The Things Pandora Knows

Pandora knows things about me even I don’t know.  She knew that I loved the song “Talking In Your Sleep” before I’d ever heard it.  She knew that I loved Backstreet Boys and Fugazi and *NSync and Hüsker Dü and the Chieftains.

Pandora’s not perfect.  It look her a while to know that, while I like Lady Gaga, I can’t stand Madonna.  She still hasn’t figured out that there is a limit to how much one human being can possibly listen to “You Spin Me Round (Like a Record).”  She might never get around to knowing that my favorite song is “Return Of The Mack.”

She figured out pretty early on that I could approach near-complete obsession with Hall & Oates.  Unfortunately, this also came with the realization that my husband’s opinion of H&O is somewhere on the order of, well, this.

We’ve been together almost fifteen years, so I’m not sure how I missed his hatred of Hall & Oates.  Sure, there were signs.  I believe I told him more than a decade ago that I thought that “Kiss On My List” was the most perfect pop song ever written.  That statement was met with silence, which I suppose I took for complete agreement or awe at Daryl Hall’s genius.  He can’t really stand Todd Rundgren, either, but I took that as more of an acquired taste thing.   I comforted myself with the knowledge that I’d introduced him to Ian Hunter, and that he listened to Ian Hunter’s albums even when I wasn’t around.

But, when I mentioned that Pandora played “Out Of Touch” and it made my day, the truth came out: he can’t stand Hall & Oates.  Worse still, I had our elder son watch the video on YouTube; after a minute, he dismissed it as elevator music.  (I believe his exact words were, “What is this lousy music?”)

So imagine my surprise when I came home and saw this on the computer screen.  No, there was no Damascus Road conversion.  An Internet friend of ours, Keola Donaghy, Hawai’ian language and music guru, had posted it on Facebook, and it was my husband’s way of telling me I needed to finally sign up for Facebook.  (He also announces the number of ‘friends’ he has nearly every morning.  “I’m up to 504…”  This from the most asocial man on the planet.)**

But, now that I can see Todd Rundgren singing with Daryl Hall, I don’t NEED to go on Facebook.  Heck, I won’t even need Pandora for another couple of days.  (Unless, of course, she’s decided I need to gorge myself on George Michael and Dead Milkmen and Spandau Ballet.  Then Pandora will officially be my best friend.)

…but there is one weird thing about that Daryl Hall website: I signed up to be on the email list, and they wanted me to certify that I’m over 14.  Does anyone under 14 actually KNOW who Daryl Hall is?

**Lest you think my husband is one of those people who accumulate Facebook friends so that they can announce it to their wives every morning, he uses Facebook as a social network to connect with other Irish-language speakers, so 480 of those friends are likely Irish language speakers and at least one is a genius of an accordionist and the rest are former coworkers and (since I don’t use Facebook) some of my own cousins and college friends.  He only posts in Irish, except when he takes those Facebook quizzes like “Which 80s Mustache Are You?” which you try to answer in such a way that the result is Tom Selleck but which invariably result in, well, John Oates.

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