Thursday, November 24, 2016

After The Fall

-- illustration from Tinker's Damn Tarot, ™and © 2016 Duck Soup Productions.

Of course there are lots of things I could write about here on the blog; but I haven’t had the heart. Why add to the noise? In 2016, hard news is virtually nonexistent, while punditism and blogs dominate the airwaves and the interwebs. In that kind of an atmosphere, anything I type carries as much weight as anything anyone else types. It may be democratic with a small ‘d,’ but it’s more noisy than useful. 

Of the election, the only thing I’ll do here is re-iterate something that I wrote on Facebook a couple of weeks ago, and that is: I can't believe that 59 million Americans are all Haters — although the Democrats in their desperation to blame anyone and everyone except themselves for their loss have chosen to brand them as such.

It’s much more likely that the Average Person who voted for Trump watches a lot of reality TV and is a big fan of The Apprentice. Trump won simply because he was the biggest Celebrity in the race.

I’m old enough to remember The Beatles taking over America. For as long as I’ve been alive, America has Completely 100 percent Enamored with Celebrity. Just look at your supermarket newsstands — I don’t even know who 99 percent of those people are who get their faces on the supermarket tabloids, but other people seem to, and someone is buying those rags. 

If Donald Trump has been successful in any business, it's been the business of self-promotion. It's my belief that most of the people who voted for him did so out of Blind Celebrity Worship, the same as what got another ridiculously under-qualified Republican elected a few decades back. “I seen him on the tee-vee!” — it’s as simple as that.

It’s how Ahnolt got to be Der Gubernator, after all. 


I’ve always liked trying New Music and more often than not feel rewarded when I do. But the music business of today is like the Wild West when compared to that time, almost forgotten now, when Record Companies actually held all the power and a handful of powerful recording business executives were the Supreme Arbiters of Taste. 

It’s a lot easier — really almost unbelievably easier — for bands and musicians to get their music out there now, out where people can hear it; the irony may be that while it’s not nearly as hard to get onto the playing field as it used to be, it’s ever so much harder than it ever was to get noticed and heard, because that playing field is more crowded and noisier than it ever was.

Maybe in coming weeks I’ll write about some of the pleasant discoveries that have found their way into my ears recently; but for now it needs to be said that not all the stuff on that level playing field actually deserves to be there.

I won’t mention the name of the band I sampled last night because I’m not feeling vengeful towards them, and after all, who died and made me the supreme arbiter of taste? Also, it was on the strength of their name that I picked them out of the crowd; and I’d hate to tarnish their namesake with the awful sounds that came out of my speakers last night. But it was one of those things … all I needed to hear was a few bars to know that this particular bit of caterwauling was Not For Me.

It’s what happened next that I want to tell you about. Having sent the offending mp3 files straight to the recycling bin, I hopped online to read about the band, and there discovered that Wikipedia referred to their music as “nostalgic.”

I thought: ’Nostalgic’? Nostalgic of what? 

I supposed, on thinking about it, that the sound was a little bit late ‘nineties, early ‘naughties. But here’s the thing: in order to feel nostalgic about something, it has to have been gone for a little while. 

Am I now so old, have I lived long enough that some strange people out there are feeling nostalgic for the late nineties? — a period which happened like a week and a half ago and which is better off forgotten anyhow? I suppose if someone was born in the very early ’90s they might actually be old enough to feel a little bit wistful for that dismal time period, but frankly if you’re that young you’ve no right to be tossing words like ’nostalgia’ around like confetti. 

If you are under the age of about thirty, you do not get to decide what’s nostalgic, period — because you’ve only been alive for about five minutes, and you were born into a Science Fiction world where words like ‘nostalgic’ must of necessity be applied to a time before you were born.

— Thorn

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