From about 14 years old I was insistent that I needed to be different. I started to wear bellbottoms and t-shirts advocating causes - Earth Day, vegetarianism, Save the Trees, that sort of thing. We shall put aside just for a moment that I wasn't even a vegetarian, though I did dabble with pescetarianism for a couple of weeks after I met a cute vegan boy. I felt I could give up red meat and chicken, but couldn't deal with the thought of my beloved crabmeat and lobster being taken away. It was my idea of a compromise.
I made mix tapes for friends based on music I heard on 120 Minutes (R.I.P.), REM being one of the mainstays. I no doubt had to save up a few weeks' worth of babysitting money in order to afford the bright yellow, translucent cassette tape which quickly became, and remains, one of my favourite albums ever. I played the shit out of that thing, spending quite a few nights sitting in the dark listening to it and wondering why I couldn't meet a boy who was quite as clever and gifted with words as Michael Stipe.
Imagine my glee at being led to this courtesy of Jen at Fertility Now. Upon discovery, I plopped the child before the laptop, fully expecting her to possessed by the devils of dance as soon as the video started because sister loooooves to dance. Rather than being enraptured by the combination of the Muppets and a band so integral to her mother's adolescence, P ran away to play with a sock. Sigh. My heart, it was crushed. I thought about some sort of isolation torture exposure, a la locking her in a windowless room strapped to a chair with the video put on loop for hours on end, its flickering image reflected in the goggles I forced her to wear to enhance the experience. For whatever reason I picture her wearing goggles, it seems to fit the vision so much better. Not swimming goggles, but more like WWII aviation goggles:
Yeah, I don't know why either.
Incidentally, if any of you do like REM and aren't too busy listening to Rod Stewart or some such, the fabulous music blog Stereogum has compiled a tribute album to celebrate this momentous occasion. It's free to download and certainly worth a casual listen.
So for those of you who don't click away as soon as I say the word "music", what music framed your adolescence?