Out shopping for groceries yesterday, J and I had a free-wheeling conversation -- sparked by the recent AMA Awards show. I was remarking how I used to keep up with current music -- I read Billboard every week and even if I didn't like a lot of the songs on the pop charts, I knew the names, knew what was popular -- but I stopped paying much attention a few years ago, and now there are huge stars who have had hit after hit for years and I have no idea what they look like or sound like. Lady Gaga? I know what Kanye West looks like (sort of, if he wears the glasses) but I can't distinguish his songs from any other pop hip-hop song on the radio. I'm not saying they all sound alike, I'm saying they all sound alike to me.
Because I follow politics more closely than popular music, I did catch the Adam Lambert/Out Magazine brouhaha -- which was nearly as mind-numbingly boring as Lady Gaga's burning piano -- but I felt a certain obligation.
I was surprised and I have to say somewhat relieved to learn this morning that we can blame Adam Lambert for the failure of the gay civil rights movement. Just when we were successfully sneaking into the mainstream with weddings and babies, etc., here comes an ignorant, selfish pop star to remind everyone that we're actually, um, gay. (Ignore that man getting a fake blowjob, America! He's not one of us. Marriage is what we want, not sex. We promise we'll be less gay if you let us get married. No more blowjobs and buttfucking -- everyone knows married people don't have sex.)
Anyway, eventually the conversation between J and me got around to where it always seems to get around to lately: men. My major insight was that if you're going to date a younger man, it's better to date a man 20 years younger than say 10 years younger, because the 20-somethings are all obsessed with the 80s right now. The pop culture of that decade is, in some twisted way, formative for you both, so you're more likely to have cultural touchstones in common. I can talk about Keith Haring, ACT UP, early Madonna, and they eat it up, whereas guys who came of age in the 90s ... I don't have much to say about 'N Sync and TLC. I just have to be careful about saying things like (in a whiny, pedantic monotone): "Lady Gaga is not doing anything Madonna didn't do better in 1985." I'm pretty sure that's unattractive.