One of the benefits of gaining maturity is knowing that there are some things you like: some styles, some foods, some activities that are simply your personal preferences, regardless of current fashion, style or trend. I have found this true in myself when it comes to donuts, ice cream and music – or so I thought.
There’s a nationally known, local donut store in our area that carries bizarre donuts: bacon maple bars, raised donuts topped with Captain Crunch or Fruit Loops cereals – and those are the mild combinations. I have never been to this donut store and have no desire to go. Give me a good maple bar, with creamy frosting (not the hard, glazed type) and I’m happy. Ditto with ice cream. In an effort not to be outdone by the donut stores, we also have a new ice creamery with flavors such as brown ale with bacon, lemon basil sorbet and honey balsamic strawberry with cracked pepper. Again, give me a classic, rich luscious coffee flavored ice cream and I’m happy. Then there’s music. I have listened to various versions of rock my entire life. I’m not embarrassed to say that the classic rock station, along with the “oldies” station, is hardcoded into my car radio. I do listen to other types of music occasionally (quiet times or when I’m working at my desk), but normally I prefer to rock out. Recently a friend told me I should check out Pandora and I was appalled. Why would I want an electronic jukebox to pick out music for me when I already know what I like? I like music I know with words I can sing along with (even if my version of the words if often way off from the actual lyrics).
So, I’m set in my ways. I like my maple bar sans bacon and with creamy frosting, I like coffee ice cream or even just plain old vanilla and I like my music to rock -- as I said, “or so I thought.” Two recent developments have caused me to question my set-in-my-ways beliefs: my husband bought a new car and I drove six 16-year-olds to Seattle and back. My husband’s new car has premier radio programming available and one afternoon, while scanning through channels, I came across a jazz station that took my breath away. While I enjoy jazz as background music when I’m working, I’ve found that this station’s music draws me to it every time I get in his car. While I normally like to rock out and sing along while driving, I’m finding that I am truly enjoying the calming sounds of this jazz station. I can feel myself physically relax as I listen. I dread the day when his free trial ends. On the other end of the music-style spectrum, while driving to Seattle and back with the six 16-year-olds, I listened to what I would call rap and dance music for several hours straight. The suburban looked and sounded like some souped-up hot rod with music blaring and girls dancing in their seats. While most of it didn’t appeal to me, there were two songs that kept running through my mind over the next few days. I found myself on the iTunes store downloading not only those two songs but also a couple of others of the same genre.
So, maybe I’m not so set in my ways. Maybe there’s music left to learn. I did go back and try the sea salt caramel ice cream. It was okay, but won’t be on any of my favorite playlists. The bacon maple bar, though? I don’t think so.