I am sitting alone in my living room catching up on the day while I await the arrival of the KP Spouse so we can dine. I am indulging in a favorite alone pleasure: Virgin Radio UK on the spiffy music server (it’s too pop-y for the KP Spouse).
Franz Ferdinand’s “Do You Want To” has just come on. I love love love Franz Ferdinand. I have both of their CDs, and I have played them to death; I can play this song in my head and sing it in its entirety, and can play it any time I want on the home stereo, my computer, or my iPod.
So here’s the question: why does the unexpected pleasure of hearing it on the radio produce such a frisson of pleasure? Why is the experience of hearing it in this context so different, and so pleasurable? It’s not like it’s a scarce good; I own it, can play it whenever I want, as much as I want.
I find the same thing with DVDs I own, particularly with episodes of Monty Python’s Flying Circus and with Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Even though I own them, whenever I come across them on TV I watch them, and am excited to find them.
Ooooh, now Virgin Radio UK is playing Human League! How can the KP Spouse not like this? Oooh, now they’re playing Snow Patrol “Chasing Cars”! I was just listening to this on the way home! So why am I so excited that they’re playing it?