This week, The Hard Times takes a listen to 1983’s “Over the Edge,” the third album of the legendary American punk band Wipers.
This is an album I was excited to revisit, not only because I’ve been a Wipers fan since college, but also because for the past few weeks, I’ve been stuck plant-sitting for my eccentric neighbor while they try to set the world record for being in the background crowd at “Good Morning America” most consecutive days. Good luck, Mr. Lanford! We’re all watching!
Anyway, I heard somewhere music is essential for plant livelihood, so I made sure to drop the needle on the record in the vicinity of Mr. Lanford’s prized venus fly trap. Well, we didn’t even make it to “Doom Town” before that thing started growing ten feet tall and gaining the gift of speech. I was amazed, but really, when you think about it, that’s the power of music!
By the time we got to “Romeo,” it started begging me to feed it, so naturally I gave it all the human blood I could find (there were lots of jars of it in Mr. Lanford’s basement, I assume for emergencies like this.) It spit it out with disgust and chided me for assuming it wanted blood to eat, sarcastically referring to itself as “the venus blood trap” for the rest of the conversation. I guess I have a lot of learning to do.
As “No One Wants an Alien” cranked through the speaker system, I frantically scrambled to find some flies for the increasingly irritable vegetation. I couldn’t locate any! (Well, ok, I found a few, but I had worked up quite the hunger myself from rushing around, so…) Well, long story short, I realized there was an airport across the street (not sure why I hadn’t noticed it before, the plane sounds drowned out most of the record so far.) And it didn’t take me long to convince the plant that the planes were actually big ol’ juicy flies, ready for the eating.
The venus fly trap gave me a hearty earful about proper greenhouse management, over the din of both “No Generation Gap” and the aircrafts taking off, and lifted itself up by the roots and dragged itself across the street to dine like a king. By the time the record was over, that thing was housing a 747 at an altitude of 35,000 feet. I couldn’t help but salute.
I still think my statement about the power of music holds up. We should play this album in the Amazon rainforest and see if we can’t get a few more miles of greenery back up and running. Just remember to re-route any air traffic.
Score: 14/76 days before Mr. Lanford breaks the record. Confident I’ll replace the plant by then.