The Job, The Collection, and “The Suburbs”

There’s been a lot rumbling around the back of my mind the past couple weeks, and seemingly no time to really get it down. I’m well into the new job at the call center. We’re about halfway through the training, and our group is in its second day in taking calls from customers.

Our trainer often tells a story about helping an older woman work down her bill from something insanely high full of features she didn’t need, down to something manageable that enabled her to spend more money on medication and food. I don’t want to get into how messed up that is, I’ve ranted enough about our system the past few weeks. . .

Moving on, the cynical part of me would roll my eyes (and other parts would rail against the necessity of it of what he did) until this evening. This evening, I took a call and worked out what I could to help a guy get his bill down. He’d been having trouble paying it, constantly behind. Even if it was just a little reduction, and one time, I felt good for doing it.

It was not quiet the satisfaction I had helping people get some kind of work through Labor Ready, but it was something. It made me wonder if it really is worth the aggravation–especially since K. will be joining me at the call center with in a few weeks.

I have also been organizing my mp3 collection. I have finally tallied it up and have been putting order to the chaos of my old filing system. I find that as I go, I wind up deleting quite a bit. I have been genuinely wondering how much music do I really need, and how serious I am about my music collection.

I feel like I have heard it all. Is it because I’m getting older, or have I really started hearing it all.  I am finding that I only listen to about twenty or thirty albums seriously, only a handful of bands, and the rest I only barely remember ever listening to. Some, I know I acquired for pure academic reasons, but I’m going through and deleting.

I am also discovering that the music I listened to and discovered in high school is the stuff that I cannot really live without. Is it nostalgia, or do I still really love this stuff? I have been discovering that as I re-listen to a lot it, I feel I understand it more than I ever did ten/fifteen years ago. I have been there, bands like Pearl Jam really did capture that indescribable something. However, the older I get, the more The Smashing Pumpkins sound lyrically hokey.

I guess that’s life and getting older.

In the midst of all this musical musing, I heard that Arcade Fire won a the best album Grammy for “The Suburbs.” K and I have listened to them since their first big American release “Funeral,” and can modestly call ourselves fans. (She a bit moreso than myself, however). I was a bit surprised and pleased a band I like has gotten that kind of recognition. It does not happen much.

Now, I know I will not bother to do the research, but I do wonder if they won because their fan base finally reached an age where they have the disposable income to buy their records. Does this mean I’m getting old? Or does it mean the music industry has finally begun to settle out after the shake up from the mp3 revolution.

Either way, its pretty kick ass for Arcade Fire. They probably deserved it for “Neon Bible” more, but its cool they were got it for “The Suburbs.”

Finally, the existence of a new Radiohead release finally has me excited about music again. Well, that and how my new phone is the best mp3 player I’ve ever owned.

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