I’m home from work today, after spending 33 hours in the hospital from Wednesday morning through Thursday afternoon. My wife and girls are out of town, and I’m doing some cleaning – vacuuming, dusting, laundry, mopping floors, scrubbing toilets, etc. To get me through these tasks I’m cracking a few CDs, and breaking out some wickedly bad dance moves as I clean.
And then as I was singing/screaming at the top of my lungs into the end of a mop handle I realized something – I don’t listen to music any longer. As one of the last persons on earth without an iPod – at least, one of the last 30-something, suburban, middle class, white guys without an iPod – I really don’t have an easy way to listen to music. For a few years I had XM Satellite Radio in my car and at home, but I canceled that subscription a few months ago in a cost-cutting measure. Rather than carry a clunky case of CDs in my car and listen to one disk at a time, 12 songs from the same artist in a row, now I mostly listen to National Public Radio. But the weight and intensity of non-stop news about politics, war and other important but not-too-fun topics has a certain negative impact on the soul. Sometimes I need to turn off Terry Gross and Noah Adams and turn on some wickedly awesome tunes.
That’s what I’m doing today as I clean house. I’m on my third CD – The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Heart Club Band. Before that I was listening to Cubanismo’s Reincarnacion (a wonderful Cuban jazz disk), and prior to that Electronic’s Twisted Tenderness. Later on the docket? Who knows? Perhaps some New Order, Erasure, Monaco (a New Order spin-off), Shakira (late ’90s, before she became a lame english-language pop singer), Bob Dylan, Fat Boy Slim, Pet Shop Boys, The Cure, U2 . . .
That’s why I need an iPod. Just pour all these CDs into that little sucker and press shuffle. Until that day comes I’ll be here, sitting by my CD player, flipping disks . . . and breaking out some wickedly bad dance moves between disk changes.