The Inescapable Burden of Exquisite Taste
By Angora Holly Polo
At times I feel so beleagured that I feel I simply can’t go on; but when I stop to examine the source of this feeling, I sometimes find that it’s as simple as having to get up too early, or listen to that terrible Garrison Keillor on my afternoon commute.
Today, having my typical NPR enjoyment poisoned with such folkery, I decided to go radio slumming on the FM end of the dial. I wanted to know what it felt like to be such a person who is satiated by an audio experience labeled so mundanely as the Mountain, where “deejays” use such tricks to introduce a song with a cliff-hanger like: “This guitar solo was recorded five minutes after this man hacked together the guitar in his garage,” only to cut to commercial and return half an hour later with a crappy Steely Dan number. I wondered how simple and easy it must be to fall for such tricks on the hour every day, commuting in a ’91 Toyota Camry to the work site.
How free it must feel to listen to this happy, terrible music and not have to go looking further, to attend the “Conifer Mountain Music Festival,” ravaged with screaming kids, running, yelling, people in weird mountain hats.
Have you ever attended a local summer mountain music festival? Have you seen that dancing lady? The one with the fanny pack, dancing with the spritely white haired gentleman. The two normally dress in Wal-Mart drab drudgery, but whenever beer is around, they break out their funky pieces of flare: a beer-themed lanyard, a floppy mountain pseudo-cowboy hat, sunglasses with a fluorescent pink attachey band worn round the ears to keep said shades from flying off during fits of “Sweet Home Alabama”-inspired fits of kinetic passion. Dancing lady is doing that weird shoulderey dance, clapping her hands, clasping her hands, unaware of which music she’s even dancing to but happy enough with her Coors Lite in her hand, sipping away all night on it. Perhaps she saves up her energy because she goes to as many social gatherings per year as I go to per week. Perhaps she has magical go-go-dancey dust in her source of all life, i.e. fanny pack. I find myself envious, in the corner, too smart to think the music danceworthy. Like religion, I wish I could submit and be stupidly happy, but I can’t force myself to believe. And I drink my ten piss water beers for her one, and go home with the sad fact that I could never be drunk enough to dance that badly in public, unless I were at Lipgloss and was doing so ironically.