Thursday, July 1, 2010

Meowable Song...And a Moment of Shame

For today's Meowable Song, I have chosen something of high sentiment a bit beyond the scope of my personal sharing range.

When I was a very young child and shed the early childhood music of Raffi and Sesame Street Disco, I soon discovered that I had a passion for instrumental anthems. The most monumental anthem of the early 80s and of my early childhood development was written by truly gifted musician. In 1982 this music won awards and acclaim around the world. And at three-years of age, I had truly discovered that the synthesizer was an amazing instrument.

If you haven't figured out that I am talking about the Chariots of Fire Soundtrack, then I forgive, for this is probably the most influential album in my entire life. My parents owned the LP and I always requested they play it over and over and over. The very first cassette that I ever owned which went along with my first Sony Walkman was this soundtrack. I played the cassette until it chewed itself up and spit itself out in a spaghetti tangle of magnetic tape.

And when I started to discover women, I felt that this album, on vinyl, would be one of the tools of wooing. Alas, no one told me the ways of courtship and how flawed my thinking actually was as a young college kid with a turntable.

I remember the evening very clearly. After hanging out with a young woman I shall only refer to as S, we ended up back at my apartment to "listen to music." She sat in my Lay-z-boy recliner while I sat on the floor of my apartment sorting through my record collection looking for the right music to set the mood. Of course I chose Vangelis, what other options did I have? Jackie-O Motherfucker...No. Neil Diamond...Well, maybe. Ballad of the Green Berets...Definite Hell No... So admittedly, my vinyl collection was a little thin to necessitate a turntable, but it gave me access to the most awe inspiring songs ever written. I didn't tell S what I was going to play, I just told her, "This song is the most important song you will ever hear." I placed the needle in the groove and the pulsing single chord progression moved forward until the French horn blew threw. "Wait for it," I boldly stated, "It gets even better." As the piano began to play, she began to laugh. Not a girlish giggle, not a snicker, chortle, or  a tee-hee-you're-cute-let's-make-out-laugh, she was on the floor in tears laughing. "No, no, no, this is important." I calmly and insistently stated, as picked up the needle and started the album again. "This song is one of the most amazing things ever created." But of course, I had already fallen off of the precipice, my lady friend was too far into convulsive laughter to find Vangelis significant enough of a song for a make-out session. And I was left to reevaluate what music I used for setting moods. When the song ended, and she managed to stop laughing, S stated that was one of the funniest things she had ever seen, as if this was a well played piece of performance art or comedy. Little did she know that I was trying to impress her and failing in glorious fashion. She took off with little fanfare, and I was left with my LP of Chariots of Fire wondering where I went wrong.

Now in my defense, S was a classically trained musician, a pianist in fact. But this would not even stir her. At one point in time I wrote a song for her and tried to perform it. She was not impressed. Such is the way with things. College was a rough time for learning the hardships of courtship.

But enough of regret and shame. "Titles" by Vangelis is the feature track off of the Chariots of Fire Soundtrack. On a Meowable Scale, I give it an 11 of 10. However, on a Emasuclatron Scale, It gets a firm 15 out of 10. What is the Emasculatron Scale? Well, the Emasculatron Scale is something new, it is basically a statistically valid measurement of how emasculating an object, be it music, art, food, whatever, is. That evening and the events of it magnified by the catalyst of "Titles" makes an emasculating event measurable by the Emasculatron Scale. The following video also ranks high on the Emasculatron Scale for two reasons, one being I will never run a four-minute mile, the other, well...figure it out.

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