30 Year-Old Just Now Getting Into Punk
Last Tuesday, 30 year-old Donald Blumquist victoriously informed friends of being a "big fan" of punk, despite 29 previous years of being only tangentially aware of the aggressive musical genre.
According to witnesses, a series of recommendations from punk fan friends, flash-fiction literary collections, and a midnight screening of "Sid and Nancy" at a local art-house theater contributed directly to the thirty-something's new obsession.
"I just didn't understand this stuff growing up," admitted the budding punker. "All that in-your-face, non-pretentious, total honesty stuff just didn't make sense to me until just recently when, after my company's last staff meeting, I realized how shallow and fake so many people are. It was then that I knew that the stuff I was listening to -- like Coldplay, Vampire Weekend, and Pink Floyd -- wasn't speaking to me anymore."
"All of that stuff is just a money-making scheme," said the unmarried accountant, "and how can you believe what someone is saying if they're only in it to make a buck?"
One of Blumquist's friends, Doug Cardine, admits to having recommended that his then-punk-deprived friend pick up a copy of the Dead Kennedy's Fresh Fruit For Rotten Vegetables, which seems to have precipitated the sea change in his friend's musical preferences.
"I mean, punk is cool, and I have a couple of Buzzcocks records and even some Mekons stuff, but I've never been a punk, per se," stated Cardine. "But when I told Don about that Dead Kennedy's album, by the next day he had bought the [33-1/3 RPM] vinyl re-issue, hung the commemorative poster on his bedroom wall and memorized the lyrics."
"He's even refused to go see Phish with me when they come to town next month, which he was totally excited about as recently as three months ago," added Cardine.
According to Blumquist, despite his change in tastes, he hasn't lost touch with his roots, and says he can now appreciate the punk elements in old favorites like Styx and Chicago. Nevertheless, he said that after googling "punk+ethos" and reading the latest news from www.punkplanet.com, he has realized that the genre has something he's known all along, but that never been allowed to manifest in his physiognomy.
"I guess you could say that my first experience with being a punk was in 1995, when I was still in high school," recalled Blumquist. "It was the day that Jerry Garcia died...my Dad was reading the paper and said something like, 'I can't believe that this drug user is being eulogized as a hero,' and I went right out and bought every [Grateful] Dead album I could, and listened to every tape that my deadhead friends would make for me."
Blumquist quickly clarified that he is not, and has never been, a deadhead, nor is he into "that stupid jammy-jammy stuff," but that the seeds of rebellion had been sown.
"I mean, if he had said the same thing about Sid Vicious or Iggy Pop -- he's dead, right? -- I'd have run out and bought all of their records, but it was the punk spirit behind the whole thing that I was channeling," clarified Blumquist. "Wish I had known that 15 years ago, like when CVGB's [sic] was still open."
Friends and others close to the neophyte punker, however, aren't as thrilled with his choice of music. Blumquist's girlfriend, in fact, claims that the change has put an extraordinary strain on their relationship.
"I mean, I'm not a huge fan of the Jonas Brothers, but when a friend of mine won four free tickets off the radio, and invited her boyfriend, me, and Don to go, we accepted -- kind of ironically, you know?" said Blumquist's girlfriend Jeanne Trudeaux. "But it was spoiled by him making some snarky remark every two minutes, or pogo dancing and bumping into people whenever the tempo picked up. It was embarrassing, and no way will we be asked to go to the Hot Chip show, which I actually wanted to see."
Blumquist says that he doesn't know much about the genre known as post-punk, but that he anticipates getting into it once real punk is no longer poignant.
"Too bad there's nothing truly 'punk' happening in music right now -- and don't even mention Green Day -- but I just bought End of the Century by the Ramones, which should keep me occupied for awhile," stated Blumquist.