The Post Where It’s Clear That She’s Nerdier Than She’s Let On

Ninety-four degrees. 

With the heat index factor, we will feel like it’s 100 degrees outside.

Honestly, I do not mind the heat.  I minded it four years ago, when I started spending more time in it.  But by now the heat is like an old friend –a friend with a bit of an obsessive-compulsive streak, but a friend nonetheless.  He should probably lay off the hot peppers, keep some Tums and Tic-Tacs handy and should probably do something about the fetid gases that come out of his mouth; but he’s okay and he’s not intentionally hurting anyone.  (Yet.)

But on days like this, when it’s hot and the thoughts turn to beers and picnics and outdoor activities and things like that, and I’ve just finished some pico de gallo and my fingers smell like Persian limes and cumin, I can’t help but think of my beloved piece of California Central Coast.  And I am thinking that you all may be like, "Here she goes again, getting ‘They’re gonna kill that poor woman!’ on us again."  But I can’t help it; I really cannot.

Okay, so I could help it.  I could keep it bottled up inside, my love for that beautiful coast and that treacherous coastal fog and the June gloom and the miles and miles of artichoke and strawberry fields and the Pacific…. oh, that Pacific ocean, peeking through the cypresses and just being Cary Grant gorgeous and self-assured and downright manly.  But then again, I’ve also kept something else bottled up for a while and one of these days it’s all just gonna come spewing out like so much Diet Coke with a Mentos thrown in.

Like for instance right now we’ve been cooking and listening to this really good radio station called 80s Planet  and with very few exceptions I’ve liked every single song they’ve played so far.  Yup: I like Phil Collins, even if it’s easy to take cheap shots at him (of which I can think none, but that is not the point); I like most 80s music, even the cheez stuff like that one really bad Starship song called "We Built This City" or any Journey, really.  And back to Phil Collins:  I loved Genesis– right through the 90s too.  And I didn’t get Genesis when Peter Gabriel was the frontman, so there (and anyway, that was like in the ’70s).  And Chicago– like them.  And uh… yes!  I even like a little Air Supply.  Commence your gasping-and-sneering sequence, por favor.

It has taken many years for me to be self-assured enough to realize that it’s okay to like good and cheesy music, or at least "good" by my standards and not because it’s critically acclaimed but otherwise unknown.  I think there is room for eclectic tastes and songs, but when you just don’t have it in you to be so very avant -garde, it’s truly exhausting and spirit-breaking to pretend like you don’t know all the words to "Step By Step" (back in 1991, people!) or that you really think that Prince is a sellout or that Madonna is so very passé, ten years before that prophecy actually came true (because she *is* passé now).  Or that you knew of Nirvana back in ’89 when "Bleach" came out, and not two years later like the rest of the mainstream losers.  God. (*bang flip*)

Back in high school I was terrified that someone would ask me what my favorite Primus song was or what was Sonic Youth’s lineup (are they married?  well?), or whether I would be seeing <insert incredibly hip and obscure band name here> during the summer.  Or whether I agreed with the parental advisory stickers on CDs.  A boy I used to like rolled his eyes at me  (I KNOW!) when I mentioned a Genesis song I liked ,once during one of our brief and awkward encounters when I foundered trying to find the words to talk to him while appearing cool and detached (it worked too well, incidentally because he didn’t ask me out until we were a couple of years out of high school, and then I was sorry that little "dream" came true.. but I digress).  And I used to date this guy whose love for extremely rare (and lame, in my humble) bands kept him further in the poorhouse, riffling industriously through the record stores in Santa Cruz and trying to rack up a collection of unknown bands possibly only impressive to him or to the greasy guy who rang him up with the 2" plugs in his ears.  He even threatened once to make me a mix tape of his favorite songs — including some piece of weird screaming angry prog rock called "Heartbreak" or "Heartbeat" or something like that, and which I am glad I never had to force myself to "like".

But those days where the fear that my uncoolness would be detected and exposed are over –after all, I’m constantly blogging about my terminal unhipness.  And there you go, boys and girls: your own true nature will eventually catch up no matter how much you try to disguise it or how many times you tried to read Spin magazine.  So see?  You can’t really change yourself as much as you think you can: I miss California and I like the music that I like.

Oh and Amy Winehouse?  Are you trying to tell me she is original?  Seriously people– the songs may be catchy and all, but please!  Blues is nothing new, and she brings nothing but booziness to the songs.  And anyone can get drunk and sing.

Which reminds me: beer!

Have a nice cold one and have a great weekend, all!

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This entry was published on June 8, 2007 at 3:20 pm and is filed under Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

5 thoughts on “The Post Where It’s Clear That She’s Nerdier Than She’s Let On

  1. Vixen on said:

    I’ve been a big fan of Genesis, The Beach Boys, The Eagles, ABBA, Duran Duran, Air Supply, The Police, Lionel Ritchie, The Commodores, The Miami Sound Machine, Bee Gees, Europe, KLF, Journey, C&C Music Factory, the Jacksons, the Osmonds, Def Leppard, ZZTop, and many more artists of the 70’s , 80’s, and 90’s, primarily the 80’s, for many years. I remember people saying that so-and-so was so uncool yet the record sales were astronomical. I bought Thriller and admitted to it. I still play Dancing on the Ceiling. I can sing along to any ABBA song. And yes I know the words to Step by Step. Anyone who ever told me that my taste in music was uncool got the simple response back of “So? I’m not asking you to like it.”
    Since I was never one of the “cool” kids I never cared what anyone else thought. Looking back it seems like a good choice. I remember being happier with my school years than my old schoolmates were. I remember hearing most of them say how happy they were that school was over. I know that I’ve been happier than most people that I know because I don’t care what other people think of my choices in music, books, art, or shows. After all, it is my choice not theirs.
    P.S. I never did care for Nirvana but I like Prince, Megadeth, White Snake, and Motley Crue

  2. I share your passion for cheesy 80s (and 70s) music. Know what’s on my iPod? Devo, Kate Bush, Kraftwerk, Peter Gabriel, The Tubes … gotta love this stuff. Once in a while I get to turn on some younger person who has no idea about any of this stuff … surprising how many times it turns out they like it.

  3. “I’m all out of love, I’m so lost without you….”

  4. 80’s planet is the best. My husband still can’t believe he married someone with such horrible musical taste…and he’s practically forbid me from tainting our daughter’s mind. But little does he know when he’s out, we dance to Faith by George Michael in front of the mirror. Girls just want to have fun

  5. I too have often thought of the heat as an old friend, perhaps because of its connection to a wealth of sentimental memories of my days in Mali, West Africa, where heat was a very persistent friend.

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