An Incomplete Thought About Being Exotic According to Musical Tastes

There’s a race going on, and it has nothing to do with running. It has to do with media consumption.

It used to be that when someone asked me about a show, a musician, a book, a movie, if I hadn’t consumed it, I became apologetic. I went out and found it immediately. I thought other people saw it as an affront to my intelligence or culture if I didn’t know what they were referencing. I had to be in on the conversation. It was important.

When you are constantly consuming media that people tell you is life-changing and essential, you start to learn something. You learn that everyone has their own list of life-changing and essential media. It’s not really the same for anyone.

I really like the Dave Matthews Band. I started listening to them in high school because a lot of my friends were. But then I grew attached to them because I liked them. Then I got to college. And almost no one I befriended listened to Dave Matthews Band. Everyone else became really exotic and different and sophisticated and cool because they listened to the xx and Bon Iver and Grizzly Bear and stuff like that.

What I failed to realize is that I was just as different and foreign to my Bon-Iver-listening friends as they were to me.

Media should never be a race. It should be enjoyable.

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