We’ve all been there.
You pull up to a stoplight on a picturesque day in late spring, the weather warm enough to make being inside feel like a crime against nature, yet cool enough to prevent the crankiness that often accompanies the suffocating humidity of a Lowcountry summer.
You roll down the windows and reach for the knob of your stereo when you hear the stereo of the car behind you blaring some interminable dross at decibel levels. The sound is guaranteed to deafen the unfortunate souls trapped inside and annoy anyone within earshot — in this case, you.
You feel the steady thud of the bass in your chest as it vibrates the car’s rust-eaten doors and panels like they were made of sheet metal, which they just might be.
You slowly roll up your windows, glaring through your sunglasses at the self-indulgent and utterly oblivious half-wit in the rearview mirror.
It is only after being subjected to this auditory assault for a few moments that you realize the worst part about all of this — the music.
It’s an Akon song from the summer of 2008 or some faddish rap song featuring instructions to an idiotic dance or one of the 15,000 country songs about small towns, trucks and beer.
It’s never The Beatles or The Kinks or The Shins. Nope. It’s always horrible.
Your anger slowly morphs into incredulity.
“How could this guy possibly be so proud of having such poor taste?” You say to yourself over the shrill and heavily autotuned Ke$ha song blaring shamelessly from the nearby car stereo.
Everyone knows that if you’re listening to something embarrassing in your car — and we all do it — you roll up your windows as tightly as you would if driving past a dead skunk.
There is something to be said for “to each his own” but this is not merely a matter of personal choice.
This is noise pollution, the not-so-silent killer. OK, killer might be a bit strong, but it’s pretty darn annoying.
Besides, what’s this guy’s endgame?
Is he hoping that, as he creeps along, attractive women will hear the music and hurl themselves at his moving vehicle, knowing as we do how irresistible women find men so well-versed with Ludacris’s song catalog?
Not going to happen, bro.
With prime windows-down weather upon us, this week’s playlist features eight songs you can be proud to have blaring from your car stereo.
Sometimes you have to fight fire with fire but do us all a favor: Don’t advertise your bad taste.