There Is No Cat

A huge orangupoid, which no man can conquer

Saturday, February 22, 2003

Pay attention, damnit!

The world's greatest DJ ever of all times period end of sentence I'll brook no dissent on this one I tell you, John Peel, reviews Nick Hornby's new book Songbook (which I mentioned here a few weeks ago) for UK paper The Observer. Or rather, uses it as a jumping off point to meditate on how his list would be almost completely different. But that's okay, John Peel rambling is more amusing than most other writers staying on the point. In fact, the rambling is one of the best things about listening to Peel's show on BBC Radio 1.

One thing that Peel points out in Hornby's writing that brings a smile to my face is how frustrating it is when you try to get someone else interested in a record you care passionately about, but they couldn't care less. That's kind of part of what I was getting at a couple of weeks ago when I wrote about the inability of words to accurately describe the feelings music generates. I suppose that's what makes my friendships with the other music geeks I know so precious; even if they don't share my perspective on a particular piece of music, they know the passion that music can inspire. Kind of like how John Peel and Nick Hornby don't agree on their lists, but Peel recognizes Hornby as a kindred spirit.

Posted at 10:54 PM

Comments

Note: I’m tired of clearing the spam from my comments, so comments are no longer accepted.

hey thank you - i didn't even realise he had another book out. this looks like a must buy.

31 songs - how to narrow it down to 31?! there have been so many. still, 31 is probably a reasonable number. enough to do justice, and yet not so many that you can be indulgent.

ok, c'mon. want to see your list of 31 :)

Posted by Deb at 8:57 AM, February 23, 2003 [Link]

Heh. I'd list my 31, but the book really is about more than just a list. It just uses the list as a starting point for meditations on life. I've thought about writing similar essays based on songs that meant something to me and posting them here, but I suspect that the main thing they would highlight is the gaping talent gulf between me and Nick Hornby. :-)

It really is a neat book. My fiancee Laura was looking it over last night and thought it was pretty good, too.

Posted by ralph at 9:11 AM, February 23, 2003 [Link]

my husband tried to do that several years ago in the first incarnation of his journal (which he no longer writes)

www.somejinglejanglemorning.com/beathappening/index.htm

if you look at the Soundtrack to a Life essays. i think he just ran out of steam after about the fifth song.

i'd still like to see a list :)

Posted by deb at 1:06 PM, February 23, 2003 [Link]

oops, go to the "writings" part of the journal from the URL...

frames, ugh. well it *was* a few years ago now :)

Posted by deb at 1:08 PM, February 23, 2003 [Link]

The problem is, 31 what? The book isn't Nick Hornby's 31 favorite songs. There are a few in there he can't stand, and some others that were appropriate at one point in his life but that he couldn't bring himself to listen to today. The 31 songs in the book are really just 31 Excuses To Write Essays. So for me to put together a similar list, I would have to write the essays.

That's not to say I won't. Just that it won't happen today. :-)

That said, Songbook is a wonderful book. I recommend it heartily to anyone who feels passionate about music.

I like your husband's essays. But the fact that he stopped after five says something about how tough it is to do something like this.

Posted by ralph at 7:17 PM, February 23, 2003 [Link]

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What do you mean there is no cat?

"You see, wire telegraph is a kind of a very, very long cat. You pull his tail in New York and his head is meowing in Los Angeles. Do you understand this? And radio operates exactly the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat."

- Albert Einstein, explaining radio


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[ photo of Sylvester, a black and white cat ]

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