Is about challenging preconceptions, surprising us, delivering the unexpected.

I just got finished watching John Oliver. The funniest part was the MSNBC newscaster who kept quoting rap lyrics to make his point, making himself look ridiculous in the process. And then there was a long expose on corporate taxes, which I actually am very familiar with, devouring three newspapers a day and surfing stories online in between. Nothing makes me angrier than ignorance, which is plentiful, every day I hear people speak inanities and untruths with soulful conviction, and if I bother to correct them, which I’ve learned not to, they get all puffed up and say I’m the problem and I’m wrong which is why I’ve ceased doing this. America is all about getting along, especially amongst millennials, and then someone jumps the track, delivers the unexpected, and you’re wowed.

Now let’s be clear, this is not about more cheese on your nachos, more explosions in your movie, no, creativity is an intellectual thing, it speaks to your brain, not your wallet, and when it resonates…you’re thrilled.

This was the essence of the sixties, this is why the right wing excoriates that decade, because of the decision by young people to question norms and authorities and wow the audience, in the arts, in clothing, in expression… Believe me, you didn’t swear in public like they did in the sixties previously, there was no such thing as free love, although the birth control pill helped, remember tie-dye? It wasn’t about fashion, so much as self-expression, letting your freak flag fly, which no one does anymore unless they’re trying to gain followers on Instagram.

But this creativity was evidenced most in art. It was about pushing limits. Look at album covers, which started as commercial art and ended up an art form unto themselves. But even more were the records…there was a constant testing of the limits, whether it be Frank Zappa with the first double album and then the “Sgt. Pepper” parody “We’re Only In It For The Money,” or the Doors’ “The End.” And it was in movies and theatre, how about the nude scene in “Hair”? Never underestimate the power of shock, can you say “I Am Curious (Yellow)”?

And just when the John Oliver show was winding down, when it looked like it was over, the host starts talking about this Russel Crowe divorce auction, and its overpriced, irrelevant items.

But it wasn’t a joke. Actually, it was. After making fun of the items for sale, after lambasting the person who purchased a jock strap for seven thousand dollars, Oliver revealed it was HIM!

The show bought so much crap, to deliver to the sole remaining Blockbuster store in Alaska.

This is not Jimmy Fallon trying to create viral material, this is a bunch of hooligans trying to freak out and crack up their audience. This is why you used to go to the live show, FOR THE UNEXPECTED! When it was clear who the stars were, not the people in the audience, and you had to have talent to stand on stage.

It was kind of like tech in the last twenty years, we were addicted to the creative explosion of the sixties. There were books, like Kurt Vonnegut’s “Cat’s Cradle,” when you read the liner notes for Dead albums and saw the publishing company was Ice Nine, you were clued in. There was Richard Brautigan’s “Trout Fishing In America,” there was even “Bob & Ted & Carol & Alice.”

And sure everybody wanted to make money, but there were no billionaires, and you could make it on minimum wage. Science was putting men on the moon, but art was keeping us fulfilled.

Back when the building blocks were taught in school, before home schooling was invented, when we were all in it together trying to find our way.

It’s these creative moments that make life worth living. But they’re hard to make and have been superseded by a focus on cash. I’ll never forget Fee Waybill running around the Roxy with his chainsaw humming during the “Rock and Roll Hospital” number, which never made it to a Tubes album, but the experience was just that indelible.

And it’s funny how comedians are testing limits, when way back when George Carlin had to can his act and reinvent it to truly succeed, comedy was not a leader in the days of yore.

I’m waiting, surprise me.

Alaska’s Blockbusters

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