May 16, 2008


This is how I, a solipsist for the ages, would have responded in 1903 if my wife told me about the first flight of the Wright Brothers at Kitty Hawk, ”Oh, really (feigning excitement), I can’t wait to see that, really.” I then would have walked away and gone back to tinkering with my automobile in the garage, leaving my tale spinning wife alone to wonder if what she just told me sank in, and whether or not I really cared. I wouldn't have. I’m one of those people that need to “discover” things for themselves. The more I'm told how great something is the more I resist it.

Over the next thirty some odd years planes would have been tucked somewhere in the back of my head. I’m sure more people would have tried to tell me that something truly revolutionary was happening, but there I’d be, still tinkering with my slowly advancing car, and taking the train to visit my parents in New York.

Then one day in the mid thirties I would have boarded an American Airlines flight with twenty-five other people headed to the west coast. Over the fifteen hours that this flight took I would have become more and more enamored with my surroundings. I would have been chatting with the stewards in their sharp outfits and kicking my feet up in all of the space that I was provided. As each mile passed the magnitude of this crackerjack invention slowly would have revealed itself to me. By the time the plane landed in Los Angeles I would have been hooked.

From my hotel, I would have phoned my wife to tell her how great flying was. I would be gushing with details about the trip and how easy it was and how smart it was of me to travel this way and how she just had to try it. Had I taken a breath during my pleonastic recap of everything that happened that day, it would have dawned on me that my wife had taken the very same trip on more than one occasion over the last few years. Upon completion of my gushing tale, she would tell me what an idiot I was and hang up on me. "What’s her problem," I would have thought, and promptly called up my best friend Mike to tell him about all that he was missing.

Okay, so I like long segues. I discovered Pandora on the old internet today. I have been letting the smart people there create radio stations for me all afternoon. I like the idea of telling someone else the bands I like and having them figure out what other directions my musical tastes may go. Pandora has come to me because I heard some girl in a coffee shop in Hot Springs listening to Interpol and some old Radiohead back to back, and wondered how she got so cool. Sure my wife told me about it at least a year ago. This is a minor issue.

Pandora compliments my musical mission of not only uncovering new music, but refining exactly what it is that makes certain band appeal to me. I am slowly piecing together the attributes that cover my own musical spectrum. Here is what I have so far: I enjoy lo-fi, repetitive rock that is guitar centric and a little nerdy. I like the way that sounds. Now I just have to go out and find all of the bands that fit this description. Any suggestions?


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