April 20, 2010

Things That Shouldn’t Be Archived #5 — High School Edition

Because I care about you, dear reader, and because I care about the development of a more refined culture through the dissemination of audiovisual materials, I was perusing YouTube last night. I happened upon a video simply referred to as “Final Countdown — Acoustic Version”. I will not share that with you here. I feel that Arrested Development has completed the cultural work of that song and it needn’t be further addressed (see — I am looking out for you).

What I stumbled upon next was a video by the same performer, one which brought back a flood of memories:

Thing is, you see, “Thunderstruck” was my graduating class song in high school. I’m not quite sure how that came to pass. It was not a new song at the time, nor had it been incredibly popular like the class songs from preceding years. I’m not saying I disliked the song, but I think my submissions for consideration at that time included some Pink Floyd song, “Staying Alive” arranged for kazoos, and then probably something like Mozart’s Requiem or some such. All I’m saying is, there must have been an arranged effort to nominate an old AC/DC song to commemorate the greatest years of our lives.

It’s true that the past is a foreign country, but so, it sometimes seems now, is my hometown.

Or maybe not. I started looking around for other videos related to “Thunderstruck” and, judging from the number I viewed, found that it’s quite the touchstone for expressing one’s emotions and one’s virtuosity (that is one hell of a guitar riff). I found some fun stuff:

But things quickly degenerated from there:

(Oh, PBS, you have the greatest power to disappoint!)

And then it just started to hurt:

So all in all I had an accelerated ride over the smooth-to-pot-holed road through the neighborhoods of nostalgia, ironic appropriation, kitsch, and detritus. What I learned on my evening vacation was, really, you’ve got to hold onto the night, hold onto the memories, because, although we’ve come to the end of the road, these are days we’ll remember.

Oh — I also learned that, in spite of everything, bagpipes still kinda rock.

Joshua Ranger

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