Teenage angst has paid off well, though I'm not so bored and not that old yet. Life's gotten more interesting, even as it's settled into some kind of conventional routine.
I remember hearing on the radio about Kurt Cobain but I was eleven and didn't pay much attention but when Layne Staley died, it wasn't unexpected but still heartbreaking and me and my fellow slackers mourned together on a rainy Tuesday in the basement of Tri-C.
Every time someone talks about "The Voice of a Generation" I'm wary because not every person born after 1970 is an angsty suburban cracker and we tend to project our likes on the rest of the world just like our boomer overlords. My younger cousins don't know who Kurt Cobain is, and because people on the Internet don't know how to read, the first search on Youtube comes up as "Smells Like Team Spirit" which sounds like a hilarious trainwreck of a customer service program.
I know that the cryptic lyrics and perfect squalls of guitar spoke to my lonely soul who'd just discovered the guitar and music at the same time, tuning my dad's instrument down to D and a half step to play like Jerry Cantrell.
Who needed boy bands and love songs when there was cathartic angst to wallow in?
I learned how to play that song from a guy who went to rehab, and did the painting below my first year as an art student, and it hung in every dorm room and apartment I lived in until I moved home in '06 and it sat in a portfolio stuffed with old projects and band posters I forgot I owned. I see more hipster kids with flannel shirts than usual and know that the inevitable revival will eventually happen.