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Day vs. Season’s Pass

March 13, 2021

[Albums 877 – 882 / 1001]

“I play for keeps, ’cause I might not make it back”
– Bon Jovi, Wanted Dead or Alive

Have you ever been to the amusement park (formerly sponsored by Paramount), Canada’s Wonderland?

Over the past few decades, when I’ve been to the park, I’ve had 2 distinct experiences.

1) In the years when I have not had a ‘Season’s Pass’ – every second is accounted for. If you know you’re not going to be back anytime soon, you make each minute of the day count, maximizing the experience.

2) In my summers as a teen / in my 20s, I occasionally had a ‘Season’s Pass,’ meaning you paid an annual fee and visited the park as often as you desired.

In those instances, each day at the park was experienced at a much more leisurely pace – knowing I’d be back, I wasn’t concerned with absorbing every possible square inch of the park as efficiently as possible.

Instead, comforted in the knowledge that a return trip wouldn’t be too distant on the horizon, I just enjoyed the ride(s).

.

With certain albums on the 1001 list, sometimes I feel a bit like Jon Bon in 1986.

When I estimate the probability of my revisiting is minuscule, I try to listen as attentively as possible, to glean as much as I can from the album during my short visit.

Typically for me, this would be the case with the ‘not really my cuppa’ albums.

This week, that included Boards of Canada’s Music Has the Right to Children / David Holmes’ Let’s Get Killed / Big Black’s Atomizer.

Because it was relatively clear relatively quickly that I wasn’t the target audience, my mind promptly shifted into probability mode.

Maybe it was the Carpe Diem scene from Dead Poets Society (or perhaps the slightly less inspirational scene from Community!) that stuck with me: if I’m not going to be back, I might as well try to seize the day during my requisite listens.

Through this lens, I probably caught more details than I might have otherwise, such as David Holmes’ tip of the hat to Serge Gainsbourg with his track, Don’t Die Just Yet.

I’ve also started to brainstorm ways to include Boards of Canada’s Triangles & Rhombuses in a future geometry lesson.

And thanks to Big Black, I’ve added Jordan, Minnesota to my itinerary of places/locations to visit while listening to said geographical-name-checking songs!

I paid more attention in the short-term because I’m less interested in the long-term.

.

Not sure if irony is the correct term, but it seemed strange to me that I had the inverse reaction for albums that immediately appealed.

Whether it was Stereolab’s Emperor Tomato Ketchup / Dennis Wilson’s Pacific Ocean Blue / Earth, Wind & Fire’s That’s the Way of the World, if I was instantly enamored with the album, I stopped listening attentively.

Because it was relatively clear relatively quickly that I was right-smack-dab-in-the-middle of the target audience, my mind once again must have shifted into probability mode.

Although this time, I was the opposite mindset of Jon Bon: since I’m probably going to be back, I don’t need to play for keeps.

Instead, it was more like I had a Season’s Pass to these albums, with the luxury of exploring at a leisurely pace and revisiting at my convenience.

As such, I don’t have many specific memories of individual tracks, but more of a highly favourable lasting impression of the overall listening experience!

…..

Verbalize the Positive

Whenever Canada’s Wonderland introduced a new roller-coaster, the older rides became seriously under-appreciated (and thus, had considerably shorter, and sometimes non-existent, lines).

As a result, back in the day, I loved going on the roller-coaster, Dragon Fyre, repeatedly, sometimes without even having to exit the ride!

From → 1970s, 1980s, 1990s

25 Comments
  1. Haven’t been back to CW since I was a kid. Since I don’t like roller coasters (life is short enough without giving myself heart attacks “for fun”), there doesn’t seem a whole lot of point to going. Now, our kids are only just getting to the age where it might seem cool to go, so maybe I’ll be there at some point. Watching from the sidelines.

    I’d have thought that ‘season’s pass’ philosophy might’ve applied to this entire 1001 albums journey you’re on. I mean, by implication and inference from the book, these are the albums for which you ought to feel that way!

    • I feel that way with the carnival-esque rides that just sort of toss you around – I’m happier watching other people have fun on those ones!

  2. The Dragon’s Fyre was our first ride when CW opened (in 81?). My mom and aunt actually went on with us. Talk about brave. I never liked upside down rides much, but I do like roller coasters. The last time I was at the park was 2018 with some work colleagues, before that it was 2004. I had a ton of fun this trip, but was really sore and beat up afterwards. The rides cause a lot of bruising for us seniors, lol. I came home and K said, “Did you get it out of your system?? You never have to go back…” I think I will be back…

    • Those wooden roller-coasters are terrific but also terrifically dangerous – I definitely feel every bump on the wilde beast & minebuster these days!

      • Two more of my favourite rides too. And Thunder Run, and Ghoster Coaster!

      • Both classics – and probably both are about my speed of choice at this stage of life!

  3. The three I own are the last three, so sounds like we’re on the same page.

  4. That’s a job lot of LPs and no mistake. I can tick off 1, 4, and 5. Although I cannot see that tally changing, I can report that B of C and the Stereolab are amongst my favourites in their respective fields.

    • With the stereolab album in particular, I was impressed by how quickly I was convinced.
      Another one like it from the past few years was Odessey and Oracle – a few seconds into Care of Cell 44, yep, I’m persuaded!

  5. That’s a good point about trying to be attentive when listening when it’s unlikely you’re gonna make it back to some of these. Even if an album is as great as Wilson’s or Boards of Canada, there are always the albums that remain your favourites and that you want to spend time listening to.

    • My thanks, J – it’s funny how the philosophy backfires though when it comes to being a tourist in your own town.
      When we visited Glasgow, we saw as much as humanly possible, knowing it was a rare visit.
      But in our hometown, we’ve hardly seen any of the tourist attractions, thinking we could see them anytime – but then we never do!

  6. That was back when Jon Bon knew what he was talking about. Now, not so much. I like that approach to the albums. Solid plan.

  7. I was last at Wonderland back in 83 on a family trip and the day before we were there ‘Asia’ was playing.
    I think Asia had a hard time selling tickets to this show as they were playing the same night The Police pulled into town at the CNE as they were giving away Asia tickets literally for free.

  8. jprobichaud permalink

    Dragon Fyre and SkyRider were always my two favourites but I haven’t been to Canada’s Wonderland in decades. Maybe once this pandemic thing is over…

    • I hadn’t been since the mid-2000s before the summer of 2019 – it was good to be back!

      • jprobichaud permalink

        Yeah. I think I’d enjoy it but not sure my wife would be of the same mind.

  9. CW gets a big “No Thanks” from me. Putting my life in the hands of carnies doesn’t seem like a good idea for me.

    I pay attention to longer movies extra close because I know I won’t be revisiting them often. Even though I have seen The Godfather 1 & 2 a dozen times each, I absorb every second. But I can go to the bathroom during UHF and not pause the film.

    • Though what’s the TBone song about open door bathroom trips? I think I’d want to keep the door open to at least hear the audio for, Badgers?!

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