My wife squealed when she told me the news: Amazon.com has a new feature that allows you to automatically obtain the mp3 version of a CD when you buy the hard copy. This allowed her to buy Justin Timberlake’s 2002 album Justified AND get the mp3 version for less than the mp3 version by itself.
It’s genius: Amazon has gone from being a less-shady version of eBay (I think) to spearheading a less stressful way to purchase music (I think) to now dumping inventory nobody wants by giving customers what they actually want for free as a bonus. My Lovely Wife’s hard copy of Justified is sitting on our kitchen table wedged between a two bills and a copy of that insipid Bulldog Bargains coupon book/newspaper/pirate hat kit/whatever the fuck that thing is supposed to be. Anyway, it hasn’t made it into the trash yet and Justified has yet to be opened. Why? Because it’s already on her computer.
It’s a less-shady version of before scalping sports tickets was legal, when people would sell a pen on eBay for $40 and give tickets free with the purchase … I think.
Anyway, in celebration of this new technology, here is a list of other phenomena to which Amazon.com has given way:
Two people in a corporate office listening to Rick Ross within 20 feet of each other:
Me: So I’m listening to Rick Ross’ new album, which I bought during this weird “Amazon MP3 purchasing benders” that I have sometimes.
Mitten: lmao I love it
Me: And I’m half enjoying it. I wouldn’t normally admit this to someone but …
Mitten: But….I’m such a gangster you knew I’d understand
Me: That’s precisely why I told you.
Mitten: I’m listening to Ricky Rozay right now too
Me: They still say Word, right?)
Mitten: oh yes
Mitten: I tend to prefer to spell it werd
Me: There’s one where I swear Rick is trying to ruin his own song but Usher carries the whole thing with his chorus.
Me: And the song prior, he was bailed out by Omarion.
Me: I was half thinking, “This is really sad when Omarion needs to carry you,” but I was also half thinking, “Omarion is doing one heck of a carry, though.”
Me: That having been said, the songs where Rick is by himself just sound like I’m overhearing a grumpy old man mumble at his television.
Mitten: It’s cuz he’s so fat
Mitten: He can’t muster enough air to sound like a normal human
A 31-year-old man arguing with himself about whether to purchase the new Christina Aguilera album: “Okay, but there’s literally a 93 percent chance this album is going to feel like my ears are having acupunctures BUT I’ve been a fan of Christina’s in a weird way ever since I had a crush on her when I was a teenager BUT You’re 31 now and if anyone saw this on your phone they would avoid you for the rest of your life BUT it would be kind of funny to have it on my phone in case I wanted to sarcastically play it for people BUT I don’t think anyone would be amused BUT you would have to admit to owning an album with Cee-Lo Green AND Blake Shelton featuring on it BUT I’ve already got a Katy Perry album and made someone burn Lady Gaga for me so it’s like this would come as TOO much of a surprise BUT if you listen to too many things sarcastically, people will think that’s what you’re actually into BUT it’s SIX FRICKING DOLLARS! Look! Each song is $1.29 apiece and there are like 13! That’s roughly $17 worth of music that MIGHT be hilarious but MIGHT cost me all of my friends but MIGHT let me reflect on my teenage crush but MIGHT be simply terrible but MIGHT actually be a half-decent listen but NOT likely and it’s NOT like you can see how hot she is in that little thumbnail album cover on your phone and it’s NOT like you can just blow that picture up and put it on your ceiling because your WIFE probably wouldn’t go for that. So there.”
I would go on to not buy the album.
Eliot playing Childish Gambino for me and me loving it, me playing The Heavy for Eliot and seeing him love it, agreeing to swap mp3s and forgetting, causing both of us to just buy them. You’re welcome, music industry.
If you look at my purchase history, it tells you that I thought Calvin Harris’ 2012 album was worth $8 but The xx’s 2012 album wasn’t worth $5: You know that movie, Moneyball? It wasn’t about me.
Owning two albums on which Andre 3000 tries to play an electric guitar (and a second in-office conversation mentioning Rick Ross):
Me: Amazon having CDs for download that cheap is simultaneously the greatest human miracle and the most devastating mistake manufacturer I’ve ever encountered.
Me: It’s like, I can’t just tell you “I bought The Heavy’s two albums for a combined $11!” without throwing in, “But I also bought a Rick Ross colostomy bag for $7.”
Botwin: I love Rick Ross.
Botwin: It’s more of a fascination, really.
Me: I’m sorry, but if I hear that woman say “Maybach Music” one more time I’m going to run my head through a ceiling light.
Me: What I did enjoy, though, was Rick Ross getting killed on his own album by every feature he had.
Me: In “3 Kings,” Dr. Dre sounds like Wilford Brimley and basically just reads an ad for his headphones, and his verse was still better than Rick’s.
Botwin: It’s Dre
Me: There was that one song where Andre 3000 tries playing an electric guitar and sounds like he just laid it on the floor and let a cat walk on it.
Me: And I know that was him because I bought Frank Ocean’s album ($8) and Andre 3000 is on that album too with an electric guitar. You could tell he had more time to practice, though.
Me: The cat, I mean.
Since the one-sentence predictions for the NFL playoffs became my second-most-viewed entry ever, here are one-sentence reviews of albums I bought in 2012 (in random order):
Grimes, “Visions” ($8): If I ever drive through Tokyo dodging the cops and make a movie out of it, this whole album will be the soundtrack.
Nothing but the Best: The Frank Sinatra Collection (99 cents!): If I only had 99 cents and I had to choose between buying this album and getting a blowjob from a gray-haired female hobo … I’m taking the blowjob, but only because I own the album already.
Twin Shadow, “Confess” ($5): It was one of my favorite music purchases last year, home of 11 great tracks and and my wife’s favorite album cover ever.
Common, “The Dreamer/The Believer” ($10): It starts with COMMON trying to pull off a BEEF track and actually goes DOWN hill from there.
Neon Indian, “Era Extrana” ($5): Good enough to get me to spend another $5 bucks on his first album and it was…
Neon Indian, “Psychic Chasms” ($5): …even better than the second album!
Walk the Moon, “Walk the Moon” ($5): It’ll turn your wife’s rage bar off but it’ll make any male friend want to jump out of your car into oncoming traffic.
Elton John, “Number Ones” ($5); Jimmy Buffett, “Songs You Know By Heart” ($5): Okay, now I’m just showing off. The end.