Jan 07

On the subjective v. the ontological in the musical experience, and whether coffee can be injected into the human ass

by in Drawing & Writing

Back in our sort of crappy hostel with a million-dollar view, a hostel conversation was well under way. A Dutch guy and his girlfriend had befriended an English guy. The English guy played in a band. The Dutch guy was intrigued. “Do you think it is possible that there is an objective standard for being able to play music? Like an IQ test?”

No, the Englishman said. Music is just so diverse, there are so many instruments. There’s the composition, the playing, the aural aspect, the time.

“But do you think,” the Dutchman continued, “there’s an objective standard for music? That some music is ‘bad’ music and some music is ‘good’?”

No, the Englishman said. How can Tibetan monks be compared with Western music, or Arabic music, or African music?

But maybe within each culture, the Dutchman argued, an objective standard could be found.

No, the Englishman said. There are things we are familiar with, certain rhythms we like, mostly because we’ve heard them so often. But anyway those rhythms change over time. How to describe Radiohead, for example, which shifts in and out of musical time.

But scientists have studied rhythm on infants, the Dutchman countered, before they’re socialized to certain musical preferences. And first of all they do like rhythm, and second of all, they respond to specific rhythms more than others.

The musician frowned.


He’d only lost the battle, though, and maybe not the war. When the Dutch girl mentioned some injectable antibiotics she was taking, the Englishman pounced. “Injectable? But why not just, like, swallow it? I mean, I could inject coffee if I wanted to, but.”

“You can’t inject coffee,” the Dutchman said. “It’ll kill you.”

“I actually know someone who did that,” the Englishman laughed. “My sister’s friend. He got all weird for a bit and started injecting coffee. In the morning.”

When everyone looked at him incredulously he added, “I swear!”

A few clarifications resolved things. The guy had injected coffee into his butt cheek, not his arm, the Englishman said. The Dutchman nodded. Had he injected it into his arm, he would’ve died. “It has to be a salt solution. It has to have salt in it to be injected in the veins.”

His girlfriend said, “But heroin doesn’t have salt in it, does it?”

He frowned. “Yeah, but…”


Checkmate + betrayal.

But still, I’d like to know. Is coffee injectable? Shanny? Any other people of medicine? This might seem trivial, but the implications are worldwide. If a woman can breastfeed at Starbucks, a guy should be allowed to drop trou for a butt-cheek Frappucino.


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2 Responses to “On the subjective v. the ontological in the musical experience, and whether coffee can be injected into the human ass”

  1. From Roxy:

    Well, Janis Joplin used to shoot up with Jack Daniels. So… there’s that.

    Posted on January 8, 2012 at 03:49 #
  2. From Shan:

    Coffee? No idea… This is HILARIOUS though. However, I think he was incorrect in that all injections have to be salt based. What about IV fluids? Antibiotics??

    Posted on January 10, 2012 at 21:15 #