Wednesday, January 31, 2007

The Cat's in Heat, but the Music's Fine

And no I don't mean me. I mean it literally. The normally docile, quiet puffball of a cat in my house is yowling uncontrollably and making me want to lock her in a room for the next 4 days. I love my roommate. He's a good friend. But damn if I don't wish his cat would vaporize right now. If he'd actually ever bred her like he intended, maybe I'd be more forgiving, but after an 11-hour work day, I don't want the cat slinking after me making hideous noises that remind me of horror movies.

Speaking of horrors... my thing to hate today is those god damn dancing silhouettes that pop up everywhere online these days as part of "lower mortgage" offers. In Yahoo! news stories, next to my Hotmail inbox, and so on. I literally had a dream that I encountered a dancing silhouette with the dollar amount $150,000 scrawled acoss it. I'd like to think I impaled it with something and vanquished it a la bad-ass Sigourney Weaver in "Aliens." But I woke up. And was totally annoyed.

Thankully, some things turn up in life that make the annoyances feel smaller. I saw Bruce and Chris for the first time in months over the weekend and I finally took Bruce a mix CD I'd had sitting on my computer for weeks. I'd meant to give it to him when he left his job at The Advocate...oh, 3 months ago. I didn't even give him a play list or name it, let alone create a cover for it--all of which I usually do when I give people CDs. But Bruce had been sounding less than chipper and I just hoped it would cheer him up a little.

The background here is that Bruce was my first "professional boss," in the summer of 1995 at Out magazine when it was still based in SoHo. I had been in Manhattan 2 months and was determined to work in the gay media. I interned for Bruce while working full time at Starbucks. In the process, I learned a shitload about writing and editing. And simultaneously I subjected Bruce to all of my music--eagerly bringing in the new CDs I purchased when I could: Throwing Muses' "University," The Amps' "Pacer," Bjork's "Post," and so on... indie rock, girl rock, obscure, odd pop. And Bruce always listened. Even if he hated something he still listened. And I learned then--as well as during the year I would live with him when Chris had moved to L.A.--what Bruce liked.

Flash forward over 11 years and I hand him a 19-song CD and get the best email I've received in a while about it: "Thank you thank you x 19 for the CD! It's amazing."

There was much more in the email, of course--much that reminded me what an effect music has on people, how much I like assembling sonic collages for people I care about, and why Bruce and I get along so well.

Thinking about it right now makes the horrible howling coming from downstairs a tad more tolerable.

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