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Live and Direct From a Motorcycle Guarded Stoop

Yesterday I re-upped my interest in 80’s British ska, a period I hadn’t thought about in a long time, but used to mean the world and then some to my 15 year-old self. (Though when I was 15, it was 1997, long past the idyllic miscegenation Jerry Dammers and Terry Hall dreamt about, and into the tepid cruise-ship skank of Today’s Specials.) Yes, SFJ, someone does need to give UB40 some credit where credit’s deserved.

I read Generation Ecstacy for the first time. I can’t say that I loved it all, but as someone who doesn’t listen to a lot of “electronic dance music,” my perspectives were slightly illuminated re: what people are hearing when they listen to that music, in an abstract sense. I only took ecstasy once: I was 16 and spent a good chunk of time riding up and down in an elevator and spilling my soul all over the floor. I’ve never been much of a social drug-taker anyhow, and I came away from the book still feeling really skeptical about the whole role of MDMA as some collective enlightener. Most hilarious/comforting passage: when Reynolds talks about how football hooligans started taking E and stopped brawling, and then when they stopped taking E and started brawling again a year later. Humans love a good habit.


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