I recently re-watched “Reservoir Dogs.”
I dated a guy. Back a million years ago. He was a distinguished snob, kind of an early curator of pop culture. That said, I loved his taste in almost everything and a lot of it has stayed with me. None of it was very original, but I was sheltered.
He loved music and had it all on vinyl. (Of course.)
He had this B-side version of Beastie Boy’s “Root Down.” This was before music was really online, and because I was “too cool” to ask him what the song was, I bought every single CD of The Beastie Boys circa the early 90s trying to find it. I never did.
Yayz, Internets, I FOUND it today: it was the Free Zone Mix of the song. Yeah, I don’t know what that means, either. It sounds just as I remember, though. It sounds lounge-y, angst-y, urban-y, detached: definitely the male persona this guy was trying on.
Yes, I Googled him today because I am that lame. I figured that he’d be living in Bushwick, dining at Roberta’s, watching ironic screenings of “Over The Top,” but no. He sounds totally boring and normal and appears to live in a suburb, even. What a disappointment.
Anyway, he once hosted what I remember being an amazeballs party, and at one point he got on the turnstile (oh yes, he had one) and put on “Little Green Bag.” From Reservoir Dogs yes, but really this song was just a retread of the 70s, because what is pop culture, but a reinvention of the trends that have already happened, again and again and again?
When this song came on, my friend and I yelped in abandon, gave in to the happiness of it and began dancing. Soon all of those proto-hipsters at the party abandoned themselves to the song and jumped on the dining room table of this guy’s house. We all jumped up there and just danced. I think he probably played the song over a few times: the moment lasted a while.
Now that I listen, the song is oddly vulnerable. Weird. I don’t know if it’s about money or something else. Who knows.
I have avoided the Mad Men series this year (unlike Darcy), but heard “You Only Live Twice” (from the James Bond movie) playing and ran downstairs. That song! My dad let me watch the whole Bond series (pre-Roger Moore: the family only accepted Sean Connery) when I was 13 and was bed-ridden with a bad case of bronchitis. We took a trip that summer, and I remember swimming in a pool in one of those iconic motels we stayed in on our way to Idaho, where my grandparents lived. The motel was one of many that was built in the early sixties, with bright neon signs and colorful coverlets, when America was so high on itself. And I remember humming that song to myself and being so happy and restless for what was to come.
I told Darcy, “I love that song!”
He told me to shush, dismissively. “The show is almost over,” he said.
Oh, patterns. You are there, in life, if we look.
Are there songs that remind you of your past?