I should have outgrown my taste for metal a long time ago. I’m in my thirties, considering offspring, and by the standards of my thirteen-year-old Rock Band-obsessed nephew-in-law, am totally un-cool. Yet as my white hairs sprout, I find myself increasingly drawn to more extreme, ridiculously unlistenable — to the ears of most — metal. Like Meshuggah, or anything out of Norway. I’m actually embarrassed. Not because metal isn’t worthy. I just think a woman who loves shopping and otherwise bears no resemblance to the tattooed bikers of the East Bay metal scene should move on to Ben Harper or something.
My proclivities have interfered with my friendships. While my peers want to see Jack Johnson at KFOG KaBoom or dance to Justin Timberlake, I’d rather hear some scruffy dreadlocked dudes in a dive bar. And no, they don’t ever want to come. Don’t get me wrong, I listen to plenty of non-metal. I’ve even started liking some of those sensitive singer-songwriters. There’s just one problem: my metal habit has rubbed off on my husband. When we met his favorite artist was Tom Waits, but now he likes even more extreme metal than I do. I guess there’s always hope for the children.