Okay, maybe it's just me. But let me explain. U2, you might have heard of them, a little band from Dublin that made it to the big time. And stayed, and stayed, and reached insanely enormously famous proportions. We may scoff now at Bono and his ubiquitous sunglasses, but it means that wherever you are in the world, you can turn on the radio and there's a good chance that you'll hear something that's yours, more than it's anyone else's in that place where you are that's not Dublin.
I was never a big U2 fan in my teenage years - for me, their big album was Achtung Baby, and every song on it connects me to memories of college discos, boyfriends, summer in Dun Laoghaire. But now when I hear earlier hits like "Where the Streets Have No Name" or "I Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For", they have retrospective power over me.
There I am, 30-something-ly driving to nursery school to pick up my three-year-old in suburban America, and the twangly chords sound unexpectedly - but not surprisingly - from whatever classic rock radio station I happen to have tuned in to. I have to smile. I have to remember all that I am and everywhere I've come from and teenage mornings at school when other girls were swooning over one or other member of the band - because U2 belongs to us, the Irish public, the Dubliners, the south-county-Dublin-ers; and Edge's guitar riffs (am I allowed say riffs?) and Bono's unsmooth tones and the huge sounds of those songs - they proclaim everything for me that Bono never even knew he was saying back when he wrote them in his much-less-famous early days.
When U2 comes on in the supermarket, I tell the kids to listen to their heritage. It's right there, all over the world.
Thanks, Bono, Edge, Larry, Adam. You did a good thing.