Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Saturday Night Fever

Saturday night is's our first date...what to do, what to do, what to do... This is a daunting question, one that takes you to the stretches and limits of your imagination.  "Should I opt for excitement or quiet entertainment?"  or "What can we do that we will both enjoy?" are questions you may think of when deciding.  Another somewhat stupefying thought routinely contemplated could be, "Will we both have a good time?"  If you are not an audiophile, you will always swim amidst such uncertainties.  And then your car dies or a blizzard hits and all of your hopes are dashed.  Whatever was planned is now gone...unless you were planning to shovel snow on your date, but I doubt if there will be a second date if that is what you had in mind.  Now, you are stuck at home...alone.

But if you are an audiophile, there is always consolation to such a disaster in your ears and, unlike a first date, they never let you down. Think of how much pleasure your system consistently gives you and how much you look forward to "flipping on the switch."  Think of that time you drove home almost in a panic after scoring that much sought after album at a used record store or flea market.  Think of the anticipation you have, nervous to the extent of trembling, when hearing it for the first time.  Saturday nights can be consistently pretty amazing, even when you cannot go out...that is, if you are an audiophile.

Unlike video games or Netflix, an audiophile's system is - to him or her - almost orgasmic.  There were times we listened to something that made the hair on the back of our necks stand up - in a good way. The new conductor's interpretation of a an old favorite could bring tears to your eyes as could a new singer of an old classic.  I remember hearing Norah Jones' "Come Away with Me" for the first time in of all places the rig in my RV and almost breaking out in a cold sweat.  "Who is this?" is all I could ask my nephew who stopped off to buy it in some small town in rural Idaho (is this an oxymoron?  Is there anywhere in Idaho that is not rural?).  The only thing I remember is slowing down immediately to lower the road noise and better hear that angelic voice while wiping the tears from my eyes.

Audiophiles can have such experiences every Saturday night regardless of the weather, your car's condition, or if unlucky in scoring those cherished tickets to that long-awaited performance.  Audiophiles can always count on their rigs to deliver hours upon hours of jaw dropping emotions, crescendos of inspiration, and moments of clarity.  An audiophile's rig can become an extension of themselves, and not only on Saturday nights.

Think about all of the times you were so moved by what you heard that inspired you to do more...or to try something different...or to find peace and bliss.  Think of how you regularly escaped from the pressures of your job, the depression of news headlines, and similar personal tragedies by simply hearing your favorite track.  Tubes glowing and everything is warmed up, ready for who knows what will emerge from those amazing speakers, now that's Saturday Night Fever!

If you feel much the same way when thinking about the loss of you stereo, if you cringe when someone grabs one of your record albums not knowing if finger prints might appear on its edges, if you look forward to sitting down with your feet propped up sipping some libation in front of your rig after a hard day, you are undoubtedly an audiophile.  Saturday Night Fever for an audiophile can be a bit different from what John Travolta portrayed.

Thank God for that!

Yours for higher fidelity,
Philip Rastocny

I do not use ads in this blog to help support my efforts. If you like what you are reading, please remember to reciprocate, My newest title is called Where, oh Where did the Star of Bethlehem Go? It’s an astronomer’s look at what this celestial object may have been, who the "Wise Men" were, and where they came from. Written in an investigative journalism style, it targets one star that has never been considered before and builds a solid case for its candidacy.

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