sophcw at gmail dot com
Scrape your knee, it's only skin.
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Cobain said that he missed the comfort in being sad. And when his visage is presented as an emblem, someone else is, in a very small way, wallowing in that comfort. But he was a guy— a talented guy— but in the end just a guy. We think he was a good guy but we really have no idea; we know he was a drug addict and that he abandoned his family, but many of us overlook that because we think we understand his pain, and who are we to judge. But of course, we can’t do the same for people in our own lives. Forgiveness in real life is much harder and more complicated, which is another alluring thing about interfacing to an iconic image: We get to practice feelings when the stakes are low.
When I ask someone, ‘What have you been listening to?’ I’m trying to learn something about them. The one-line ‘This is my jam’ approach is useless to me, because your relationship to the song in question— beyond the fact that you like it and want to share it— is completely unknown. The fact that someone would find music interesting purely by virtue of the fact that I am listening to it is foreign to me. What I listen to does not seem notable; why I listen to it might be. I need context.