As I continue to burn my stuffed orange plastic box of 45s I experienced a troubling realization: the excitement I felt in anticipation of burning XTC’s “Toys,” the C-side from a double 7-inch centered around the exquisite Mummer track “Love On a Farmboy’s Wages,” quickly dissipated to feelings of queasiness and shame. I pride myself in sticking with and seeing through the people and things I love, but I could no longer stand behind “Toys.” Music not only has the power to shape my worldview, sometimes it even offers a place to reside, a basis for a new or extended persona. A song I wrote at that time, while in the throes of “Toys,” sprung to mind. Lyrically it was the equivalent of me playing Cowboys and Indians with this XTC song. The Me Today looked back at the Me Yesterday and thought, What a dipshit!
How do I prevent looking back 30 years from now and realizing that Me Today, the guy talking to you with so much self-awareness and confidence, was yet again a total dipshit? Will you stand by me as I determine whether I can stand by my old singles-spinning self?
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