Help! I’m pussywhipped!
“The man in today’s scenario not only knows how to listen, sympathize, look after a baby, and leave the seat down, but he can now add baking to his list of female-friendly skills. Yesterday he actually managed to bake a loaf of bread, an essential survival skill in this age of nanotechnology. Never mind that he didn’t knead the dough for long enough, so it almost totally failed to form a bread-like consistency. Never mind that he left the dough to rise for too long, so that it collapsed during baking. Next time, get a mixer with a dough hook, dude: the result can be called a noble failure, falling somewhere between bread and cake, like a light Irish soda bread without the dryness or the bicarbonate-of-soda taste, very edible and rather nice when served warm with corned beef and yoghurt mayonnaise.”
OK, enough of the third-person for one day. Half a loaf is better than no bread, and the remaining half will probably be gone by tonight, after I hit the deli for some pastrami or honey-roasted ham. Apart from the baking, trips to the bank and the centre of Dublin, I’ve spent the last couple of days pottering around, and this weekend I have the place to myself, since my flatmate is off home to Tipperary for a long weekend. Because Dublin centre is now so close to where I live, I’ve already made unnecessary trips, wondering what to do when I got there. There’s an experimental music gig on there later, just the kind of thing I’m in the mood for, and so what if it goes on till late? It’s not like I’ve been getting up early this week.
I found an old MP3 CD of mine while looking through my flatmate’s CD collection, so I have a real nostalgia trip going on while I’m typing this: Hunting High And Low by A-ha, the strange Norwegian pop stars who burst on to the scene with this album just over 20 years ago, starting with the infectious single Take On Me. The album was part of my general musical awakening during the mid 80’s, alongside 90125 by Yes, OMD’s Architecture And Morality, and others. I didn’t know much about synthesis then, but today I hear the Yamaha DX7 all over it, a instrument whose twentieth anniversary was celebrated last year, one as important to synthesis as the Fender Stratocaster was as a guitar.
A couple of years ago I wrote an essay on secure music, about my attitude towards music downloading, and last night on CNBC a music industry representative was asked why it was still so expensive – which it is, in my opinion. He tried to explain the pricing in terms of a shift away from albums back towards individual tracks. I’m not buying that, and I wrote a little more on the topic, enough to deserve a page of its own: see albums vs. singles.