High Fidelity starts with a brilliant passage of how to humiliate your ex!
What happens when you girlfriend dumps you? You may say that you feel sad, right? But if I ask you to write down on a paper what you would exactly feel,spit out everything that goes in your little messy heart. If a heart gets broken, would it be divided into two parts or more than that? Do those parts communicate with each other regarding how to deal the situation post incident ? How exactly a break up happens ? Can’t we all see when the relation is getting weaker day by day and one day confirmation gets in verbal way, which generally starts with , We need to talk, and mostly ends with it’s over.
Rob Fleming takes us to with him into his heart or brain. We don’t know, just somewhere where he continuously speaks or cries about his girl friends or especially , Laura. Whom he doesn’t list in his top five favorite break-ups. He tells us in the first page of the book itself who are his favorites and why they’re his favorites. We may find a similarity in those cases, an unexpected one or his ex cheating him.Unknowingly, he gets to know that his recent break-up with Laura also comes under that case, hence it becomes one of his favorite. Even though, he doesn’t share with us we feel it. Deep down, Rob likes to be a loser. Who works in a record shop along with two more crazy pop music fans. Two things that are common in them, 1) Stupidity and 2 ) hundreds of own record collections. They genuinely think that who doesn’t own at least 500 record labels they need to get a life.
Rob, being in his mid-thirties hasn’t got the seriousness towards life. Laura says at one point of time, we are like Tom hanks in Big, kid stuck in adult body. That could be the correct reason. Laura is serious towards her. She takes the serious job, lawyer. She plans and keep things in order. Rob,a complete contrarian.What they have in common, Sex. When he gets dumped by Laura, he becomes introspective. He starts thinking about rejection in his life. He starts sorting it out by understanding why he is rejected by his favorite exes. He does his detective search and finds all of them. Speaks to them. Falls in love with them. At the end gets rejected again. After all, he is no stranger to rejection. If you look for a plot in this 244 page memoir-kind-of-list-of-record-labels , a guy who gets rejected by his girl tries to understand the reasons behind by getting connected to his past people and gets the girl back. Simple! But High Fidelity is all about chords and right music record at right time.
While reading the book, I was always waiting for the dialogue part to end. I really wanted to read the monologues of Rob. They are straight out of mind or heart or whatever it is , it directly connected with me. Probably, that’s the USP of High Fidelity. It speaks with you. It can communicate with you.The dialogues convey nothing regarding their hearts, they give you the names of record labels they like or love or they hate. Dialogue part gives us easily 200+ record names. If you are a kid of 70’s you might have listened to these during your college days. You might feel nostalgic too. That’s the purpose of conversations in High Fidelity. Giving a sense of being in that age and being with that period people.
“People worry about kids playing with guns, and teenagers watching violent videos; we are scared that some sort of culture of violence will take them over. Nobody worries about kids listening to thousands – literally thousands – of songs about broken hearts and rejection and pain and misery and loss.” – High Fidelity
Do the above lines chord you anything? Have you ever felt like this? What about like the below one :
“It’s brilliant, being depressed; you can behave as badly as you like.” – High Fidelity
Nick Hornby also explains the power of music through his non-musical words :
“What came first – the music or the misery? Did I listen to the music because I was miserable? Or was I miserable because I listened to the music? Do all those records turn you into a melancholy person?” -High Fidelity
And this one , I love it!
“Sentimental music has this great way of taking you back somewhere at the same time that it takes you forward, so you feel nostagic and hopeful all at the same time.” – High Fidelity
Nick Hornby did magic with this. I know, the book has came out in 1995 but still in 2018 it is still relevant to the world. To the broken hearts. My favorite passage from the book is :
“I guess I should have forgotten about it ages ago, but forgetting isn’t something I’m very good at.” – High Fidelity
Okay, last one :
“What really matters is what you like, not what you are like” – High Fidelity
Umm, what about the passage in page 156.
“Have you ever looked at a picture of yourself when you were a kid? Or pictures of famous people when they were kids? It seems to me that they can either make you happy or sad. There’s a lovely picture of Paul McCartney as a little boy, and the first time I saw it , it made me feel good: all that talent, all that money, all those years of blissed-out domesticity, a rock-solid marriage and lovely kids, and he doesn’t even know it yet.But then there are others – JFK and all the rock deaths and fuck-ups, people who went mad, people who came off the rails,people who murdered, who made themselves or other people miserable in ways too numerous to mention – and you think, stop right there! This is as good as it gets!”
Word Review : Loved.
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