Thursday, September 08, 2005


Imagine a blog devoted entirely to excuses why the blogger couldn't update...
The thing is, I got nothing. Everything that could be said about Katrina has been said better than I could, and writing about anything else feels cheap. I was at the bus stop today reading Spin's article on Franz Ferdinand and could barely hold in the, "Who cares?" that I wanted to yell out when I came face to face with the reality of where the drunken antics of rock semi-stars really fits in the eschelons of worldly importance. Consider my life and the would-be rock semi-star antics that it's based on and understand the worldshakingness of that realization. Consider a generation raised in these solipsistic decades under fallen-out hippies and the media empire they've built, and understand how the men who run this country can create this most fecund ground for a revolution without worry, because that revolution simply will not come. Understand how the task of processing tragedy via art will fall yet again into the wrinkling hands of Don Henley, how our demographic's yelps of outrage will inspire nothing more than another night of attempted dancefloor hookups, remixed and unimportant. We've embraced and recombined the aesthetics of all the most revolutionary musical movements since 1962 and shorn them of their revolutionary power by thinking the aesthetics alone can communicate our outrage, but our songs don't dare, don't confront, and end up little more than advertisements for hairstyles. For the first time in my life I kind of respect Conor Oberst and the yelps of outrage that he's been putting on wax, because crafting articulate lines about inarticulate frustration is unfashionable and great. Yelling shit of importance out into the cavernous echo chamber of American youth apathy is worth something, even if, in the end, it does about as much good as the "No War" button that's holding up my bedroom curtain.
What we need is an anthem. Is there going to be a "Kent, Ohio" for every black man whose liberation at the hands of soldiers came by a bullet instead of a seat on a bus? For every black woman raped in the essential hours wasted by uncaring, powerful men? The refugees being sent to detainment camps in Oklahoma, finally on paper as second-class citizens instead of just informally, will they have a song? I will try to write one for them, but I am not a great artist. I'm not sure that anyone else right now is either.

No comments: