Life on the Other Side of Sex, Drugs, and Rock and Roll
I’m writing out of spite. I’m demonstrating exactly the juvenescence that I was accused of yesterday, when, in an impromptu exit interview, my former housemate Bette told me I was significantly less mature than the average 14-year-old. I was upset, but I shouldn’t have been: I am significantly less mature than the average 14-year-old, and, more importantly, I don’t take Bette seriously. I can’t. Bette’s a middle-aged* woman who listens to One Direction, Nicki Minaj and Carly Rae Jepson.
“I choose to listen to music that makes me happy,” Bette told me once, explaining that her decision to listen to up-with-people pop was part of her noble commitment to emotional well-being. She might have redeemed herself with that one if not for this: back when she was angry, she listened to angry music, and, predictably, the band she liked best was Limp Bizkit.
During the first few months we lived together, I was able to restrain myself. I limited my commentary to the non-verbal — adolescent rolled eyes and the occasional childish smirk — and focused instead on Bette’s positive qualities, which include nice hair. It worked until last weekend, when Bette played a song that may or may not have been about a pretty princess. “Are you fucking kidding me?” I said, miming a gun to my head, which, in my defense, was considerably less hostile than aiming an imaginary firearm at hers.
And that was that. Any possibility of peacefully coexisting was shot to hell, and my relationship with Bette, who I genuinely liked, kinda, was destroyed because, when it comes to music, I can’t keep my pie-hole shut. (It’s not a new problem, and it’s not just that I have a hard time liking people who listen to stupid music. It’s also that I like people who don’t. I once dated a homeless guy because he liked Tom Waits.)
I no longer have to listen to Bette singing “Umbrella-Ella-Ella” in the shower because I moved; the house we were living in was sold, and, as of now, I’m crashing with my friends Andrea and Lucy. They have a guest room, but even if I was sleeping on their back porch I’d be happy about it: when I woke up this morning, Andrea was blasting the Beasties.
Someday, I’ll learn not to judge people based on their taste in music, but thankfully, I don’t have to do it today. I have other character defects to correct, and clearly, a lot of growing up to do.
*Bette’s not quite middle-aged. I only wrote that because, on the off-chance that she’s reading this, it’ll piss her off. Nah nah nah nah nah nah.