Who Needs You to Shovel

My neighbors are obsessed with shoveling snow.  Every time it snows more than an inch, there is continual shoveling going on on my street, in the immediate vicinity of my house, for approximately 36 hours straight.  I am talking about perhaps my ten closest neighbors.  The shoveling NEVER.  STOPS.  Shoveling, scraping, pounding of ice in cracks.  It’s like they need to dust for some fingerprints on the concrete.  photo 5And listen, each one of these houses has approximately a three-foot-wide sidewalk that stretches the length of their house…maybe 20 feet.  Every time it snows, I shovel my sidewalk, as completely as would be necessary on a street upon which nobody travels, in about five minutes as soon as I get home from work.  After working ten hours.  And riding my bike two miles.  I’m saying: it’s not hard to do.  Now, don’t get me wrong here.  I’m not “complaining” about this.  I know I’ve got a reputation for “complaining” about things (I interpret it as “having opinions”, which comes from “being super fucking intelligent and awake to the machinations of the wider world photo 8and structure of reality”, but whatever, if you think I’m a complainer, I’m a complainer), so I don’t want to be seen as particularly complaining about this.  It’s whatever.  You want to shovel your sidewalk ten times after it snows, go for it.  More than anything I just find it peculiar.  Are they just bored?  Or is it a situation of trying to out-do the Joneses?  Plus it is SO COLD right now.  You KNOW I’m a trooper with weather but no way would I be going out repeatedly into that cold just to get my sidewalk–which in all likelihood only the mailman and my own family will walk on—perfect.

I know we don’t live in a world anymore—if ever we did—in which a significant amount of people care about the performances of musicians on late night talk shows.  For quite a few years (as should surprise almost nobody) I was such a person, one who actually paid attention to that world.  I knew the performance lineup from all the shows, almost every week, for about 4 years, I stayed on top of that.  Although lately that world has faded from my attention.  But last week, a band called The Orwells (I can only assume named after author George Orwell)

I hate to seem like a bumpkin, but this is a picture from my very first (solo and sober) cab ride yesterday...I think I'm finally a city boy.

I hate to seem like a bumpkin, but this is a picture from my very first (solo and sober) cab ride yesterday…I think I’m finally a city boy.

performed their new song “Who Needs You” on the David Letterman show and it was a pretty authentic, impassioned performance, which made some waves big enough that it made its way to my attention.  Now, there was nothing especially outrageous about this performance (other than the lyrics to the song, which nobody seems to have noticed, which include lines like “You better burn that flag/ Cause it aint against the law”…and for the record everybody…it isn’t against the law), except it wasn’t a cookie-cutter, “Let’s nail this!” performance.  It was just a little quirky, a lot impassioned, and fairly off-key.  I like it, but they’re probably not going to become a favorite band of mine (although I have put their album on my “to-buy” list). Although I don’t want to take too much away from the legitimacy of their performance; it WAS reminiscent of the early days of some great bands (who would later, inevitably, lose steam and passion) like the Rolling Stones, Pearl Jam, or The Doors before Morrison died (take note: I hate The Doors).   The more pertinent point of discussion, for me, is: what kind of artistic culture have we fostered where a band simply playing with a bit of abandon on a talk show makes the front page of Rolling Stone‘s website?  How neutered has our art become?  How boring are we?  Watch the performance here, and make sure you stay all the way to the end to see how unexpected Dave and Paul found the performance:

photo 6

6 Responses to “Who Needs You to Shovel”

  1. All that shoveling in the city? I am perplexed. All of my conservative neighbors and such claim to know for a FACT that big city dwellers are lazy unemployed psycho welfare cheats who never get off the couch! Shoveling? Surely you jest!!
    Congrats on taking a cab. Poppa worries less when you do things like that. just out of curiosity, what does a cab cost from your work? ( I shall guess 12.00 and a 3.00 tip).

    • sethdellinger Says:

      haha the people on my street, at least, are OBSESSED with their sidewalks. Always out sweepin and shit. Even now I can hear shoveling! What are they doing????

      Yeah no need to worry anymore daddio, after my first few encounters with my commute in extreme weather, I’m not messing around anymore. I’m still commuting in some very uncomfortable conditions, but I will not tempt danger anymore!

      Good guess…it was $8 plus a $2 tip :)

  2. I love the orwells!!!!!

    • I downloaded the album. I like them but don’t love them…but I am officially IN LOVE with “Who Needs You”. It has grown on me exponentially. I think they will definitely gain a following and stay relevant for a long time. The experience, for me, reminds me of the few years that I followed The Cribs based solely on my appreciation of the one song “We Were Aborted”…I dropped away from them but lord knows they’ve got a big following.

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