Did someone just call me a tastemaker?
It’s just my delusions of grandeur, you say?
I can see that. Point taken.
Anyway, allow me to dive into something you might find obnoxiously hipsterish. But I’m hoping that by the end you’ll have found me an endearing — if too cool for the school I run in my living room — internet presence.
A week or two ago, I was having a conversation about LCD Soundsystem and how they got to be so darn popular/widely mourned by the cool kids. The person I was talking to was appropriately sad that the band was doing their final show as we spoke, but was puzzled about the way the band’s break-up had enlarged the band slightly beyond their rightful place in the musical universe.
I honestly had no idea why this was so, having musical taste that ranges from (at its best) scattershot to all right. So, I couldn’t offer a really informed response. But, based on what I know and why I like things, I offered the suggestion that maybe it’s because some of their songs remind some of us who were certain types of teenagers of how we used to feel*. Even if some of those feelings are feelings that we’re glad we grew out of.
The other person countered that he didn’t want to remember being that age — a valid point — but I’d still argue that the energy behind “Daft Punk is Playing at My House” isn’t solely from the baseline. It’s that DAFT. PUNK. IS. PLAYING. AT. MY HOUSE. MY. HOUSE.
And the jocks can’t get in the door.
I mean, yes, am I glad to be way, way beyond that kind of high schoolness. Not because it was particularly bad for me. I was a nerd, but a nerd with a varsity jacket (for a SPORT, not BAND**, like someone else who lived in my parents’ house***) who tended to avoid trouble. Also, I’m very friendly and a little funny. So, I didn’t have a particularly rough time in high school. Mostly, I was bored and wasn’t sad when it was over. For the majority of my four years as a Fightin’ Farmer (or is it Farmerette in the feminine?), I spent most of my time waiting for life to get interesting. And I had a sneaking suspicion that didn’t happen until college.
But the real reason for my answer was because this is my favorite song right now:
But that’s probably because there’s a part of me that still thinks that this one of best and most original things on tv ever:
And, as a note to anyone who doesn’t get it: Every single person I know who also thought that show was about them still likes the way Jordan Catalano’s always leaning against stuff. Even if he can’t read.
* I sort of completely stole this line of reasoning from Heather Armstrong at dooce, but I agree with the spirit of what she’s saying. And she said it better. But if I had to condense it down to a few words, I would call us bookish, sensitive, and self-consciously ironic. Basically, the type of people who were a little weird in high school, but able to leverage the weird into interesting in college, where we finally fit in.
** Not that band is not a totally valid way to get a varsity letter. No one’s flinging that accusation around willy-nilly. No sir. Not here. Never would occur to me to do so.
*** Have I also mentioned that I have zero musical talent? (Like seriously, don’t even hand me the wood block. You will live to regret it, especially when I decide to take a solo.) But did you know that I can run or swim, for like, forever? And that I had six of those maroon and yellow (yes, I know) puppies? Oh, you don’t care? Can I pretend that you do? Oh, all right.