Brooklyn Bugle, Existential Stuff, Music, Opinion

How Did This Item Meet Your Expectations?

July 23, 2014

Because I recently purchased a Rubik’s Cube…

Amazon kindly wrote me and asked the following question: 

“So, Timothy Sommer, how did this item meet your expectations?”

Here’s what I (actually) wrote back: 

Dear Sirs and/or Madam and/or Former Member of Counting Crows now employed operating the mailbot that asks me to review products recently purchased on Amazon:

(If you are the latter, don’t take that personally. It’s not that I hate Counting Crows.  It’s just that I recognize that the 21st Century is our most Counting Crows-free century since the 19th Century, and we are really all the better for it, don’t you think?)

Firstly, I am glad, indeed, that you care about my expectations.  As it happens, I have expectations about a great many things, and I can only assume that if you care whether a simple Rubik’s Cube met my expectations, you probably care about some of my other expectations, too!

So here’s a partial list of things I have expectations about:

I expect Sally Field to be a nice person

I expect capers to liven up any dish.

When I see Sandy Kenyon talking to me from the TV screen in the back of cab, I expect I will think ‘My, I bet anyone who does a good George Takei impersonation could probably also do a very acceptable Sandy Kenyon impersonation.”

I expect the middle reliever to be an under-appreciated position in baseball, at least until they find a satisfying stat to honor its’ importance.

When I turn on Channel 4 news, I still expect to see Sue Simmons, dammit.

I expect one day to use the words “irredentism” and “conventicle” with authority. I look forward to such a day.

Whenever I am asked “What is the greatest guitar riff of all time?” I expect that I will answer “Jailbreak” by Thin Lizzy.

When Astronaut Michael Collins dies, I expect I will have to explain to people that he was the “other” guy on the Apollo 11 crew, the one who didn’t walk on the moon.  I then will likely interject that he is not to be confused with the Irish revolutionary Michael Collins, and I expect to receive a lot of blank stares after that. 

I expect that whenever I go on a tirade about the saxophone having no place in modern rock’n’roll, I will then pause and say “Well, yeh, that sax solo on ‘Walk on the Wild Side’ is pretty freaking hot.”

I expect that the fact that there is a Texas Rangers Second Baseman named Rougned Odor will always fill me with glee.

I expect that sometime in the next 12 months I will deliver a long and not necessarily solicited lecture to a very young and largely disinterested person on the genius of the Bonzo Dog Band.

I expect that sooner or later I will find myself on University Place in NYC and still be confused that it’s no longer a two-way street.

I expect that if my 18-year old self had been asked “Do you think a day will come when you would ever kind-of/sort-of like Steely Dan?” the answer would have been a resounding “No effing way.”

I expect that every time I see Bjork in the CVS on Henry Street I will automatically hear that amazing bass riff from the song “Birthday” by the Sugarcubes in my head.

Amazon, I suppose that last one demands a little further explanation.  See, the two celebrities I always see in Brooklyn Heights are Bjork and actor Paul Giamatti (I have never seen them together, by the way, though one day I saw one literally 90 seconds after I saw the other.  Does it matter which one I saw first that day?  No, it actually doesn’t, Amazon, but in case you were wondering it was Bjork).  Anyway, the first time I saw Bjork I was as baffled as Sarah Palin being shown an episode of Blackadder, and I thought to myself, “That can’t possibly be Bjork, it must be some other pixie-ish Eskimo chasing their kids around CVS,” but then I realized, “Nope, that’s definitely Bjork.” As for Paul Giamatti, well, I suspect I’d like to tell him how freaking genius he was as John Adams and as Harvey Pekar, but you know, I don’t like interjecting myself into the life of innocent celebrities unless the time is just right.  But I don’t need to tell you that, Amazon, I cannot even imagine the celebrities you know!  Phillip Roth, J.K. Rowling, Cheech Marin, Viggo Mortensen, George R.R. Martin, George Martin, Chris Martin, you’ve known them all.

Where was I?

Oh…about the Rubik’s cube…it’s a freaking Rubik’s cube.  Did it meet my expectations?  As stated, it performed it’s cube-like functions in a suitably Rubik way.  I mean, what do you want me to say here.  It’s a Rubik’s Cube.  It interested me for about eight minutes, then I began to think about Great Pizza Slices I’ve had in the past and the infinite superiority of the mono mix of the Sgt. Pepper album to the stereo one.  I thought I had lost it for a while, like maybe a day and a half, but it was just under a sweater.  By the way, it’s likely Adam Durwitz (your old band mate in Counting Crows) will be growing hair on his head again before anyone ever tops Benny Tudino’s in Hoboken. For the pizza slice, that is. So did the Rubik’s cube meet my expectations?  Well, yes, I guess it did.

Kind regards, Timothy A. Sommer

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  • ujh

    Tim Sommer seems to have a lot of time on his hands in crafting this lengthy response to an amazon automatic prompt. I receive them all the time and now simply click them away.

  • Jazz

    GFY! Would you like a cookie?