Recently a song came on the radio that made me want to take a pair of pliers to my ears and rip them out. The crazy thing is, the song was a huge hit once upon a time. It could be argued that it was one of the biggest hits of the 90s, and it was indeed performed by one of the better bands of the 90s. It remains a minor tragedy that this song is a big part of the band's legacy. I would say almost everyone I've discussed this song with also hates it. But, someone out there likes it. So, I decided to try and listen to the whole song, and see if there was something I was missing lo these many years since it was omnipresent on the airwaves. The song I'm talking about is an abomination called "Black Hole Sun" by Soundgarden. Here it is once again, a five-minute and twenty-one second nightmarish assault upon our senses and all that we hold dear:
Let's break down the video and song section by section to see if there's anything at all redeeming. I hate this song with the white hot intensity of a 10,000 Black Hole Suns (whatever those are), so I'm not sure I'm going to make all the way through, but for the purposes of this post, I must endure:
00:00 - 00:17: I immediately regret this decision. Okay, well here's some nice scenery and some absurdly shaped hills that don't really exist, and the sky looks a bit ominous and apocalyptic. Was that in the forecast this week? Overall though, it's not so bad...yet. A guitar whines like a dying puppy in the background, a little annoying, but trying to ignore it...
00:17-00:45: Oh dear Lord, here come the lyrics. "In my eyes, indisposed..." I think your were indisposed while writing this song, Mr. Cornell. Like the tripping on mescaline and angel dust type of indisposed. We are 20 seconds in and I already need to hit the stop button. Some crazy man mows the lawn while 4 weirdly dressed men prance about, and act like they are in a Talking Heads video, but not ironically, in a blatant rip-off way. Get me out of here.
00:45-:1:30: A lady fondles a fish and a man feeds a baby goat what appears to be goat milk. That's just cruel. Don't show this to Tom Brady, it'd be like porn for him. And, yes, we get it, everyone smiles crazily in this video. Next, an old woman brandishes a chainsaw. I submit that no idea that was brought up was turned down during the making of this video. "Hey how about we throw in a weight lifter here, boss?" ..."Yes, he'll be doing push-ups...done!"
1:30-2:00: At the 1:32 mark you can tell that lead guitarist Kim Thayil does not want to be here. He knows this songs sucks, I truly believe that. That look is like, "I'm sorry folks, I didn't write this, I wrote 'Outshined', that was good, wasn't it?" He wants out of this hellish dreamscape where clouds travel way too fast. We all do, Kim. We all do.
2:00-2:45: Good God, we are only at the 2 minute mark? The wind seems to be picking up, there's a plethora of bugs, and a girl grills a Barbie doll on the barbecue. Get it? Barbie on the bar-b? It's a little on the nose for such a deep and profound video. I think what Soundgarden is really trying to say is that we are all barbie dolls being grilled by the little girl that is this song. Or perhaps, the grilled barbie is inside of us all, if we'd only have the courage look. This will make for some great discussions during Thanksgiving dinner, feel free to bring it up as you pass the grilled Barbies and mashed Kens.
2:45-3:20: The girl by the pool that appeared to be quite cute has a lizard tongue. Isn't that always the way? A face-melting solo by Kim sweeps a large portion of the world into the black-hole, while Cornell plays some disinterested rhythm guitar. If it meant I could make the song stop and never hear it again, I'd happily leap into that black hole, too. But nope, we have another verse. Screw water-boarding, we should use this song for interrogating terrorists.
3:20-4:30: More lyrics, "snakes in my shoes...a walking sleep...hang my head, drown my fear, till you all just disappear." You should hang your head Chris, you really should. Next up, a dalmatian bathes with a lady while a guy that looks like Chris Cornell's brother preens in the mirror. DON'T QUESTION IT, IT'S ART! Enjoy that bath while you can little doggie and perverted lady, because the black hole sun is coming to kill you. It's coming for us all.
4:30-5:10: Sometimes repeating the chorus 94 times in a row is not the best way to end a song....and finally, mercifully, it is over. Conclusions? Well for one, I'm never doing that again. Secondly, the sun was clearly coming all along for him, there was no need to ask "won't you come" so many times. It was a tad desperate. And finally, we've learned that during any impending solar apocalypse, it's a great idea to take care of some yard work, bathe with canines and smile.
Now, let's all wash away this pain and get on to the NFL picks in a lightning round Jeopardy Q and A format:
Answer: Game you have a great interest in because you enjoy pain, failure and shattering disappointment.
Question: What is any game played by the Jets and Bills, Alex?
Alex: that is correct, and take the Bills to cover the 8.
Answer: The games you aren't going to watch, unless forced to at gunpoint.
Question: What are Tampa +3.5 at Tennessee; Washington +3.5 at Seattle and Cleveland +7.5 at Cincinnati because they make my eyes bleed, Alex?
Alex: Correct! Take the favorites in all three games.
Answer: The games you will sneak off and watch every minute of instead of helping out on Thanksgiving, because you're a bad person.
Question: What are Detroit +6 at Green Bay, San Fran +3.5 at Balt., Miami +7 at Dallas?
Alex: Righto! Take Detroit, Balt and Miami and now please tell me a useless anecdote about yourself that totally disrupts the flow of the game...
Answer: Games you're only interested about for fantasy reasons, and will therefore refresh your computer screen 48 times a minute while watching other games, you cyber nerd.
Question: What are Carolina -3.5 at Indy, Minny +9 at Atlanta, Chicago +5 at Oakland, Pittsburgh -10.5 at K.C.?
Alex: You're on fire, plus take Carolina, Atlanta, Chicago, Pittsburgh and did you know I'm Canadian?
Answer: Games you will watch because you also like to look at car crashes on the side of the road, sicko
Question: What are Arizona +3 at St. Louis & Houston -3.5 at Jacksonville?
Alex: Oui, Oui! Did you know I speak French and love to show it off? Take St. Louis and Houston and drive on by, rubbernecker.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!
Overall record: 68-43-6
Last week: 6-6-2 (hello, mediocrity!)