Should a man rapidly approaching middle age, a father of two, with the responsibilities and pressures of our current moment, be listening to a song that is such good fun while driving with the windows down? Should he be letting the pleasant slack of a few vacation days dull his usual worries and anxieties, with a paper bag of fish tacos for his family’s dinner on the passenger seat, the waves rolling onto the beach one after another in their perpetual cycle? Should he be listening to music with quite this much yelling when he has a chance to go for a drive by himself? Should he be listening to it at such a high volume?
It is a Thursday evening in September now, last month’s family vacation has dissolved into the slipstream of pandemic-time. The air outside is full of smoke and smog, the night is oppressively hot. I am not in the mood for this song right now, if I am honest. I’m worn out after a dispiriting week (it’s not even over!) of spreadsheets and emails and the quicksand slog of contemporary office work. But, vacations are good. A little drive down Highway 1 with the music turned up can be held as a memory until it’s needed to provide a little spark to a tired soul as he clicks and drags and wishes others best regards.