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Sunday, July 31, 2005


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David X.

I would take it as a sign of truly successful fatherhood if my four-year-old would sing ANY Pete Townsend solo song -- especially Slit Skirts, my favorite. You are to be commended for such epic parenting.
My own four-year-old is more likely to be crying havoc, and holding bad guys at bay with his light sabre. A slightly less lofty calling perhaps, but rough fits in my Hush Puppy shoes, so there you go.


Top Management recently discovered a tape I made for her the last day of my first senior year of college. (Yes, I hate multiple senior years. Shut up. Unless you’re one of my parents, in which case, thanks again, Mom and Dad!) We know it was the last day because, for perhaps the only time in the hundreds of times I made tapes, I wrote in the little "date" slot that blank tapes used to have.

It’s a kickass collection. Heavy on the 80s powerpop like the Smiths, the Smithereens and Hoodoo Gurus, with some stuff from the 60s like The Four Tops, some classic rock artists—one of my favorite segues of all time, Prince’s "I Could Never Take the Place of Your Man," followed by its antecedent, Bruce’s "Dancing in the Dark." R.E.M., the Replacements, and oddities like NRBQ, it’s great, great stuff. If I do say so myself. And I do.

It’s also bizarre how, while still in my wonder years of college, I was already a nostalgic bastard. The first eight songs are all about love and loss. "Behind the Sun," by Eric Clapton followed by "Train in Vain" by the Clash (my other favorite segue of all time) is pretty indicative. What was my problem?

I know, I know, how much time do we have? Looking back I realize how little I had to be unhappy about. Fortunately, I now know just how good I’ve got it—and it’s mighty good indeed.

Ah, I was so much older then. I’m younger than that now.

But it’s still a great tape, even if it’s not completely appropriate for younger listeners—Top Management’s kept it in the minivan and it’s gotten a lot of play in the past few weeks, hence The Bean learning "Slit Skirts." (Which song, by the by, has some of the finest drumming you’ll ever hear on a pop song.) We have to skip over one of Top Management’s former favorites, though, Frank Zappa’s "Bobby Brown." Other songs, like R.E.M.’s "Ages of You" may be just as inappropriate, but who the hell can tell what Stipe is singing? Sometimes ignance is bliss. At least that's what I tell Top Management whenever she asks me what I could possibly have been thinking when I did this or that.

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