mix for that special someone that I met and fell head over heels for at a speech tournament at around 9AM. Little did I know that hours later we'd be making out in the gym equipment room, and I was introduced to the world outside of my hometown via this near stranger that I suddenly met and got to know by walking around a huge high school in the middle of nowhere. The little lamp in my bedroom at home kept the room comfortably dark while I plotted the tracklisting and WPGU was my comfort food until it was time to hit record. Smashing Pumpkins' "Thirty Three" still resonates all these years later when my teenage mind truly believed that we "could make it last forever." And I would imagine this tape playing for them, and quietly putting them to sleep at night after we'd get off the phone. It was the glue... the tie that bound across the miles.

Modern convenience and communication have replaced the desperation needed to move people beyond themselves; whether it's meeting someone new or picking up a new record. I'm not immune to this, but I'm not above calling myself out on it either. It's not to say that there aren't benefits to push button, instantaneous connectivity, but it also makes it difficult to disconnect and appreciate life in a sustained moment. Instead, we're just trying to catch up to the next one. Sometimes I think the Radiohead track, "The Tourist," says it best... "Idiot...slow down... slow doooooooooown."


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