"Oh no!" the cry came from the living room. "Is that Pink Floyd?"
My wife was having a moment. She was listening to one of her favorite pieces of music, "Shine On You Crazy Diamond," which should have been a pleasant enough distraction, but playing behind the song were images of the band that made the music. For this she was unprepared.
"Is that? Really?"
When I entered the room, there was a picture of the band from 1973 on the television. It was evidence of the era that produced the album Wish You Were Here, which remains our house go-to for Pink Floyd record to listen to all the way through. In spite of all those who insist on Dark Side of the Moon or The Wall. But that didn't mean that my wife was ready to have corporeal form brought to the ethereal sounds of her youth. Even more confounding was the juxtaposition of eras, cutting to interview clips of present day Nick Mason, Roger Waters, David Gilmour and Richard Wright. How could these geezers be responsible for Welcome To The Machine?
I understood her quandary. There was a time, back when Pink Floyd could make a joke about "Which one's Pink?" That I could not have picked any of the four members of the band from a lineup. What they looked like was not my concern. I was much more interested in the sounds they made. They lived in the Oh Wow section of my record collection, which brings me to the other anecdote about how my high school girlfriend once asked me if she should file their records under F for Floyd or P for Pink. Which pinballs me back to a question comedian, and creator of the Sledge-O-Matic, Gallagher once raised, "Does Joe Jackson have to appear in his videos?"
All of this to say that I needed to come to the rescue of my poor wife who was having the images in her mind's eye shattered by the documentary I so thoughtlessly left playing in the living room I thought she might enjoy it. Never mind that she was forced to confront her own youth and mortality by gazing on rock stars from another epoch. She didn't need to be tormented by that. Recognizing celebrities in various states of decay is more my concern, though tracking my own disintegration sometimes distracts me form that. When Elvis sings, it should be the cool black leather Elvis from the '68 Comeback Special. When you hear Nirvana, Kurt Cobain is alive. When you hear Pink Floyd, well, imagine a saucerful of secrets.