Sunday, June 04, 2006

Weekend Assignment: Things You Like Now But Not Then

Since the weekend is rapidly coming to a close, I'd better get busy on the weekend assignment Scalzi's handed out at By the Way...

Weekend Assignment #114: Name a thing you like today, that your younger self would probably roll his or her eyes at. People, places, things, ideas, philosophies -- all of it is up for consideration.
Extra Credit: Name something you didn't like then that you still don't like now.

The first thing that came to mind was music. In my high school days, I was a heavy-metal fanatic. (That was a long time ago, and doesn't mean quite the same thing that it does now.) In college, my musical tastes did an abrupt shift, and I gravitated to the new wave/alternative/punk music that was then becoming hip. I intensely dislike, loathed, ridiculed other genres of music. Somewhere along the line, I realized that almost every genre has its good and its bad. I find myself listening (and loving) music that I never would have listened to before.

But Scalzi's essay was about music, bluegrass in particular, so I decided to rethink the assignment instead of just copying Scalzi's down and passing it off as my own.

I'll let the band Jars of Clay do this assignment for me...
Call it obsession; call it fanatical
I am not trying to make this a spectacle
But I have this craving that justifies behaving
I really need some of that...

Oooh, good coffee, strong coffee
I need to have some
Oooh, good coffee, strong coffee

Oh cappuccino, double espresso
I need something with a really big kick
You ask me 'bout creamer, you ask me 'bout sugar
I tell you those things make me sick
In my...

Oooh, good coffee, strong coffee
I need to have some
Oooh, good coffee, strong coffee

Oooh, good coffee, strong coffee
I need to have some
Oooh, good coffee, strong coffee

For the extra credit, I'll return to the subject of music. I really, really, really hate almost all popular music. I'm talking about the Top 40 with or without Casey Kasem, that lowest common denominator type of music that is all the rage at any particular moment. If it's being played on the radio often, I hate it. If it's actually pretty decent and I do like a particular song, I'll be sick of it soon after they've played it 700,000 times.

Update: In last weekend's assignment, John solicited advise on good books to read while traveling. I recommended anything by Carl Hiaasen. On Sunday night, CBS's 60 Minutes replayed a profile of Hiaasen that was originally broadcast in April 2005. In the segment, Hiaasen was favorably compared with Mark Twain, H. L. Mencken, Mike Royko and Jimmy Breslin.


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