Saturday, 29 September 2012

A man out of time

It's been a while since I had a bit of a musical theme here, so today we're going to start off with a clip from one of my favourites:

Of course it's Elvis Costello, doing what I think is one of his greatest songs - Man out of Time.

As a writer, it's easy to hold Elvis Costello's songs in high regard - he's definitely one of the cleverest and sharpest wordsmiths around. The reason I particularly enjoy this song is because it really strikes a chord with me. I often feel like I'm a man out of time.

I reckon I feel it most strongly on the tram heading into work. I look around and there are all these people engrossed in their mobile phones. Hammering on their non-existent keyboards and staring at them as if somehow the secrets of the universe are contained on their screens. I don't get it. I don't even own a mobile phone. Does that mean there's something wrong with me - or does it just mean I'm totally not with the times.

It's not just the phone thing either. It's TV and movies and music. I have no interest in being up with the latest in any of these. Modern pop music just sounds like noise to me now - and hey, I used to love to rock out with the best of them (in my own kind of way). These days I sound a lot like my dad. It's a bit frightening.

Sometimes it makes me feel lost. I talk to people and they say, "Have you seen this?" or, "Have you heard this?" or, "Have you got the latest app?" Most of the time, I haven't got a clue what they're talking about.

But other times, it makes me feel like I've got my own place, and I'm not just following the crowd. Maybe it's a snobbish thing - I don't know.

What I do know is that I think I'll just keep on doing my own thing, listening to the music I like, and writing my own kind of stories, regardless of what is currently on the bestseller lists. I've gotten used to being a man out of time, and while it can have its disadvantages, it's mostly pretty good.

Enjoy the music. See you next time.