Everything about it. Their voices. Their blend. Gus on piano, self taught and suddenly impressive. These two friends, bonded by an independent and steadfast creativity. The way Gus's kooky Ray Charles impersonation quickly dissolves into something so charming and cool that my motherness is temporarily suspended, and I'm just a big old goober of a fan.
This essay is a day-maker. For those of you who haven’t seen it making the rounds on Facebook, I’m sharing it here.
I give you fair warning that if the F Bomb offends you, Manson’s essay is a minefield. Prepare to lose a limb.
The line from this piece that particularly struck me, however, was not by the author himself. It was a quote from Eric Hoffer, who said: “A man is likely to mind his own business when it is worth minding. When it is not, he takes his mind off his own meaningless affairs by minding other people’s business.”
Yes, Eric Hoffer. YES. YES. YES.
I’ll have what he's having.
I once knew a gal who made a fine art out of minding other people’s business. She was the Picasso of busybodies. And like Picasso, her impressions of other people’s business tended to be strangely … abstract. Is that a guitar? Or a boob with strings? WHAT. ARE. YOU. SAYING?
She’d draw me into some line of local intrigue, and I would listen, rapt, awaiting theOHMYGOD punch line she’d promised, but it never came. And I finally (it took years) realized that her “OHMYGOD” was my “oh for god’s sake who gives a shit?”
And let me be clear: I am not above gossip.
I am above gossip that bores me.
Don’t give me no parsley without the steak.
And don't give me no parsley without saying "This here? Is Parsley."
Another one of this gal's tricks was a variation on the Seinfeldian “yadayadayada”. Over the course of weeks, she'd casually allude to some big ugly secret, some unforgiveable slight that had been visited upon her, and when it FINALLY came time for the big reveal, she’d say, “Whatever. I’m just over it.”
I’m sorry what?
What are you over?
INQUIRING MINDS. WANT TO KNOW.
And again, let me be clear: I’m not saying she’d reveal her profound truth and then say “Whatever. I’m just over it.”
Her "Whatever”? Was IN LIEU (in lieu!!) of the profound truth. The actual punchline was mine to guess.
She’d go in for the big wind up, “ … So we’re sitting in the kitchen, and I’m listening to <Horrible Person Who Can Not Be Named> saying these words to me, and I’m like I can’t believe you just said that. Can’t. Buhleeeeve. But whatever. I’m just over it.”
I’d say, “I think I missed something. What did <Horrible Person> say?”
And she’d say, “You know what? It’s not even about that for me. It’s just the principle of the whole thing. You just don’t SAY certain things, you know? But honestly? I don’t have the energy to relive it, so I’m putting it behind me.”
ENERGY TO RELIVE WHAT?
Putting WHAT behind you?
Who talks like this? Do you have a person who talks like this? And can we write a play about this person? And call it"The Most Annoying Everplay of Evertime ... Because *Whatever*".
If I gave a f*ck, I would totally write that play.
But I'm minding my own business.
Amanda O'Brien is the author and sole proprietress of Blabbermouse.