No Purple Reign
Just when I was getting all excited about launching a "Put a Prince in the Senate" boomlet in MN, an alert reader named Aaron Brethorst reminded me that His Royal Badness (the proper appelation for the Artist Once Formerly Known As Prince) is a Jehovah's Witness. Among that sect's peculiar beliefs is a fidelity to the Radical Reformation tradition of refusing to hold public office. (And for those of you who just think of Jehovah's Witnesses as the strange folks who press copies of Watchtower on you as you race towards your next appointment, they suffered brutal persecution by the Nazis for their defiance of secular authority).
In any event, this deflating news was an appropriate rebuke for my hubristic dabbling in recent popular music culture. I can cite rock lyrics
from the Beatles through Roxy Music and New Wave and up to early Punk with encyclopedic recall. And in part due to my parental responsibilities, I've tried to make a Rock Snob comeback with casual mastery of the oeuvres of White Stripes and Sleater-Kinney (both of whom I genuinely like), and have even risked narcolepsy by spending a lot of time in the company of Radiohead and Wilco. But the 80s and early 90s found me listening to NPR more than college radio; I'd rather watch paint peeling than music videos (which to me represent the final victory of the basic this-ain't-about-the-music ethos of Disco); and thus, I am uniquely ill-equipped to promote Rock Gods of that era for public office.
But as another reader suggested: maybe we should find out if Kirby Puckett is a Democrat!