Roger Waters, part of the brains behind Pink Floyd, was at the ballpark on Friday night to toss out the ceremonial first pitch. An Englishman, Waters admittedly doesn't know much about baseball, and certainly watching the Phillies play on Friday night probably didn't help much.
Nonetheless, Waters is in town and playing a couple of dates at the Wachovia Center sans Pink Floyd, so as a little tribute to a true Pink Floyd fan, Ben Miller, we offer the Dark Side of the Rainbow:
There was a time during our post-collegiate days where my sister and I attended a party in which one of the other attendees put Pink Floyd’s The Wall in the CD player (these were the days before the proliferation of mp3 files) and proceeded to tell us about how Roger Waters and Syd Barrett were not on performance-enhancing substances when composing the songs that were presented on the album. The fact that my sister and I didn’t really care about Pink Floyd and what they did to prepare for composing music nor that the guy who had cornered us had not presented a well-thought out argument really mattered.
What mattered, I suppose, is that some random guy at a party (who we suspect was on some type of “performance-enhancing drugs” at the time of his presentation) thought it was important enough to defend the notion that Pink Floyd was clean when writing The Wall in very much the same way people acted when andro was found in Mark McGwire’s locker during his assault on the home run records in 1998. Or the same way some people take up Barry Bonds’ case even though there is compelling proof that he allegedly used performance-enhancing drugs with the notion that, “well, they weren’t illegal when he was using them.”
As if that makes it better.
The point is we want our heroes to be “clean” as well as articulate, thoughtful and model citizens when in reality all they are is human. I don’t know if the members of Pink Floyd ever used drugs, and I guess I don’t really care, either. Drugs, as William S. Burroughs once said, are an inevitable part of life. And, as the late comedian Bill Hicks noted, if a person is so adamantly opposed to drug use, he needs to throw away all of his music, movies, quit his job and should stop watching sports.