I love doing creative stuff. While this blog may be describing a variety of pleasure pursuits, writing it is pleasurable in itself. My university spending money came from photography. My time in the kitchen is occasionally professional (the output perhaps less so), but it’s something I would do for free. And, it doesn’t take a savant to observe that the various Cloof brands are the products of a dangerous mind.
Few things, though, tax my creativity more than gift shopping for Andrea. She doesn’t do delayed gratification – if she sees something she likes, she buys it. One of these impulse buys was an iPod shuffle, for when she goes running (no, her gait is not a shuffle). Wouldn’t it be nice, I thought, if she could download music for it? If we lived just about anywhere other than South Africa it wouldn’t be a problem, but iTunes is not available to us. I even tried getting a friend to buy an iTunes voucher with a UK credit card.
Eventually I found eMusic, which is available to South African residents. The subscription came with 30 downloads per month, and a bonus bundle of 50 downloads. The problem is, if you don’t download those tracks in the months they’re earned, you lose them. An even bigger problem is that it’s a big struggle to find music on eMusic you’d want to download. This is a product of the way that copyrights have been tied up around the world.
Eventually I resorted to eMusic’s charts, and found Joan Jett & the Blackhearts, which was actually a re-discovery. When I was 16 years old I Love Rock ‘n Roll was a big hit for them, and watching Ms Jett on the music video at that time was something that made my adolescent loins rather excited.
I have always done my mountain biking to the soundtrack of wind, tyres scrunching gravel and my heaving breath. However, my phone upgrade late last year came in the form of the Nokia XpressMusic. I started downloading some music to listen to when cycling and have discovered that hills seem to be a little less painful to climb when one is listening to certain kinds of music. Joan Jett – in a different sense – is now once again of service to me. It would take a lot more than Bad Reputation to turn me into a hot-shot cyclist, but it isn’t far off an intravenous shot of adrenaline.
Nokia’s music store appears to deliver the solution we’ve been waiting for. Let’s see.
Listening to music is a source of pleasure, but I’ll leave writing about it to the experts. Knowing that I have never produced a pleasurable sound, I’ll leave that bit of creativity to the experts as well!