Friday, January 16, 2009

Andre 3000

Have you heard of this guy Andre 3000? I haven't. Outkast, yes. Andre 3000 - nope. Wouldn't know him if I saw him. And I didn't know his name in the midst of a group of people today at happy hour. For so long, I was used to being the youngest member of a group. That switch has flipped, clearly. I wish I could say that I'm not as hip as I used to be. Trouble is I was never hip. Ever.

The conversation then switched to movies. I had mentioned that I just saw Crash on DVD and loved it. For this I was slaughtered by nearly everyone in the group. They hated the movie - they thought it was narrow-minded and too precious. "No one talks like that or thinks like that." "Could you make a more predictable movie?" Yikes. I was not in friendly waters.

So then we switched to books and someone said they were in the middle of A Thousand Splendid Suns, which I just finished. Finally - someone I can relate to! I said how much I enjoyed the book and also loved The Kite Runner (same author). Nope - I was the odd one out again. "That would never happen." "What an unrealistic story." "Too perfect an ending for my liking." Ouch. Ouch. Ouch. And then they all left in a rush. I guess my taste in music, movies, and books cleared the room. 

Needlesstosay, I was happy to get away from those people and back to my cozy apartment among my books and music and movies that I love. (And incidentally, ones that many others love as well - Crash won 3 Oscars including one for best picture and both A Thousand Splendid Suns and The Kite Runner were best-sellers before they even went on sale to the public.) With that crowd, no wonder so many people didn't come out for happy hour. They knew better given the company. Have any of these people read a newspaper, traveled outside of New York City, or even just learned to be polite? My guess is no. A resounding "no". So while I felt bad about myself on the subway ride home, I was also reminded that we all have to howl if we want to find our pack. Clearly, that bunch is not my pack. I better spend my time elsewhere, and that is helpful information to have. 


Jeremy said...

Lots of us NY-ers hate to be perceived as liking anything "mainsstream". We have phrases like "flyover states" to separate us from the rest of the country and the world.

Although a lot of tastemakers, game changers and thought leaders live here, thats not a reason to mock necessarily.

Also it seems that you, like me, dont believe in the concept of a guilty pleasure.

Like what you like, if others judge, its their problem.

Christa said...

Hi Jeremy,
Thanks for the comment. I totally agree. Somehow anything main stream or even popular by any standard gets a connotation here in NYC of not being worthwhile. People are trying so hard to be different and unique that they shun anything that appeals to many people on many levels.