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Soundtrack: We're Leveling, Not Lunatics

Posted by Ben Collins, Today's Soundtrack  September 20, 2010 05:28 PM

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The recession has been over for a long while, apparently. The recession is over, and it was Paris Hiltonís cocaine all along.

Thereís one of those email forwards going around that isnít racist enough to be appropriately popular. So maybe you havenít seen it. Itís Hugo Chavez leaning into Vladimir Putin, and he's saying this: ďWhatís the difference between Americans and yogurt? If you leave yogurt alone for 200 years, itíll grow a culture.Ē

And I laugh a little at it, but Iím not sure how true it is anymore. Seems like everything was going fine -- we were the mass-market boundary-pushing, brainstorm capital of the world, but then we ran out of money.

Actually, make that this: We are the mass-market boundary-pushing, brainstorm capital of the world, even still, and we ran out of money.

A couple of weeks ago, a woman who was awarded with two perfectly catchy hit singles by a knowing Hollywood songwriter wore a dress entirely made of raw meat to an awards show.

Instead of going through the prescribed forms of media disgust, almost everyone ignored her.

But some didnít. Some asked if it was itchy. Some asked, ďCan we have some?Ē

Finally, we are leveling.

We pushed the boundaries in one direction and we ran out of money on the other, but that became too exhausting.

It was Paris Hiltonís cocaine, but weíre through with disgust. Sheís a lunatic, lunatic, lunatic, and now weíre wondering, ďHey, is everything all right?Ē

Iím not an economist, but I can tell you, finally: We are leveling.

Ignore the fringe, of course. Because a few thousand young people are going to D.C. in a couple of weeks, and their primary concern is to pick up the trash behind them.

"Whatís the difference between Americans and yogurt? One's tasty fermented milk; the other tends to be pretty polite."

It doesn't push many boundaries and it's not as funny. It's also probably the truth about this coming generation.

Thereís a little sample in this song. Maybe it was written by this band. Maybe itís lodged deep somewhere in the Autobiography of Malcolm X. Maybe itís by some hippie Iíd never get along with. I canít find its origin, but it sounds authoritative. It should be.

Brothers and sisters, sometimes you feel like you can't succeed, and Iím here to tell you that you're probably right.

But if you stay strong, everything will be all right.

Today's Soundtrack: Margot & the Nuclear So and So's - Lunatic, Lunatic, Lunatic

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About the author

Ben Collins can't help but search beyond Feist for the zeitgeist of Today's Soundtrack, his pick of a song or songs capturing the mood or events of the moment. His musical tastes vary from Strawberry Fields to The Magnetic Fields, from Low to Skee-Lo. A North Shore native, Ben has worked at The Boston Globe and Spin and is an Emerson grad. Make your own nominations to him at ben.t.collins@comcast.net or on Twitter @globesoundtrack. More »

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