Life on the Other Side of Sex, Drugs, and Rock and Roll, Redacted
Much like the band, my post about the Chili Peppers won’t go away. It got kicked back into circulation a few weeks ago, this time because the Chili Peppers were on a list of artists a women’s advocacy group demanded Spotify remove from promotional playlists. Outrage once again ensued.
I woke up one morning to an onslaught of insults. As always, I shrugged them off. People feel deeply connected to the bands they love, and who among us would not call a person who feels differently a disgusting, abhorred, disgraceful cunt? It’s not surprising that people lash out when their heroes are discredited. I find it odd that Chili Peppers fans are unaware of the band’s attitude toward women, given their history, but I find it equally odd that they have fans in the first place, given their music. Of course, that’s only my opinion, and I am a disgrace to music, to greatness, and all of humanity.
I deal with the aggrieved citizens of the internet by pretending they don’t exist. It’s both a choice and a necessity. I don’t have the bandwidth to tune out strangers on the web when I’ve got real-life people to ignore. It takes effort! I have to be careful not to miss out on joy because I’m engrossed in avoiding irritation, and I have to remember that if I look away from every annoyance, I cast aside opportunities for delight. Once I was so busy ignoring the millenials on 3rd Street that I almost missed seeing a guy in a Young the Giant t-shirt walk into a utility pole. I can’t let that happen again.
I tried to be a person who doesn’t give a fuck. I thought I pulled it off when I worked in the music industry, but I doubt I had anyone fooled –if you lose your shit over a secondary paper in a tertiary market misquoting Mike Ness, or regard anything related to Pearl Jam as critical, you suffer from an overabundance of fucks. Eventually I decided to accept that I am who I am, and I am calm only when sedated. I’m sensitive to a fault, I make mountains out of molehills, and I sweat the small stuff hard. I embraced the practice of not thinking and avoidance because not giving a fuck was out of reach.
I have yet to acquire the serenity to accept the things I cannot change — the excruciating nature of existence, the unchangeable anguish of the past, and the inexplicable skin around my knees are among the many unavoidables I just don’t think about. Thankfully, I can now dismiss the disturbing eventualities without conscious effort. I’m convinced it’s a gift of evolution; as our lifespan has increased, not thinking has become instinctual, an intellectual mechanism to survive the rigor of age. It’s possible that I believe this because of a genetic predisposition to the memory loss symptomatic of Alzheimer’s Disease.
I realize that making more jokes about the Chili Peppers was unnecessary, and I know I may have again angered their fan. If that’s the case, I hope he leaves a comment! I haven’t been called a disgrace since I was in my 20s, and it’s a delight to feel young again.