On being 33
It’s 00:22, British Summer Time, by which fact it means that I am 33.
As I’ve done since some number of years ago, it’s time for my annual birthday missive, in which I comment on my life and get massively misunderstood by a subsection of the world.
I’m 33. It’s such an insignificant number, isn’t it? It’s nothing that anybody cares about. Once we hit 13 and 16 and 18 and 21 and 30, it’s only decades that matter. I cared about 27. I cared about 30, but I find it hard to get worked up about 33.
All I can think about is records. 33 and 1/3. An LP, being played at the proper speed, a diamond-tipped needle not destroying anything, just going on as it’s meant to.
There’s part of me that isn’t happy with things, that niggling little part of me that is determined to destroy any accomplishment. But I’m also determined to not let that little bastard win.
So I’m 33. I’m not a doctor yet. I’m not a parent yet. I’m not many things that I could judge myself against.
But I am happy. And, after all these years, maybe that’s the most important thing.
I’ve spent so many years trying to be the remastered album, released digitally, for some new generation of poseur to wank over. But I’m a vinyl girl, and always have been.
So, at a few minutes into 33 by local time, here’s my declaration of the year to come:
33 is my year of vinyl. It’s my year of mastering things, or originality. It’s my year of slow rotation, full of crackles, full of character. It’s my year of authenticity. It’s my year of being iconic, and totemic. It’s my year of being something archetypical.
I’ve been buying records since I was a kid. I worship them. I love them above any other source of music. Everything else is false to me. That’s what this year is going to be about. It’s the year where things become real. Where the digital copies get put aside by those who care.
It’s the year of 33, and I’m ready for it. I’m ready for the needle to hit the record. I’m ready for the seconds of crackle before that first note. I’m ready.