I can’t remember how this link came my way today or if it actually came my way today at all. Could have been yesterday. But somehow this 2005 blog post of a 1977 Lester Bangs column on the death of Elvis ended up in my browser tabs. The column is as strong and opinionated as you would expect from Bangs, and your agreement with his points may come and go. But the tough, lengthy windup is worth it for the final paragraph’s pay-off.
If love truly is going out of fashion forever, which I do not believe, then along with our nurtured indifference to each other will be an even more contemptuous indifference to each others’ objects of reverence. I thought it was Iggy Stooge, you thought it was Joni Mitchell or whoever else seemed to speak for your own private, entirely circumscribed situation’s many pains and few ecstasies. We will continue to fragment in this manner, because solipsism holds all the cards at present; it is a king whose domain engulfs even Elvis’s. But I can guarantee you one thing: we will never again agree on anything as we agreed on Elvis. So I won’t bother saying good-bye to his corpse. I will say good-bye to you.