Over the weekend, friends of mine fairly fell all over themselves emailing me news that Robert Plant turned down a $800 million offer to go on tour with Led Zeppelin. I, of course, did not need to be told this “news”, because I am plugged directly into the rock and roll zeitgeist, by which I mean I’ve been lurking in the bushes outside of Robert Plant’s house. (It’s not as exciting as you would imagine, to be honest. Hardly anything happened at all today. David Coverdale came by to clean the pool, but that was it.)
$800 million is a lot of money. I call an amount like that Boat People Money, because you’d do almost anything for it, including blowing boat people.
Me: $800 million? Man, that’s Boat People Money, you know what I’m saying?
McDonald’s Drive Thru Guy: Not really.
Me: You know what else I’d do for that kind of scratch? I’d fist a gorilla. But it’d have to be tranquilized first, because $800 million might be a lot of money, but it doesn’t do you any good in intensive care!
McDonald’s Drive Thru Guy: Sir, you’ve been talking for 30 minutes now, and there’s a long line forming. Can I take your order?
Me: No thanks, I’m not really hungry.
It’s a lot of money, which is why people have a hard time understanding how Robert Plant could turn it down, and in some cases they’re flat-out pissed off. “He owes it to the fans!” they insist. “Think about the fans!”
Imagine yourself as a retiree. You’re living in Boca Raton, Florida, you own doilies, have grandchildren, and drive everywhere in the fast lane even though you’re only going 35 mph. You’ve lived a long, fulfilling life, and your days are happy and long. And then all of a sudden, you get a call from the company you used to work for 45 years ago, and they’re angrily demanding that you get back to work because you “owe it to the customers”. I’m imagining that your response would be somewhere in the “go gargle syphilitic monkey-balls, you subliterate fucktard!” range, and rightfully so. It’s asinine to expect someone to do something just because they were good at it a half century ago.
And the guy is 66, for crying out loud! How much longer are we going to expect that he do something that he last did while he was still popping zits? I picture Robert Plant in 40 years, lying in bed at a nursing home. “Ok, Mr. Plant, I’ve got your insulin. But before I give it to you, sing Communication Breakdown!”
(Funny thing is, Robert Plant in a nursing home would still be getting more action then a bed pole in a home for nymphomaniacs, and before you ask, yes, there is a home for nymphomaniacs. It’s in Australia. And airfare to Australia is simply fucking outrageous. I know. I checked.)
People’s priorities are all fucked up. They get mad at Robert Plant for going on tour with a band that isn’t Led Zeppelin, but Taylor Swift releases an album and no one drops a tactical nuke in her back yard? What the fucking fuck?
The point is, Robert Plant has provided an incalculable amount of enjoyment for millions of people over the course of six decades and he has won the right to do what he wants, so just leave him alone. I say this both as a fan, and as someone who has just noticed from my vantage point in the bushes that apparently Robert Plant has ordered a pizza.