05 May 2010

Belting it out

Soft. Lost his edge. Past his prime.

Phrases that have never been applied to Iggy Pop.

Many rock ‘n’ roll musicians get mocked for continuing to perform as they get older. But Iggy Pop, in his 60s, is still respected as a rocker. When asked how, he said:

I’m not bald, I’m not fat, and I’m not safe.

I want to be the Iggy Pop of science.

Academics are a bit like musicians: They often do their best work when they’re young, and reach a point where they’re often considered to have lost it and not contributing much new.

Today, I got back one of the tools I need to help keep me on that target. I got my belt back.

Yeah, a belt. Despite my name, I’ve never been very good with non-attachment. I bought this belt – a thick black one with a noisy buckle – when I was doing my Ph.D., and have worn it damn near daily since. Last month, the buckle wore through some on the leather around one of the notches, and I thought I was going to have to replace the belt. But I was able to get just that worn leather replaced, and now it’s almost as good as new.

My appreciation of this belt has gone up the last few years. From time to time, I’ve gotten off the rails, health and living wise. You can’t really ignore it when you’re notching the belt up two notches from where you usually have.

And I’m pretty damn proud that today, the belt is on the same notch it was on in grad school. And I still have hair on my head. And I’m still working on my goal for the year.

1 comment:

Bjørn Østman said...

But, while Iggy is still strong, he has never really burnt very strongly, always standing in the shadow of brighter luminaries. One could opine that he work just isn't as good as that of many others.