"I don't know why we are here, but I'm pretty sure that it is not in order to enjoy ourselves." Ludwig Wittgenstein

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Passion is No Ordinary Word

Buck’s father, Joshua, a history professor at UCLA, taught early modern European history, with a specialization in what was charmingly called the “the transition from feudalism to capitalism.” Despite his seemingly stodgy area of specialization, Joshua was no nerd. He had grown up in late 1960s London where it was possible for future academics and factory workers to find themselves sharing the same picket lines and the same street battles, as they confronted the forces of her majesty’s police.

Joshua had acquired the period’s tastes in music---English rock and American inspired blues-- which he shared with his son, while Buck was later growing up in suburban LA. That music loomed large in Buck’s consciousness—sometimes, too large, Buck thought,---serving as a soundtrack to a life that could on occasion seem like a movie he watched from the last row of an empty matinee theater.

Buck looked at Jackie as she strode among the art crowd this evening—her long brunette hair falling across her shoulders, her confident stride, her shape evident beneath appropriately conservative attire--- and he couldn’t help debating which song from long-ago London she most elicited for him now, The Faces’ “Stay with Me” or Graham Parker’s “Passion is No Ordinary Word.”

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