Growing up, I was one of those people who thought Paul Newman just made salad dressing. He wasn't the strangely charming, banjo-strumming loner of Cool Hand Luke; he was the avuncular gentleman with the jaunty hat donating the proceeds from Newman's Own Italian Dressing to charity. Later in my youth he became a purveyor of popcorn, quality lemonade, and imitation Oreo's that make Hydrox their bitch.
Some years later, college probably, I finally saw him in a movie. He was Butch Cassidy and he was grinning and shooting at folks at not selling pasta sauce. It was disturbing.
Now, my parents find all this strange and vaguely hilarious. After all, Paul Newman was Captain Kick Ass for quite some time. It'd be like someone knowing Marlon Brando only because of his private island or by scare-tactic ads warning of morbid obesity. It'd be like knowing Tom Cruise for his pious Scientology.
Of course, now, I've gone the other way completely. Now, instead of not being properly informed on the achievements of bygone celebrities, I'm now clueless on the names of the new ones. I thought Shia Lebeauf was a pirate. I thought Pink was dead. I wish Nickelback would die.
In other words, I'm out of sorts. I don't know enough about the artistic heroes of my parents or nearly anything about their modern day counterparts. I can, however, give you the track listing for Number of the Beast off the top of my head and quote most of Princess Bride from memory.
Where am I going with this? Beats me. I just get sad when I'm doing the crossword and it mentions a movie from 2006 I've never heard of or an Oscar winner from the '50s that I couldn't pick out of a line-up. I'm shrouded in ignorance, I tells ya. How will I ever make it on Jeopardy! like this?
There are things, however, that I do know. For example: we've got a show...tomorrow. It sort of came out of nowhere and I admit this is very short notice, but why not stop by? It's at Slim's and we're opening for a gentleman named Jamie T who we saw in Austin six months ago, and who is fantastic with a four string guitar. I'd never heard his music before but its instantly lovable and, if you're an Anglophile, he's English, so there's that. (And if you're an Anglophobe, then he's German. Or French. He's a Creole. Just come to the show for God's sake). Details are: early show, we're on at 9. It's all ages, so those familiar Shia Lebeauf can mingle with those who voted for Eisenhower and we can enjoy rock and roll together, which predates us all. Please come on down. New songs abound.
For now, I'm going to drink a cup of Newman's dark roast, with him and his daughter there on the bag, vogueing a la American Gothic, and continue working my straight job, pretending I know what I'm doing. It's fun. Remind me to never become a lawyer. Not that that happens on accident or anything.