On this day back in 1969, the Manson family murdered Sharon Tate and four others to prove that — good God, I have no idea. Since the subject of Sharon Tate has been rather too well well picked over, I’d like to talk about The Jim Carroll Band.
On their first album, Catholic Boy, they did a song, “It’s Too Late.” It starts off with the provocative lyrics, “It’s too late, to fall in love with Sharon Tate.” But the following line does not live up to it, “But it’s too soon, to ask me for the words that are carved on my tomb.” (Not anymore.)
I liked the song very much when I was young because of the line, “I’m here to give you my heart, and you want some fashion show.” Of course I liked that line! That’s what all sensitive young men think. I am now of the opinion that sensitive young men are just as much jerks as any other guys. But I guess we are all allowed our delusions.
Now the line I like these lines:
They only part their legs for what’s negative
They, they’re so decadent
Until their daddy’s money from home’s all spent
To be honest, I was pretty hot on that last line when I was young too. But now I’m focused on the second line. I think things have changed. Yes, it used to be cool to be negative. Now it’s even worse: it is cool to be ironically detached. As a person who suffers from both ironic detachment and negativity, I have a great fondness for people who manage earnest optimism. But if we can’t have that (and I actually don’t want it) — at least pick a side (and there are many). Pretending that you don’t care just makes you boring. And that’s what Carroll is getting at in those lyrics.