"In the Air Tonight" by Phil Collins is, in my opinion, the greatest song to ever grace its presence upon my ears in the history of mankind. People often ask me what kind of music I listen to, and though I often reply, "Oh, I'm not too particular, just whatever's on the radio," my real answer is, "Anything that isn't "In the Air Tonight" is a screwdriver being rammed repeatedly into my brain as far as I'm concerned. Mozart can go suck ass somewhere else, thank you very much."
I don't like sad songs, and despite what this might sound like, it isn't one. For many years people theorized that the song was about a friend of Mr. Collins' drowning, and some other guy not helping him, but then he revealed in an interview it isn't about anything like that, not even at all, it's just an awesome idea for a song he had once. That does in turn make it a little bit odd he openly avows "If you told me that you were drowning, I would not lend a hand" at one point, but I guess that is why he is a singer / drummer and not a lifeguard.
Anyways, here's a list of things made infinitely cooler by playing "In the Air Tonight" in the background. If I had my way, I'd blast "In the Air Tonight" on Subwoofer 24-7, but I'm afraid the neighbors would complain that the song was too awesome and they unfortunately had to try and get to sleep so they could get up for work tomorrow, even though they'd rather be listening to that wicked drum solo on loop.
Shaving. We literally apply knives to our face and scrape growing follicles out of our skin until we can feel our faces burn for no reason other than, as far as I can tell, to impress the fairer sex. Done at the exact right rhythm and tempo, the opening chords make for a very exciting shaving experience.
Combing one length of hair three or four times.
Watching steam rise from coffee.
Burning things. I've lit a pair of pants on fire before, blue jeans, and I'm not sure if it was just the fumes talking but when the pants bled purple and started bubbling ink, I experienced epiphanies like I never had before. I think I met my spirit animal while on the other side, and if I ever have another experience with the spiritual beyond or whatever they prefer to be called, I am going to make sure Phil Collins himself is present to provide the soundtrack.
Running up or down a staircase.
Being alone in an elevator.
Dramatically closing the elevator door the moment someone you don't like approaches it.
Removing a Band-Aid. For a long time, it's been a fantasy of mine to rip a colored Band-Aid off my forehead, while carefully observing what lies beneath, then stare longingly into my own eyes, then coyly grin at myself as if to say, "It's on." Though I have had my forehead slashed open by the rough edge of a cupboard drawer before it barely even merited a Band-Aid. Plus you have to time the peeling off of said Band-Aid very carefully with that drum solo. I'm not really sure where to go from there. But maybe one day I will be.
Breaking a mirror.
Peeling / chopping things. Phil Collins did the soundtrack to 1999's "Tarzan" and for this reason every time I see a banana I think of him. Man would only ever be caught dead chopping vegetables if he was preparing a romantic dinner or if he was a chef, so I think "In the Air Tonight" is appropriate for either occasion.
Entering forestry. I'm not saying you have to go all the way in, but if I were standing on the edge of a forest and had to size the entire thing up before taking a few measured steps within, I know what song I would play.
Emerging from a pool. Bonus points if you almost drowned that day. That's essentially the message of the song.
Drying your face. Looking sadly at the towel, as well.
Vigils and seances.
Wearing new pants, or being the new face of a town. Whoops, this is actually a life event that would be better accentuated by the Bee Gees' "Stayin' Alive". The second greatest song of all time. A distant second, though. The opening ditty is pretty cool if you're into strutting, jumping off a curb, and breaking open a fire hydrant.
Examining a field from the top of a hill, moments before you know it is about to go down in a blaze of glory. Which is the third best song of all time.
Using a syringe. I seriously can't even begin to comprehend why this song isn't the official anthem of blood banks everywhere. Can you imagine a nurse drawing your own blood from within you, in front of your very own eyes? Again, this syncs up perfectly with the beginning of the song, and if you're off-put by that, running and screaming from the blood bank would work at the moment of the drum solo.
Unintentional biochemical warfare. If I ever learned the government was preparing some sort of secret biochemical weapon designed to turn people into zombies or back into apes I would hope, nay, I would expect that the naive young intern who dropped the vial containing it would do so the moment Phil Collins says "The first time ... the last time...." and would realize his error and stare out the window completely aghast the moment the drum solo kicks in.
Ripping out an IV of morphine and dramatically storming out of your hospital bed in time for a wedding.
Dying. Although this song pumps my 'nads like no other, I do think it is fittingly somber enough too that I want it played at my funeral. A spoken-word rendition of "In the Air Tonight" would suffice as a eulogy. After the drum solo you have my permission to set the coffin alight and ship it into the sea like the Vikings used to do. If there is an afterlife, I hope "In the Air Tonight" plays lightly on the intercom at Walgreen's, but if there isn't one, I will not come back to tell you about it, instead prompting you to question Phil Collins about the meaning of life, a secret that he is clearly hiding.
Hall of Fame