Wednesday, January 3, 2007

You are an obsession...

As I type this, I am sitting on the bus heading down to Boston. It is 6:40am, and there is traffic on the highway. I got my ass out of bed early specifically to catch the early bus and miss some of the traffic. What do all of you people do that necessitates getting up so early to drive into the city? The sun isn’t even up.

I am looking out the window at people sitting by themselves in their cars. Do they do this everyday? It can’t contribute to a positive temperament.

On the bright side, sitting on the bus frees me to do other activities. I’ve caught up on a few podcasts, including a Pop Candy podcast about people who obsessively collect things. There was a Pez collector, a Star Wars fanatic, and a man who collects Debbie Gibson memorabilia. Each of them verges on OCD, although they seemed reasonable about how much of their life savings they are willing to plunk down to feed the habit.

The last guy, the lover of all things Gibson, never came out and said he was gay. He used the word nerd, which is perhaps southern for gay. The Star Wars collector named his own Yoda tattoo as the favorite part of his collection. Does that even count in the technical sense?

As a sidenote, when looking for Debbie Gibson pics, I was amazed at the number of adult-oriented shots. I know she's all grown up and going by Deborah and has done a lot since her days as a Long Island young'un, but... Electric Youth no more!

I’d recommend the Pop Candy podcast if you have the patience to put up with the host, Whitney, who is a terrible interviewer. How she got this job is beyond me – it’s an argument for being in the right place at the right time. When she speaks with guests, you can tell they are clearly trying to lead her in a certain direction, but all she can come up with is what is on the cards in front of her.

In the recent collector’s discussion, the Pez lady was surprisingly interesting, and clearly knew the history of Pez. Her favorite piece was from 1947, created after the partition of Germany, and stamped “Made in the US Zone.” After laying out the initial story on this, the interviewee paused, waiting for the follow up. Perhaps a question on other dispensers that reflect history? No. Instead, the deeply relevant, “So do you actually like the candy?”

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