Re: The fallacy of shared aesthetic interests

1

I know someone who thinks there's no such thing as music without vocals. Which is to say, the word "music" by definition, means singing (accompanied by some other sounds). If there's no singing, you can't call it music. So what do you call it? She had some trouble understanding the question, but eventually decided, "like, soundtrack?" I think she really believes that classical, (instrumental) jazz, etc. are only created as soundtracks for movies. Which is only true in the case of Loony Tunes, of course.


Posted by: bingobangoboy | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 2:16 AM
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how authentic.


Posted by: yoyo | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 4:32 AM
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1: I would say that the only excuse for the existence of the Ring Cycle is that it contains one (1) actual tune, which was subsequently used in "Apocalypse Now".


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 4:46 AM
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The idea of going on a date with a guy who tests you with a track to find out if you're really compatible or not is my nightmare. On the other hand, it works! I am not compatible with someone who would sit me down and say, pointedly, "What do you think of this?"


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 5:05 AM
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That is, of course, different from someone playing you something he likes because he wants you to get to know him and liking music is important to him. Fine. Potentially annoying, depending on the music, but fine.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 5:06 AM
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Just to tease nosflow, we'll have to refer to this.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 5:09 AM
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The idea of going on a date with a guy who tests you with a track to find out if you're really compatible or not is my nightmare.

"OK, AWB, you're in a desert walking along in the sand when all of the sudden you look down, and you see a tortoise, it's crawling toward you. You reach down, you flip the tortoise over on its back. The tortoise lays on its back, its belly baking in the hot sun, beating its legs trying to turn itself over, but it can't, not without your help. But you're not helping. Why is that? Nice dress, incidentally."


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 5:21 AM
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6: Heh. Indeed.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 5:50 AM
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I, of course, put no value at all on aesthetic interests, shared or otherwise.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 5:52 AM
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The tortoise is God?


Posted by: Awl | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 5:52 AM
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I have found that dating on the basis of shared aesthetic interests does not prevent being treated like shit. As far as my aesthetic requirements go, I prefer to watch movies with people who don't talk a lot during them, and don't get apocalyptically angry if they don't enjoy them. (It's OK not to like things!) But most of those preferences are more about temperament and character than about what objects, specifically, they like. If someone has a really short attention span or is generally ignorant and uninterested in things, those aren't just aesthetic problems.

OK, maybe I would have a problem seriously dating someone who intensely enjoyed The Corrections, but it would depend on how good the sex is.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 6:14 AM
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For our third date, I took Molly to see gastr del sol. The set consisted of a single piece for several electric guitars that changed about as rapidly as a Steve Reich piece. (I've never heard it on any album since. One of the recurring motifs in it was the three note NBC theme song) Retrospectively, I realize that this served as a sort of screening test. Many people who are not aesthetically or romantically compatible with me would have bailed quite early in the date. At the time, though, I just wanted to see the band.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 6:47 AM
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12: At least it wasn't a case of "if she's really into me, she'll endure this". Not love, quoth he, but vanity sets love a task like that.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 6:52 AM
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Really, there was no vanity to it. The question was "what do you want to do tonight" and that was the answer that sounded best. I can't remember the name of the club, but I think I later saw the Vadermark 5 there.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 7:00 AM
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I think it's nice to share your taste in things with the attitude of "Maybe you will like this! It is something I like!"


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 7:01 AM
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There was an idiotic woman (American I'm afraid) who made a living for years out of writing articles for the Guardian about how British men didn't get it (anything). On one occasion she was mortally affronted because some guy had taken her to see Atanarjuat at the point it was winning a major award roughly every week. She characterised it as "an obscure, boring art movie". How stupid he was (she wrote, at £20 a word) to take a cultural journalist to see the most fashionable film in town! (Note careful use of exclamation point there.)

Sometimes you can't win.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 7:14 AM
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14: oh, absolutely. Didn't mean to imply there was.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 7:21 AM
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Shared aesthetic tastes are, of course, massively over-rated. But one of the best first dates I ever went on was one of those moments when you suddenly realize that the person you are talking to has not only heard of the same obscure shit as you, but has a fully articulated and interesting opinion on it.

In practice agreeing to differ on lots of things is cool, but no Daily Mail readers. Or people who read misery porn [Pelzer, et al].


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 7:32 AM
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19

I read this post as a cry for help. We're here for you, neb.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 7:36 AM
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20

What's so bad about Corrections? I haven't read it myself, but that seems a bit extreme.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 9:01 AM
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20: There was a long-ish thread here a while back in which AWB and DS hotly debated what was and wasn't (respectively) wrong with it.

My experience searching the archives here lately has been a bust, so I'm not going to try at the moment.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 9:52 AM
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20 - It's lazy and misogynistic?


Posted by: snarkout | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 10:07 AM
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I think this is the Corrections thread.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 10:12 AM
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"Out to lunch" is overrated. It has got a good album cover though.


Posted by: lemmy caution | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 11:04 AM
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25

Scoff.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 11:12 AM
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26

If you want to sort by favorite books, you can get it over with beforehand.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 08-26-10 1:39 PM
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27

Ugh, the second guy down on that page lists The Unbearable Lightness of Being.

I love how Milan Kundera interjects the narration with bits of thought provoking insights.

I once went on an internet date with a guy -- a former student of Czech history -- who specifically mentioned in his profile that he hated Kundera. Unfortunately when we tried to talk about our shared dislike on the date, this guy was quite put off when I said that my distaste for Kundera is a direct result of the gratuitous misogyny in his books. I couldn't ever quite pin him down on what he thought Kundera's problem is. 'Overrated' or something like that.


Posted by: Blume | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 6:18 AM
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27: Ha! I went on a similarly misguided internet date, and in person he revealed that the reason he disliked The Unbearable Lightness of Being was that, well, actually, he never finished it, because he could tell it was going to have a sad ending, and he doesn't read those.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 6:25 AM
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I don't know how you could fail to finish The Unbearable Lightness of Being. All the way through you're saying, "Christ, this can't get any worse, can it?" And then you turn the page and it does. Hypnotic.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 6:31 AM
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27: relevant
http://idlewords.com/2005/11/dating_without_kundera.htm


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 6:36 AM
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1st guy on my list says of 100 Years of Solitude: "Marquez expertly captures how a lifetime of heat and humidity affects human behavior."

So that's what he was on about.


Posted by: mcmc | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 6:37 AM
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re: 27- 29

I first read it in Amsterdam, on a happily wasted holiday aged 18. At the time I really liked it, possibly helped by the fact that it made a very attractive Israeli-American girl glom onto me and my mate for a couple of days. In retrospect, not so great.

I think a lot of Czechs don't like Kundera [exile, doesn't write in Czech, over-rated etc]. Probably more cred-points if you drop Hrabal's name.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 6:49 AM
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Sure, at 18 I thought it was brilliant. I was sad to see how bad it was when I read it again later. Then I assigned it to a group of freshmen as something to read for an oral exam, and they LOVED it. I think it's one of those things you have to be 18-19 to enjoy.


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 6:55 AM
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34

30 to 32.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 7:04 AM
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35

32. Where's a good place to start with Hrabal? I saw the movie of Closely Observed Trains as a teenager and loved it, though I've no idea if I still would. Is that a good entry point?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 7:10 AM
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re: 35

To be honest, I wouldn't really know. I'm familiar with him mostly through that film, as well. My wife has recommended I Served the King of England, though.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 7:12 AM
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Probably more cred-points if you drop Hrabal's name.

Woohoo!


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 7:48 AM
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38

I have fond memories of Kundera, but I don't think I've read anything by him since my early twenties. My favorite was Laughter and Forgetting.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 8:41 AM
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38: Mine too. Haven't read it or him since 1992.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 8:46 AM
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I had "The Joke" on my bookshelf throughout college. It wasn't even an attempt to look cool either, it was one of a couple dozen loaners from my dad. Probably should have at least tried to read it.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 8:47 AM
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Ditto ditto, or something. I remember really liking Laughter and Forgetting, but read it at age 21.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 8:50 AM
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I think the only other Czech literature I've tried is The Good Soldier Sveijk, which was great but I got tired of about halfway through and haven't gone back to.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 8:55 AM
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The Good Soldier Sveijk would be on the shortlist if I was told to pick 10 books for the rest of my life.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 9:24 AM
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I think the only other Czech literature I've tried is The Good Soldier Sveijk, which was great but I got tired of about halfway through and haven't gone back to.

Don't worry, the author didn't finish it either.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 9:29 AM
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"Marquez expertly captures how a lifetime of heat and humidity affects human behavior."

Vecino, por favor. The guy's last name (even leaving aside the accent, 'cause, hey, why be a pedant?) is Garcia Marquez.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 10:22 AM
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I, too, have abandoned Svejk. Oh well.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 10:38 AM
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I have only read an abridged/edited version. Which I guess works out the same.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 10:40 AM
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30: Huh, that's the same guy who did the scurvy post. I had seen it before, but hadn't realized that.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 10:46 AM
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I should reread Svejk since at age twelve I was probably was a bit young for it. The one thing that stuck was that if you try to get out of the army you'll get constant enemas.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 10:54 AM
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I liked Laughter and Forgetting a lot too. I don't have the patience to re-read books just to dislike them.


Posted by: lemmy caution | Link to this comment | 08-27-10 1:56 PM
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