remasters and dogs

Hello again, dear reader!

I figured I should get in touch while I have a break. I have been busy putting the finishing touches on my proposed script for the next Stormy Daniels feature film. (Working title: Make America Fellate Again.) So far, I have two pages completed; so, a fair bit of paring down will be necessary.

I had intended to begin today’s lesson with an early promotional clip designed to force the compact disc upon an unsuspecting public. The memorable and somewhat infamous ad features a man wrestling for control of a CD (probably Billy Joel’s 52nd Street) with his dog. Upon successfully prying the slightly chewed disc from Spot’s mouth, our protagonist calmly tosses it into his compact-disc-playing device. Needless to say, Big Shot never sounded better.

(Well, not until after its owner employed a green marker to line the inner edge of the disc.)

It was a clever means of illustrating the durability and indestructible design of the CD. Clever and thoroughly dishonest.

(Again, I had hoped to share this landmark in false advertising with you. Alas — incredibly — there is no trace of said promo piece anywhere on the YouTube. Couldn’t even find an image. I promise you, though, it exists.)

I have never attempted to duplicate this stupid pet trick. Happily, though, I last week experienced something similar. For that, I would like to thank my friend Chummy.

The unwitting victim is veteran Canadian rockers Sloan, whose A Sides Win compilation evidently got into a one-player tug-of-war with Chummy one evening. I was not there to witness the skirmish, but did see the result. Sloan, I regret to say, came out on the losing end.ChummyvSloan

The disc was not completely destroyed, but did take a beating. And a chewing. Now, I once purchased a Bob Dylan bootleg CD at Subterranean Records in New York City that had been sliced through with a box-cutter, either by an overzealous intern opening the day’s shipment or by Bob himself during a clandestine late-night visit to the Village.

It seemed unlikely that the disc would play; however, at ten bucks it had been priced to sell. Surprisingly enough it played fine — that is, until a few seconds into Like a Rolling Stone, the final track.

Of course, no expects a disc (or even an LP) to be mightier than a box-cutter. Now, thanks to Chummy, I had been granted an opportunity to find out who really wins the eternal struggle between disc and dog.

It’s dog. Every time.

Not that Sloan did not put up a fight. Indeed, a dozen tracks into the 16-track disc, all was well and even Chummy was nodding her head to Money City ManiacsThe Good in Everyone and so forth.

Ah, but barely a minute into The Other Man, Sloan gave up. In that sense, the disc is not unlike the band itself. The remaining tracks refused to play at all. One can hardly blame them, under the circumstances.

Hey, at least we’ll always have Underwhelmed and 11 other classics. Not that I intend to risk playing that disc again. Even Chummy appears to have lost her enthusiasm for it now that she has proved a point.

Lesson: I should have bought Billy Joel instead. I’ll bet that sucker still sounds as fresh as it did 40 years ago.

Especially on vinyl.



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