Last night I was out and about doing some last minute shopping for stuff for Christmas stockings, photocopying the Christmas letter and getting a few other odds and ends. It was a night in which not only was it helpful to get your zen on, it was essential. Everyone and their brother was out last night, trying to score bargains, etc. an d parking at most places was at a premium. But rather than be irritated with it, I just went with the flow. You really had no other choice that didn't result in spontaneous human combustion.
Anyway, during this whole thing, I was listening to Madonna (I know, shocking.) While I was in the car, it was Hard Candy. While I was walking around the stores, it was American Life. And it was during this time period that I figured out the biggest problem with Hard Candy (and yes, I know this blog has been filled with musings on why Hard Candy ultimately disappointed. Deal.) Hard Candy is kind of like the one night stand that is all titillating and naughty and seems like a good idea at the time. Only after it's all over do you discover that all you have left is a bad taste in your mouth and an STD. American Life, on the other hand, is the marriage. It is moody and joyful and emotional and sometimes makes you want to run screaming from the room because it drives you so fucking crazy. But it's the real deal, it's the one that makes you feel alive. It's the authentic one, the one worth your time and energy. Years later, it still resonates.
Give me American Life any day of the week.