I’m doing that thing again where I go to the Internet Archive … find videos of local bands playing in summer park-and-rec concert series … watch the videos with the closed captioning on … and laugh uproariously as the poor-quality captions make these local musicians seem like they’re spouting surreal streams of consciousness.
I rarely fail to find this hilarious. And really, we should all have something in our lives that can be counted on to make us convulse with laughter without causing any direct harm to anybody else.
This time around I’m watching a video from my old hometown, of a three-piece rockabilly Fifties-type band grinding it out one summer evening before the pandemic. They’ve got the hollow-body Gretsch and the big upright bass and … well, a distinctive lyrical take on things, at least according to the captions.
(I won’t include their name in this post. In case someone happens to be searching for them online, I wouldn’t want this post to be found and the poor quality of the closed captioning to be held against them. However, I will link to the video in question, in case anyone out there wants to confirm that this exists.)
Last night I dreamed I was the elderly Henry Aaron’s home health care aide (no, seriously, I did.) Tonight I hope to consider some of these captions in my sleep, and perhaps figure out what bizarre set of occurrences they are referring to.
The bomb room? The little dog? A jug-toting bishop? “The burning in the bud”? A folded body? Singing along with blood? Conservative lips? A shooter with a book by the sea?
I think the closed captioning is trying to tell me something (the plot of a really wild novel, maybe?) and it has seized on this obscure video as its means to reach me.