Sunday, March 22, 2020

I'm so tired. I just deleted my Facebook account, my Twitter account, my Nextdoor account, my FetLife account, and my OKCupid account. People fucking suck. You all fucking suck. I get out there and I try to be supportive, and I get nothing. I get out there and make comments, and I'm either treated like I'm a fucking nobody or like I'm the enemy. Yes, I'm sorry, I'm a middle aged white guy, I didn't fucking ask to be born in 1967 to white parents. My bad. Mom was a damned librarian and taught me how to think, and I realized early on that someone wasn't evil because they had dark skin and their name was Lopez. Whatever, doesn't matter. Was that person a dick? Yes, then they were a dick, don't like them. No? Fine, maybe I can be friends with them, if, you know, friendship happened. Can't force it, that's not how friends work.

But now, I mention something, I'm apparently not politically correct enough, and I'm the enemy, because, you know, I didn't know what it was like growing up black, or Hispanic, or female. You know what? No, I didn't know what that was like, but I try to treat everyone like I would like to be treated, that's how I was raised by my mom. And you know what, some of you "open-minded" people are fucking dicks.

Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Time lapse

So a friend of mine and I were talking about life, "the kids these days," and music. He's about my age, a little younger. I was born in late 1967, so currently I'm 52. He's not quite 50 yet, I think he's 49. But he was absolutely flabbergasted that a 20-something year old guy he worked with didn't know who the Rolling Stones are. Now, in his defense, I would have been a bit taken aback, as well, since the Stones are still out there doing their thing half a million years after the last of them should have keeled over. But, this certainly isn't their heyday.

And, hey, I'm a dork. I write Excel macros for fun. So I took a little bit of my screen real estate and wrote up a little formula. I put my date of birth, approximately, and the beginning date of each decade following (not counting 1970, since that was only two years after I was born) across the top. I picked two dates which were very important historical milestones which were still considered quite relevant when I was growing up: Pearl Harbor and Armistice Day, the end of World War I. I added those dates to my column.

Just for reference, Pearl Harbor to me was an event that I read about regularly in my history classes. I knew people who vaguely remembered it as children, remembered the actual wartime panic, the chaos in the country. By the time I was in my teens, people who had actually fought in World War II, some of whom had been at Pearl Harbor and other important battles of the war, were in their 50s. My age range as I write this. Not so old that they were senescent, able to tell me their actual memories of those events and the aftermath.

Folks who had lived through the end of World War I were significantly older, obviously. Those people who were old enough to fight in the battles were born around the turn of the 20th century, and by the time I was old enough to have an interest in those events, many of those people were well up into their 70s.

In addition to writing silly Excel macros for amusement, I'm also a musician, and I enjoy studying the history of music, hence my conversation about the Rolling Stones and millenials. So I have a decent idea of Glenn Miller, the Andrews Sisters, Les Brown. Once you get back into the roaring 20s, I have less of a grasp on who were the real heavyweights of the music industry. Oh, I can go look up some names and I'm probably familiar with some of them, but they don't just come right to memory. So, that was kind of my perspective when putting together this spreadsheet.


So, what does all that mean? It means that someone who was born in 2000, so someone who is currently old enough to vote and have a job at this point in their life, would see 1973, the heyday of the Rolling Stones, in much the same perspective that I see Pearl Harbor, the heyday of the Big Bands. You can make your own additional observations based on the snippet of sheet that I pasted above. I don't have a real point to make with this, just wanted to kind of put that out there, because I hear those kinds of things a lot. "How can they not know who Jimi Hendrix is?" vs. "Who the hell is Jimmy Hendricks?"