What’s My Damage? Nine Inch Nails – Wish

You’re 12 going on 13. You’re the product of divorce. Live in a town filled with assholes. You might even be the smartest kid in your classroom.

You are fucking angry.

It’s not easy to make sense of it. There’s no solid foundation for the anger. It’s just there. You’re taught about puberty – read books and see pictures. You’re gonna grow hair in funny places. In some cases, your voice will drop an octave, like your balls. Still, there’s this boiling, irrational rage that you can’t control. It’s like an abused pit bull loyal only to you and completely unleashed.

So this is your adolescence. Anger, confusion, loneliness. It ain’t much different, but at that age our heads are so deep in our own holes, it’s not like we take enough time to come up for air and realize everyone else is in the same place – or worse.

We are a universe of shallow, boiling water. Every minute leaves the pool an inch lost.

So you search for something. You find common bonds via media, a show, a song, a book. Me? I watched Beavis and Butthead. Sort of get it. The music is new for a Bronx kid in a school where WuTang is now king and A Tribe Called Quest is the only tape he’s burning in his walkman.

Then this happens:

That anger – the rage – has a voice?

Trent Reznor found me at the exact cosmic moment I needed to be found.

Reznor begat Keenan begat Patton begat Murphy begat Bowie and on and on and on.

An eternity of music.

I swallowed it whole and remained hungry since.

Thank you, Trent.

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