Monday, January 25, 2010

Are You Experienced

When my step-brother Shane was little, one day he claimed the Jimi Hendrix song Purple Haze was his favorite song. He must have been about seven. The rest of us kids, a couple of years or so older, made sure to remind him that he had never actually heard Purple Haze. Still, Shane was very firm about it. Even so, he said, Purple Haze was his favorite song, and he was sure hearing it would only confirm that.

We had a good snicker about that. Poor Shane, what a dope!

And yet over the years I’ve also suffered from Purple Haze syndrome. Even before I’ve read a book, I’m sure it’s going to be essential. Or I hear of a poet I’ve yet to read, and I’m sure they’re about to become my favorite poet. Or a restaurant I’ve never been to, a dish I’ve never eaten, a song I’ve never heard. A career, a country, a movie, a moisturizer.

I think I’ve only ever been disappointed.

And that’s why the Purple Haze phenomenon is important.

It’s the hope, stupid.


rallentanda said...

Purple haze syndrome is the best syndrome one can have.It is a one size fits all and provides a nice gloss over drab.

Kass said...

I agree, it's important to be stupidly hopeful, especially about moisturizer.

Anonymous said...

It's that whole Woody Allen, Without Feathers, concept that makes things unbearable. I love your eternal head banging optimism and also the way you can coin a phrase with so little fanfare.

I'm currently contemplating a career change. Perhaps in a couple years I'll need some opium to alleviate the disappointment - I'm such a dope.

lucas said...

Odd, the same syndrome rarely disappoints me. If I'm predisposed towards liking something, I end up liking it (for reasons, I convince myself, wholly independent of my predisposition).

Are you sure your Purple Haze isn't broken?

SarahJane said...

My Purple Haze is surely broken. I think that song should have been "Violet Haze," or "Aquamarine Haze." Does Prince's "Purple Rain" have anything to do with "Purple Haze?" I've never thought of that.

I also never saw "Without Feathers." Is it a good one?

BJeronimo said...

I like the concept of Without Feathers. It's a book of short stories. It's a parody of Dickenson's, Hope is a thing with feathers that lives in the soul, or some such. The book isn't that deep or related to the title, I like the title more than the book. Have you heard of Doris Kearns-Goodwin?

SarahJane said...

Ah ha! It's a book. I will check it out, and, no, I haven't heard of Doris Kearns-Goodwin, until now of course.

shane keats said...

Thanks for immortalizing one my youthful indiscretions, sister Sarah. I will get my revenge!
-- Shane "What a dope" Keats

SarahJane said...

just trying to get the world to appreciate you more.

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