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Your Past, Should You Choose to Admit It

They’re somewhere in your life.

In vinyl, on tape, even thin on a CD… on your hard drive.

Some people have embarrassing moments.  Our culture has embarrassing music, songs which we purposely sought out, paid for and kept in our homes.  Somewhere, our ancestors have squirreled away yellowed, humiliating copies of their generations equivalent of “Who Let the Dogs Out?”  But for us, “The Macarena” and “Achy Breaky Heart” aren’t going anywhere.  A good fire isn’t going to wipe out the last traces of “Don’t Worry, Be Happy”:  As long as the Internet lives, Bobby Darrin is laughing in a horrifically carefree manner 24 hours a day.

Who buys this stuff?  We do.  I have a husband with a Backstreet Boys album (“I bought it because women liked them back in the day, and I wanted something to talk to them about,” he wailed when he found it.  By the way, it’s still in his CD case.)  But that, of course, is no match for my New Kids on the Block videos and bevy of Broadway clunkers which suitable only for workout playlists, my proclivity for ragtime piano safely hidden behind headphones.

 But just as the Internet ensures the everlasting life of humiliating music, so does it act as our enabler.  Used to be we’d have to take our Vanilla Ice to the counter and like it; even in the age of Internet order placement, some human being, somewhere, as he stuffs our William Shatner Live CD into the padded envelope, is another person who knows the secret.  But with downloading services, this is all just between you, your credit card… and MC Hammer.

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