In Roger and Hammerstein’s “The Sound of Music,” there is a charming little song titled “These Are My Favorite Things.” Here are some of my hardly charming least favorite things:
– People who are forever asking you to have a nice day and infinitum, when only God has the power to bring about this much deserved blessedness.
– People who use the time-honored word “awesome” as a synonym for wonderful instead of the traditional usage: causing, or expressive of, awe or terror.
– Those with untamed voices who persist in singing “The Star Spangled Banner” at public gatherings. Personally, I’ve often wished America had chosen as their national anthem the eminently singable “America the Beautiful” or “My Country. Tis of Thee” instead of the martial and practically unsingable “Star Spangled Banner.”
– Those who say that legalized same sex union are destroying traditional marriage, when the truth of the matter is that traditional marriage was destroyed long before same sex marriage was even heard of.
– People who mutilate their bodies with unseemly tattoos and make Ray Bradbury a famous 1950’s novel “The Illustrated Man,” a tasteless contemporary reality.
– Those who revel in such tiresome reality shows as “Keeping Up with the Kardashians” and “The Real Housewives of Atlanta,” and the crowd pleasing inanities like “American Idol” and “The Voice.’” I wish an 88-year-old man like myself didn’t have to be so adversely critical of the latter two programs, as I have friends and relatives who seem to adore them. But I do feel that so many of the songs I hear on these programs are monotone and lacking in melody, and the deafening rock and roll one encounters on them in just a tad below noise.
This is a sad assessment to have to make as I lived through the golden age of pop music, beginning in the 1920s and 1930s, and ending with the incomparable Elvis Presley and The Beatles in the 1960s. I’m still a whistler at heart, though I find it virtually impossible nowadays to whistle any of the tunes I hear on “America Idol” and “The Voice.”
In any event, I hope my list of least favorite things won’t prove to be offensive to all the million who treasure them, but as Polonius famously said in Shakespeare’s “Hamlet,” “To thine own self be true.”