I have had the house to myself for the past two weeks and as a result my own tastes hold sway (and since the only thing they have to hold sway over is me, there’s been a lot of sway-ness). Much to my chagrin, I have discovered that there are some things that I’m a major sucker for.
By that, I don’t mean guilty pleasures. Melrose Place and Abba (neither one is mine, but they seem common) and all that. Rather, I have discovered that I’m a sucker for certain properties or attributes of food, music, literature, TV/film and as a result I’m willing to consume fair to middling examples in each area that contain such properties.
Concrete examples will make more sense, I think:
1. I am a sucker for synth pop songs featuring full-throated, female British vocalists. Alison Moyet, Kate Bush, Elizabeth Fraser (Cocteau Twins), Annie Lennox, etc. Now there’s nothing wrong with any of these vocalists — all have put out fantastic work. What I’m saying is that I’m a sucker for even their middling work. I will lower my standards because there is something about that particular sound that gets me every time.
2. I am a sucker for jalapeno-flavored snack foods (this is where I would insert a lament for Crunch Taters, but I’m quite sure that ya’ll have already heard it).
3. I am a sucker for sitcoms that have a goofy brother/co-worker/friend (Kramer, Buster, Dwight, etc.). I even watched the first three episodes of “Class” because of the weird, goofy, suicidal red-headed guy. Of course, the rest of it is so bad, I’ve ditched it. But the fact that I was even willing to watch a second episode of it suggests I am a major sucker.
4. I am a sucker for works of speculative fiction that feature damaged, complex main characters who exhibit great courage and grace — but where the fact that they will eventually triumph (although that triumph always comes at a cost) is never really in doubt. I supposed Frodo is the example par excellence here, but I’m talking about works by Lois McMaster Bujold, Tad Williams, Orson Scott Card, Robin Hobb, Steven Brust, etc.
So what are you a sucker for and why?
NOTE: The two tracks by Alison Moyet on the radio blog are not middling efforts, imo. I figured you all would rather hear her best stuff. Lately, she has ditched the synth pop and re-invented herself as a jazz/torch singer.