Natural influences shape our choices in many respects. For example, our natural hunger influences us to make choices that will lead to food.
Similarly, in the realm of sex, it's woman's to supply. So men must serve the demands of woman in order to get it. (cf. *pussy*-whipped) Of course, one can rebel against the natural order of *Mother* Nature--as gays and celibates do--but that's a defiance. That's why most men are subordinate to their wives. Also, man is born of woman. That's why most sons are subordinate to their mothers. (cf. "Mama's Boy" and "Daddy's Little Girl")
The overwhelming fact of overbearing mothers and overbearing wives--while certainly *avoidable* given enough male defiance and female wisdom--is a product of natural influences, which even the most rational of men cannot totally avoid.
An artist can never sacrifice his artistic integrity for the sake of social comfort. Now, *you* might sacrifice humor for the sake of "benevolent" (in other words: comfortable, soft, non-threatening) social situations, but that's because humor isn't your art. Music is. Not so for me, buddy.
I can't conceive of ever sacrificing my art for the sake of witless, humorless social situations. Yes, there are consequences to that, but as Sinatra might say, that's life (thaat's laaaaaaaaaaaaaiiiiiiiiiiiife) ... sorry, can't ever say that without the Ray Charlesian chorus coming into my head ...
Again, it comes down to the greater cause that I'm implicitly fighting for in just about all my work. It's the sense of life issue, which I value above all others.
Nicole, if you promise me a "swingin" time, if you catch my drift, then I'm there, and I doubt Andrew's far behind.
Jason, no amount of skewing can result in what goes to your favor in the real Athens, which is, alas, 7,000 miles away.
And are you going to be in Chattanooga this weekend? You must be there, as you well know.