I am no longer pop-culturally literate. I listened to new music, though not pop. I read new books, though I haven’t delved into episodic vampire novels. It might be more accurate to say I no longer have interest in the celebration of pop culture, the accoutrement, the personalities, so forth and so on.
Part of my evolution is organic. I’m not the target demographic. Pop culture’s appeal arises out of a youthful desire to see something new and different, something young people can take ownership of, and in doing so, perhaps even ruffle the feathers people of my generation somehow acquire with age.
Part of my evolution is my comfort within my own featherless skin. I no longer feel the need to prove I’m cool because I know what “on fleek” means. By the way, “on fleek” means “on point.” Here’s a little dialogue to illustrate.
“I say old chap, have you read Jon’s latest post? It is on fleek.”
Earlier this summer I saw Bruce Springsteen’s River Tour. It is probably the twentieth Springsteen concert for me. My oldest friend Marty, who’s been my co-conspirator to at least 18 of those shows, and I opted for the mosh pit rather than assigned seats. The idea sounded great, at the time.
I was in denial, ignoring the fact we’d be standing six hours. Ignoring the arduous, and frequent hikes to the restroom. Part of me was still 25 years old and it was 1984 when Marty and I had amazing floor seats for the Born In The USA tour.
I’m not 25. I’m 58. It didn’t take long to realize I made a big mistake. Despite how close we were. Despite the great pictures I took with my iPhone. From minute one, I couldn’t wait for the concert to be over. In the past, I would not allow myself to admit I don’t enjoy large concerts. That wouldn’t be cool.
Of course, some concerts were transcendent. The Born In The USA show for example. Imagine a charismatic singer-songwriter standing on the stage in total command of 21,000 of his closest friends. We stood when he told us to. We sang along, we responded with amens of ovation after ovation. He performed for four hours and we would have been happy for four more.
Not so much anymore. With a new appreciation for my feelings, I now can see that my concert experience is a perfect example of how out of touch I was, incapable of recognizing how I felt in the moment. And even when I did recognize my feelings, I ignored them in favor of being accepted.
There are still choices I make to superficially define myself. How I dress is probably the most obvious. But I’m sure there are others. The difference now is I have more awareness of my choices and why I am making them.
Thanks for listening. Stay in touch. Connect.
P.S. Yeah, I took the picture I used today. From the mosh pit. That’s how cool I am.
P.S. A multimedia kinda post!
P.P.S. Another Almost Famous clip? Whaaaaa? Rock stars have kidnapped my son.