Thursday, August 14, 2003

Lounge Music and the Theory of Being What You Are

You know, there is something about Lounge music that makes you want to take off your shoes, have a bottle of beer, or wine if you're the classy type, and just basically relax. Probably that's why they called it "Lounge". Before, I didn't have a single copy of this type of tunes, which at that time I misunderstood as some kind of slow techno shit. Then, after I heard some of the good stuff, the stuff that makes you do the things I describe above, and I was hooked. I mean, what better way to relax an evening with a book in one hand and maybe a beer on the other while listening to sounds of Miguel Migs, Cafe del Mar and Telepopmusik? What's best is that its true function is to act as background sound, a silent filter of sorts. I mean that most genres like pop or rock go directly to the front of your brain, and are meant to be really listened to and maybe makes you hum a few bars or sing a few choruses and such. Lounge lazily saunters to the back of your brain, relaxing the gray matter and makes no attempt to grandstand itself.

I realize I'm attempting to describe a type of music that is meant to be experienced, not just explained and dissected. Well, I recommend you try some of these tunes, particularly the 3 albums/artists I mentioned and see for yourself. If you like it, great...if not, well, some of us have different tastes.

A friend and I were stranded during an unexpected late afternoon storm and got into discussing our past high school lives. She admittedly lamented that during her HS days, she was the baby of her group or barkada and focused herself on inane and inconsequential things. After HS grad, she went to different school where there were people who don't know her and suddenly life became clearer. She luckily adjusted her outlook and priorities and portrayed the strong and intellectual type. Even still, whenever there is a gathering of her HS barkada, her friends still regarded her as the baby she used to be, although a lot has changed in her during those years. She remarked that while you might have changed over the years and became wiser and smarter, your childhood friends would still remember you what you were. Looking back to my own HS experiences, I found this particular theory true. People don't usually find their true potential until an event happens that would change their perspective in life. In retrospect, even if these life-changing events occur, we are slaves to the convention that staying the same is better and more convenient. I mean why changed it if it ain't broken? Why waste the effort if you don't have to, and besides why change your image if this persona of yours is what's expected of you? And there it was, I finally understood why, for example, some bullies stay as bullies their whole lives and while some other bullies become saints and maybe even rocket scientists. The environmental factor, being the immediate people who know us, is a great or even the ultimate factor for change. People expect us to act the same way we've been acting before so we comply unwittingly or even unconsciously to their demands. Failure to do so would make the general population confused and maybe even get you ostracized (ok, that was extreme, but I’m making a point). Take me for example. I was sometimes the brunt of the joke in HS, someone who was pitied and always regarded as weak willed (ok, that was melodramatic...I wasn't all that bad, right?). The very very very sad part is I was content. GASP! Contented being like that? Am I daft? Well, perhaps, although I did try sometimes to rise to the occasion and assert myself, yet doing so just rewarded me weird looks and shaking of heads behind my back. Just the lack of support made me lose my nerve. Oh well, maybe next time.

2nd Round. College. Tried again. Succeeded beyond my wildest expectations. I sometimes think of it as coming out of my shell. On reflection, it was the lack of public image that allowed me to build up my own true self, hence today people generally find me now as what I really am (Honestly, I don't what I am, though they usually say 'passionate', 'witty, 'great sense of humor', 'gregarious' and some other things that make my ears flap to the heavens. Don't know if they're just pulling my leg, hehe). Still, even meeting with old friends makes me revert to the old me, the quiet and meek type. Kinda like of an inbuilt system, a program of sorts that makes pushes the necessary buttons in our brain to make us more appealing to the people's liking. It's true then that we wear different masks to certain kinds of people. I guess I'm one of the lucky ones to change without fear of derision and be able to live my kind of life. They say that to know true happiness you must first experience pain and suffering. Just for this reason, I don't have any regrets.


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