I first stumbled across Jonatha Brooke at a listening station in the now-defunct Sound Warehouse chain in Denver in 1995. I played the first few tracks of Plumb and was interested enough to buy the album. This was back when I was still steadfastly clinging to the notion that I didn't need to own a CD player, so I actually bought it on cassette. Incidentally, that embarassing anecdotal display of naive technological anti-savvy has nothing to do with the fact that it has taken me however many years to set up a MySpace page, or my continuing failure to post videos of any kind over on Youth Tube despite the sensible urgings of my technological betters to do so. I am merely convinced that those fads will fade shortly after I bother getting around to it, so you know, two kids, mortgage, why bother? One of these days, I'm going to be so right about that, and that's the day the funny face you're making will tragically freeze that way. Incidentally, financial tip: it looks to me like a good time to buy real estate or REIT shares. In any event, to this day, that remains one of my favorite albums (though now on CD), growing stronger in my mind with each listen, and I've been a big fan of hers ever since.
And amazingly, the very first thing that happened when I set this page up last year was that I received the second most exciting email I've ever gotten, next to the opportunity I seized to help a desperate Nigerian diplomat flee his war-torn country and the certain cruel doom that surely awaited him for but 500 of my hard-earned ruples. "Jonatha Brooke wants to be your friend." I enthusiastically approved her and awaited the first of our many inevitable compadre-to-compadre chit-chats.
Alas, as you already knew at least one paragraph ago, Jonatha was no Nigerian diplomat, and her friendship was not as it first seemed.
Indeed, I got the distinct impression that ours was a one-way relationship, existing only to allow her to inundate me with impersonal marketing posts. Can you imagine?! I know! I can't either! I'm so incredibly indignant, I just may need to utilize an emoticon on this surly occasion! And normally, I'm just like Jon Bon Jovi --a manly chiseled stone of iconless emotions. But not today!
When I first set up this MySpace page, being the naivenik that I am, I imagined that my friends would be MyFriends and that MyNewFriends would be my new friends. Of course, everybody but me understands the difference between "My Friends" and "MyFriends." When I was in elementary school, Chuckie Kapelke was my friend, but surprisingly, my Greatest American Hero lunch box was not immediately full of impersonal advertisements about his new lemonade stand. Then again, that could be because I forgot to thank him for the add.
Well, there were only two sensible options at my disposal: I could either go off the Andy Rooney deep end, bestrew my desk with garbage (or as my wife would say, more garbage), and start in with the non-stop grumbling OR --and you can see it's a big "or"-- I could take this high road I've heard so much about and convert MyFriend into my friend.
So when for just about the first time ever, Jonatha played a show closer to me than Dublin or Amsterdam (apparently her listserv monitor believes that I hail from Dover, not Denver, and now live in Portsmouth, not Portland), the wife and I went down, saw her play, and met her. As you can see, we are clearly actual friends at this point.
The end result of all of this hoo-ha is that I've decided not to accept any friends with whom I have had some actual connection. So in looking at my short list of MyBuddies, you can rest assured that each of them represents someone who I think is worth checking out. Or something like that. I don't know. I've been futzing with how to wrap up this stupid blog post for like six months, and I give up. Hooray, I got a C+!!!!