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2008-01-25 - 4:56 p.m.

We're seeing the Fiery Furnaces tonight. I hope they convince me that I should, after all, like them a little bit. I feel like I'm not all that cool when it comes to my musical tastes. I don't like the bands that the Hott Music Blogs like. I know people dig on the Animal Collective, but I do not. For example, I just bought a record by this indie rock band Minus the Bear and after two solid listens, I have to say that they do very little for my insides. I don't respond to them. I don't hate them or anything. It sounds like music that's very technically proficient but that's been bled dry. Talking about music like this also feels like splitting hairs. Two weeks ago, I hadn't heard of this band and now I'm straight dissing their stuff. Music is so personal and finds its fans and leaves others cold. I'm always amazed when I talk to someone who has an album I own or who is a big fan of something I like and their favorite songs and mine just don't match up. Part of it is this: My musical taste gets threatened, as in, could I be wrong about the three songs I like so much? And then: Shit, now I have to give these other songs another listen because I could be wrong and now I don't have this album all figured out after all. I don't know. Indie rock makes me a little nervous. Sometimes I just want to hole up with my scratched old copies of Led Zeppelin and A Tribe Called Quest albums, drink coffee, and watch the traffic go by.

This is turning into a negative one, but, anyway,

Dear Tom Robbins, author of Still Life with Woodpecker,

I've tried, but I'm just not getting it, bro.

Someone Who Would Like to Understand Why a Bunch of His Friends Likes You

Cool news: The editor of the literary journal at the University of Illinois wrote today asking if the theater department there could produce and perform a dramatic interpretation of one of my personal essays. Topher Grace is the celebrity who I guess most resembles me but I could also go for any member of the Wu-Tang Clan. I'd prefer Raekwon (the Chef).

I'm looking forward to not working tomorrow, to getting up and having coffee, to lying around after that, to taking a hot shower while it's cold outside, to listening to NPR while in the shower, to drinking orange juice, to drinking more coffee, to walking around the corner for some kind of delicate sandwich, and also to the feel of cold air on the insides of my nostrils. I resolve to be aware of that feeling.

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