Peer Pressure: Some Things We’re All Supposed To Love, Yet I Never Really Did



Call me unsophisticated if you’d like, but I’ve never been a fan of weird shit from the ocean floor. All my life people have fallen over themselves, talking about how much they love crab legs and shrimp, and other freaky-ass monsters of the deep. Shrimp is horrible, it’s basically bugs. And if I have to use tools to crack open a hard-shell covering… I’m not too far removed from busting skulls and eating brains. Right? I’ve been dragged to expensive seafood buffets before, and it was enough to trigger a week of nightmares. Is that a pot pie with spider legs? Shit!


Especially board games, but I also include “party games” like Pictionary, and crap like that. I’m a very busy man, and don’t have time to enter into artificial competition with assholes and dullards, at a dining room table in Swamp Ass, Pennsyvlania. I never even liked drinking games, even at the height of my debauchery years. I’ll calibrate the speed at which I ingest this case of Busch Ice tall-boys, thank you very much.

Cheech & Chong

These guys were 85% unfunny, 15% mildly amusing. Yet, when I was in high school everybody thought they were the absolute pinnacle of hilarity. I don’t hate ’em, I just don’t like ’em all that much. Comedy is supposed to make you laugh, isn’t it? That’s the root of the problem with Cheech & Chong, I think.

Babies and children

I occasionally enjoy my own kids, but that’s about where it ends. I have trouble seeing the adorableness of every little shit that comes down the pike. Those babies on Facebook? They all look like Lou Grant to me. And the way they mispronounce words, etc.? Get your shit together, toddlers! If you can talk, you can talk right.

Frank Zappa

Oh, I guess he was OK if you’re really into nine-minute “songs” with a dozen time-changes each, and a 45 year old man talk-singing bathroom humor over the top. I’m admittedly not an expert, but have been subjected to more than my fair share of Zappa music. You know, on account of me graduating high school in 1981. And what was the deal with that guy? Did he suffer from severe Attention Deficit Disorder? I always wanted to scream: FOCUS! It’s not necessary to stuff 25 half-baked ideas into each song. Yeah, I know… they were all master musicians, and I just don’t understand. Whatever. I’ll take Billy Squier, any day.

I have more, but I’m all out of time. I’ll do a follow-up post on this subject in the near future. But, in the meantime, please share your own lists with us. Use the comments link.

And don’t forget: Use our Amazon links while doing your holiday shopping. Here’s one, to make it easy on ya. And another, for the good folks in Canada. Use it, even if you’re buying Zappa CDs. Thank you guys!

I’ll see you again soon.


  1. The Doors. I think it was the organ. Leave the organ to Lawrence Welk and church. And Jim Morrison’s spoken word parts of songs were just plain stupid.

    • johnthebasket says

      Of course this is all XTC vs Adam Ant stuff, but not liking the Doors because of the golden fingers of Ray Manzarek (as opposed to the drug-addled, ego-fed, lost-boy persona of Jim Morrison) must be rare. Not wrong, just rare.

      And how about Jimmy Smith, Booker T. Jones, Billy Preston and Ian McLagan? Of those, only Preston played for Lawrence Welk, and that was only to keep the band together toward the end.

      However, as a former fan of the Go-Gos, I am reluctant to get heavy with other folks’ musical choices. I live in an all-glass house.


  2. My ex used to say all Zappa fans were assholes. I wasn’t a fan, I just liked a few, thought a few were eh.
    I agree with Joe T. the Doors were tiresome quickly.

  3. johnthebasket says

    Some things are genuinely universal — equally appealing or desirable at all times and in all places. Actually, about ten things are universal. The other billion foods, people, concepts, beliefs and activities are functions of who you are and when you were born. Cheech and Chong were more relevant (thus funnier) in 1971 than in 1976 because of the change in the relative undergroundness of weed; Zappa would be equally impenetrable to the Phoenicians and the Jetsons.

    I happen to strongly like two of the five things Jeff posted, strongly dislike two, and have mixed feelings about one, but I’m a dozen years older and twenty-five hundred miles wester than Jeff. So it goes.


    • John, if you keep dropping hints about yourself , like you did above, I might figure you out. Stop it NOW!! I like picturing you as the curmudgeon in the basement.

      • johnthebasket says

        I’m a child of the 60s. I always move toward the light. Fuck basements. I might have to plead nolo contendere to the rest, though.


  4. At the top of my list is AC/DC. Even today, you can’t turn on any rock station (classic or modern) without hearing this garbage. They have one song that I like and that’s only because I am a Marshall fan.

  5. I agree with all of them except seafood, I love me some shrimp and lobster. And scallops! Clams and oysters gross me out though. Looks like someone hocked a loogie in a seashell.

  6. Jazzbone Swirly says

    I better cancel the order for that Cheech and Chong seafood game I was planning on getting Jeff for Xmas.

  7. I can only eat seafood (and I’m just talking a piece of flounder at best) if it’s in a restaurant and fried. Bring that shit home and cook it and I’ll just have a piece of bread for dinner.

    Never really liked Led Zepplin.

    Babies and children – *I’LL* look at them if I feel the need. But anyone thrusting a box of photos at me and expect me to oooh and aaah is getting a huge letdown. I’ll turn on my heel and walk away fast.

  8. Swami Bologna says

    I’m with ya 100% re: Zappa. Unfunny novelty songs are not improved by being played by virtuoso musicians, sorry.

  9. I like seafood, board games and children. I don’t know any Zappa music.

    • After a brief YouTube search, I’m pretty sure I’m not down with Frank.

      • Joes Garage by Zappa was pretty good.

        Seafood is bait.

        Never a big fan of the Beatles. I can acknowledge and appreciate what they did but just wasn’t for me.

  10. We’re supposed to love sports in general and football in particular. I never have.

  11. Taylor Swift

  12. Never saw “Gone With The Wind” and I have a pretty good inkling I never will.

  13. I agee. Board games ehhh. Seafood is gross. Zappa don’t know. Kids, mine is super cute. What was the other thing? Avocados? They are ok.

  14. Mike the ripper says

    Janis Joplin and John Fogerty’s voices are like fingernails on a chalk board for me….

  15. Covering your house and lawn and trees in lights because it’s Christmas.

    a. It is tacky
    b. Nothing better to do with your time?
    c. So damn tacky.

  16. Monty Python. Like C&C, they had their moments, but not end-all-be-all that too many “comedy connoisseurs” think of them. Am I alone on this one?

  17. Lew in Bama says

    I love me some seafood, board games can be fun, babies are cute.
    Things I don’t like that most everybody else does:
    baseball (or basketball or soccer)
    sausage (or any meat in a tube)
    gravy (this is a sin in the south, but I just don’t care for it)
    going to the movies (would rather be comfy at my house with the DVD)

    • Lew, I don’t like gravy either. If I put 1/2 teaspoon on my meat it’s a lot. And the well in the mashed potatoes just gives me a full body shiver.

  18. cross lanes curmudgeon says

    Love the Doors and and all seafood except sushi. Like Zappa and Cheech & Chong. Don’t mind other peoples’ kids. I agree with Bill about Taylor Swift and add for your consideration Miley Cyrus and 24-7 Christmas music radio stations.

  19. Totally on board with the drinking-games aversion. Never could figure out why people had to invent ways to get shit-faced as fast as humanly possible. I always tried to prolong it, but maybe I’ve been missing something. Also never did get the big draw of Zappa or allegedly cute babies (really, are they????).

  20. I’m glad someone else finally called seafood out for what it is … Ocean Bugs. I always say lobster is the cockroach of the sea. Blech.

  21. I think children are like farts: other people’s are objectionable, but your own are something special.

  22. I do like fish and shellfish. I don’t care for expensive, flavorless lobster; for that kind of money I could have a nice TASTY steak. Crab is pretty useless to me also. Sushi is expensive, but it’s good and therefore worth having now and then.

    Don’t get me started on bananas.

    • Oh WTF, bananas. I haven’t eaten a banana since I was old enough to force my opinion. We, as a planet, had an opportunity to make bananas extinct a few years ago, but we foolishly fucked it up and stopped that from happening.

      Give me some tuna sashimi and a game of Risk and I’m a happy camper.

      • What time should I be over and what kind of beer would you like me to bring? I call yellow!

      • The Qweezy Mark says

        Bananas. Those sugar sticks can go fuck themselves. There are a hundred other foods that have plenty of potassium, too.

  23. I’ll give you a cow, a pig, a chicken, and a shrimp, and you can tell me how hard each one is to prepare to eat.

    Zappa pales compared to Dylan. Dylan has sucked since the 70’s, yet he can literally hack up phlegm on an album and get “record of the year”.

    And Cards Against Humanity is a great game.

    • I’m not really a board game person but I was introduced to Cards Against Humanity last weekend. With the right group of people, it is a great game.

  24. Football.


    West Coast IPA. Did someone spill pine-sol in that dirty old vat of fermented grapefruit juice?

  25. Morrissey and any band in which he is connected bite the big one. He is the most monotone singer I have ever heard. Whine whine whine. Top to bottom I hate this guy. Jim Morrison was a shitty poet and Manzarek sounded like a first year Suzuki student. Blachhhh. Zappa’s cover of Hitchin Post was pretty good but that was because it sounded so much like the original. Best thing he ever did was name his kids.
    Love me some seafood but admit crabs are too much trouble to crack.
    Babies and farts analogy is priceless.

  26. Jazzbone Swirly says

    I like all jazz

    • johnthebasket says

      Four years ago, I bought what will probably be Mose Allison’s last studio album, recorded when he was 82. I’ve been a fan since the 70s, and saw him live from about 20 feet away in a dinner theater in Seattle in about 1979. There are hundreds or thousands of types of jazz, but Mose has always been his own category. I have never heard of him being anything but a gentleman, so I’ve never confused him with Jim Morrison.


    • Uncle_Wedgie says

      “Jazz is not dead it just smells funny” – Frank Zappa

  27. Hip hop music. All of it. Especially Eminem.

    Sports . If they came out and said there will be no more football or basketball games of any type. Professional or college, my life would carry on as normal

    • Not that any of us care, but sales of BATVs would plummet.

    • Baseball in particular is a colossal waste of time. 162 games times 5 hours each – only if you paid me. But whenever we meet a new couple, the guy’s inevitably a sports fanatic, and I have to pretend to be into it.

      • I’ve gone to two baseball games this year, and I actually enjoyed the experience. I don’t follow the game or watch it on TV or know any of the players, but it’s a fun day out with friends. And I hadn’t been to a game since 1973, so it was a blast from the past as well.

        • Sitting in the sun drinking beer and eating hotdogs is always going to be fun. Rounders, the English name for baseball, has been played by English schoolgirls for a very very long time. Lots of sitting down, or standing around doing nothing but talking to whoever is the field with you – it’s the perfect game for schoolgirls.

          • The chewing tobacco makes it manly.

            • johnthebasket says

              And the repeated crotchal adjustments.

              • You’ve not known many English schoolgirls, have you?

                • There’s too much f’n around in football. Constant stopping of the clock, watching replays for scuteny , arrogant bastards dancing in the end zone when the score. You can keep that shit. I wish at work when I fix a car I could dance a little jig then sit down on a bench and breath oxygen through a tube

                  • There are probably no rules against you dancing a little jig at work after a successful repair job but I bet the boss would frown on you sucking oxygen from the acetylene torch set.

                    • Our torch rig is empty but after I fixed the misfire on a Jetta I sat down and huffed a little gas. The ol tried and true.

  28. johnthebasket says

    “Goddamned if ever day ain’t a holiday and ever meal ain’t a banquet. . .”

  29. Jeff,
    I couldn’t find your master chef junior post bit this is about that. If you hate the kids then their parents are even bigger assholes. I’m watching the finale right now and the nerds’ mom is like a pageant mom. Blurgh.

  30. Jazzbone Swirly says

    I wonder who would win in a fist-fight between Joni Mitchell and Yoko Ono. Two scenarios: 1) if the fight were to occur in 1970, and 2) if the fight were to happen today. Discuss.