I like Mike Gordon's hotline.
I like Mike Gordon's hotline in the same way that I like Mike Gordon's music. Quietly, and with shame. And then more shame about the original shame. And a couple minutes of wondering just how big a tool I actually am. And then a mini-exsitential crisis. Followed by a little more shame.
I mean, the man actually has a hotline. I think he just likes to record himself. But then, that's the basis of any musician's career. Why I am inclined to hold that against him remains a mystery so deeply buried within my psyche that it must be intertwined with some kind of womb issue. There's no other explanation. After all, music the one aspect of my personality that I've never felt the need to beg forgiveness for. I'm one of those people that would marry albums if they'd let me. Cosmic Slop. Head Hunters. Axis: Bold As Love. Forever Changes. A Space In Time. Can't Buy A Thrill. Joe's Garage. Houses of the Holy. Pearl. I'd have a dress and a cake and a priest and bridesmaids and black calla lilies and I'd be the worst polygamist on the planet and they'd do a documentary on me for the Discovery Channel. I'd load them all onto my iPod and take them to Costa Rica for our honeymoon. I love music with irrational intensity. I'm not even embarrassed about wanting to have seventeen babies with Alvin Lee based solely upon his guitar solo in "I'm Going Home." Genius has always been like a giant, phallic death ray.(Call me, Alvin!) And I don't just mean wirey, nubile Woodstock Alvin, either. Present-day, chubby, leather-vest, grandfather Alvin has only to say the word. (Seriously. Call me.)
I sincerely believe that the precedent I set when I was four years old and choreographed an interpretive dance routine to express my love for Chuck Mangione's Children of Sanchez should have negated any embarrassment that may have gotten in the way of flinging my soul at Mike Gordon's feet the first time I heard "Clone". Besides, he's never accepted a knighthood or married a Playmate or collaborated with anybody who used to be in a boy band. He hasn't been clubbing in L.A. without panties on. He hasn't allowed reality T.V. cameras to follow him around with a microphone pack poking out of his trousers. He's never asked me to accept public intoxication as an indicator of his artistic credibility. By all accounts, I should be offering up my ovaries to him by now. Why? Why can't I do it? What is standing in my way? Why is his hotline a covert morning ritual that makes my face turn hot with chagrin despite the fact that I'm religious about it because it always makes me giggle?
Like everything else Gordonesque, I have no idea. Part of me finds it extremely suspect that he would maintain a hotline for the specific purposes of recording his "like, duuuuude" verbal swaggering in the first place. Something in me snaps into the fetal position when I think about the hundreds of fans who call in and listen to it and leave him breathless messages, the contents of which I can't even bear to think about. It also bothers me that I am one of them, even though I NEVER HAVE AND WILL press nine to leave a message OR the pound sign for more options. Okay, maybe I did the pound sign thing once. Just to see what would happen. And then hung up in such a panic that I knocked over my paperclip holder. Maybe. But I keep doing it anyway, because I can't resist the pull of his relaxed timber and his sweet, conversational, it's-three-in-the-morning-and-I've-just-finished-off-a-bottle-of-gin musings. I still like hearing American accents as long as they're not yelling "OOOH! KICKASS! THEY HAVE KFC!" when I'm trying to walk downtown. Plus, he's funny. Plus, there are books I want to read now because he keeps recommending ones that sound interesting. I don't know if I'll ever get around to it since the mere notion of buying a book that I know I am buying specifically because it was recommended to me by Mike Gordon via his hotline fills me with so much dread that I'm sure I'd run screaming from the checkout line at Borders, if I even made it that far, but still, I like it. It's nice. And horrible. And nice.
Reason continues to elude me. Thanks, Mike Gordon. Am I being sarcastic? To quote Random Grunge Kid in the classic Simpsons Homerpalooza episode, I don't even know anymore.