I don’t like the Rolling Stones. I think I’ve come to that conclusion. There are individual Stones songs that I love like anything. But they’re not a band I trust to put out albums I might find interesting. No, that’s not exactly it. I prefer if someone else listens to the Stones and points me to the stuff that’s worthwhile. Right now I have “Under My Thumb” on my phone and every time it comes on, it just scrapes against my aesthetic sensibilities like a fork on teeth. Same with “Brown Sugar” (though I’d argue that “Brown Sugar” is a better song than “Under My Thumb.” Both are still not songs I care to hear ever again).
But “Time is On My Side”? Brilliant. And sounds timeless. (For fun, check out how much “The Last Time” has a kind of Monkees-esque-ness, by comparison.) “Play with Fire,” too. Wow. I’m not sure there’s a rock band at that time that did creepy as well as them. I spent a great deal of time in early high school listening the fuck out of “She’s a Rainbow” and “Ruby Tuesday.”
And, of course, “Sympathy for the Devil” is pretty much the greatest. I could go on. Song after song of theirs that I like. And they should be right up my alley. I love Led Zeppelin, and Led Zeppelin never met an old blues artist they didn’t try to impersonate.
So, I guess what I’m saying is that I could put together a personal Rolling Stones greatest hits album. But I never do, and I’m not sure why. Just that I don’t like them. I can’t really understand it.
I love October. The weather is cool. Dead people are around. Everything is creepy in a homey way. I am a little nervous but mostly excited about the October project. It’s my first serialized thingamabob (holy shit, people, thingamabob is in Spellcheck. While Spellcheck is not. Is Spellcheck from the 40s?) and I’m kind of excited to see how it goes.
I have to call the contractor today and see when he can come do the den. That’s an exciting relief and a little stressful. I’m just afraid the demolition is going to be a bear. But I want to have that room done before Thanksgiving both because that ceiling is a visible mess and because I need to stick people in there to play solitaire on that computer when they’re being giant babies during the holidays. And I emphasize “need.” And I can’t have the ceiling caving in on loved ones, again, no matter how obnoxious they’re being.
We spent Saturday getting the big stuff back in the living room. It honestly makes me want to cry. It’s weird, but it would have been emotionally easier on me to just throw everything out except for the irreplaceable art and get all new. But, of course, that’s not an option. So, everything has to be wiped down and cleaned off. Eventually, I just started tossing shit I had no idea how to clean. I told the Butcher, if it’s missing, just assume it’s gone. And I should have worn a mask to do it, because breathing in that shit is terrible for you.
But we didn’t. There’s not a whole lot left to be done. We have to figure out some way to clean a couple of chairs and get them back in, get the hall tree back in and the stuff that was on it cleaned and on it, and the curtains hung. It’s not that bad. I’d rather do just about anything other than that, though. Plus, it means facing that some stuff is ruined. The awesome rocking chair? Not fixable. Now a pile of ashes. The chair that was my grandma’s? Not fixable. Now a pile of ashes. We can’t get the stereo equipment to work, but we’re hopeful that someone can come see if it’s salvageable. I guess the thing is not just that everything is so very dirty and some things are broken. It’s that you have to face, repeatedly, that this bad thing happened.
You can’t just let it recede into memory yet. You’re still in the immediate aftermath.
Thank the gods that we won’t have to go through that in the den.
Holy shit. Knock on wood.