Saturday, May 16, 2009

Theme From "Hiatus!"

I've got time to kill now that I'm on hiatus. Serious time. And when you've got time to kill, you don't care how you kill it.

I was killing a little time listening to music. I'm sure we all agree on the obvious, that anything involving the arts is a massive waste of time. And music is right up there on the top of the list of massive time wasters. It's in the air, then it's gone. It's like smelling a strange gas odor but your ears do the picking up, not your nose. It's in, it's out, it's gone.

I'm bothered by the serious finite qualities of music. A song is over with very soon, the notes they use are always the same. The same old rhymes. With some music, though, like classical music, they thicken it up a bit -- like putting a lot more flour than you need in the bread -- with a lot more instruments squawking back and forth at each other, and they make it more mysterious by having everyone do his own thing once in a while. Then they throw in a lone kettle drum. But even with that it's so obscure you lose interest.

None of this is to say that I don't like music. I obviously do or I wouldn't be going to garage sales all the time picking up everyone else's castoffs. That might be part of the problem. It's hard to treasure the music I have when I'm getting it for a dime apiece. Usually it's more. So I have big stacks of CDs occasionally falling over and getting stepped on.

But one huge problem for me is the way they act like the music in the CD is so precious that they're going to have the FBI on you for playing it. It's sound in the air. Anyone can hear it. I was just reading the fine print on a CD and it explicitly states that "Any performance of the music herein" will have the FBI on you. There's enough warnings there that each CD ought to come with a small chunk of barbed wire, just to make sure you stay away. Then the FBI could hang out at doctor's offices, and anyone in for a tetanus shot they could immediately arrest.

One of the ones I got yesterday was a collection of Henry Mancini songs. Easy listening. Grandma even likes easy listening. It's pabulum fun. I also got a couple Guy Lombardo collections, and some others from the Guy Lombardo family of music, like Benny Goodman and Glenn Miller. So you can see I scored big time. Next thing you know some of Grandma's friends might start coming around to see me! And as far as I'm concerned, Any Old Port.

I probably shouldn't admit it, because of the weird laws we have, but somehow I did accidentally hear some of it ... a few of Guy's tracks, a few from a collection of old singles (Dooley Wilson, Larry Clinton, The Ink Spots), and some by Mancini. He has a few tracks there that knock me out, familiar stuff to all. Is he still alive? If not, he really knew his stuff. If so, he really knows his stuff. But like most stuff like this, it's over in a flash. I'm thinking Is the FBI here yet? How much hard time could I get for listening to a three minute song?

The FBI did visit me one time and it was enough to scare me straight. I myself hadn't done anything wrong, but they were interviewing everyone in the neighborhood as to what they knew or didn't know about a particular individual. And when they knew or didn't know whatever it was. I gave them only the facts, hoping none of it would come back to haunt me on the witness stand in months to come, that I in fact didn't know anything about the person or the matters involved in whatever case it was they were investigating, which I still don't know. Maybe he had a big record collection and they put 2 and 2 together.

It was a valuable experience for me, because it gave me a definite fear of the FBI (1), and additionally it taught me to keep my curtains closed and to try not to know anything about anyone. To this day if I'm anywhere and I hear people talking about anything, I put my fingers in my ears and loudly go, "La la la!" And now here I sit with all these cheap CDs warning me about the FBI, whose agents might actually be able to hear them playing even through the thick curtains. They do have one of those "Big Ears" that you see at football games.

DISCLAIMER: Everything written in this blog post is for entertainment purposes only. I don't actually have any CDs nor do I listen to them.

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