Sunday, February 11, 2007

Anything But Down

You ever hear a song that just personifies your relationship with somebody so much you just want to show up at the artist’s door and demand royalties from that song, so obviously taken from a page in your journal?

Or thrown a shoe at your stereo because the song that started playing reminded you of your dead grandmother at the very moment you were staring at her photo in the quiet solitude of your new and improved, clutter free bedroom, missing her desperately and crying your eyes out on a Sunday when, had she been alive, you’d be eating stew at her house?

No? Just me, then?

It just occurred to me how every moment of my life is connected to a song…and vice versa…perhaps it’s why I love the movie High Fidelity so much (besides of course that JC is in it)…music is, like, EVERYTHING to me. And no matter how old I get, whenever I hear The Four Tops’ “Rock Steady” the faint smell of ginger tea will waft near me and I’ll be instantly transported to 68 Patchen Avenue that summer I got back from Camp Sebago and had decided to give up dancing for good.

Whenever I hear “Rhinestone Cowboy,” I’ll remember how Celia and I, in the middle of a card game in our freshman dorm room, laughed hysterically at the fact that she knew the lyrics to EVERY FUCKING SONG ON THE PLANET…even “Rhinestone Cowboy”

If Prince’s “Adore” comes on, I’ll remember that my ex and I had chosen that as the song for our first dance to a wedding that never happened…and how I really fucked up that relationship- I really should’ve never stayed with him and I knew it…what the fuck was I thinking?

Heat’s “Always and Forever” brings me back to St. John the Baptist JHS…7th grade…me working concessions at the 8th grade prom and crushing on Ebel Something-or-other; some random 8th grader that made me swoon…

“Jump Around” by House of Pain takes me to the basement of the Kappi Psi house, freshman year; drunk and out of control in a skirt and combat boots…the jumping around threatening to release the twins at any moment…

Ms. DiFranco’s “Origami” is credited with being the song that finally put the nail in the coffin to my marriage…the lyrics- I know men are delicate, origami creatures/who need women to unfold them/hold them when they cry/but I am tired of being your savior/and I am tired of telling you why- sort of slapped me in the face and said, “Hey! Give it up! This is not working! He’s much more trouble than he’s worth!!”

There are a slew that will always remind me of all 11 of my significant others, the kind of love and anti-love songs that you play over and over again right after a break up. Some to curse them out (so fuck you/and your untouchable face/and fuck you/for existing in the first place), some to beg them to come back (tengo rezones/para no quererte olvidar/porque el trocito de felicidad/fuiste tu quien me lo dio a probar), some to help you get the tears out (it was the sweetness of your skin/it was the hope of all we might have been/that filled me with the hope to wish/impossible things), and some that just, FINALLY, help you move on (So maybe I'll be here/Maybe I'll see you around/That's the way it goes/Almost doesn't count).

And then there’s the song whose lyrics remind you of you, that “other” you that not even your closest friends and family members have seen…the you that sometimes curls up into a corner of her apartment for no reason and just hides from the world…the you that, “never really laughs” when you laugh, but “always really cries” when you cry…the you that just can’t be happy no matter what, and that is afraid of death like no one else in this world but sometimes thinks the rest is just what she needs. That you that is the total opposite of how everybody remembers you, the one that’s a downer, self-deprecating and self-destructive:

I light your cigarettes
I bring you apples from the vine
How quickly you forget
I run the bath and pour the wine
I bring you everything that floats into your mind

But you don't bring me anything but down
You don't bring me anything but down
You don't bring me anything but down
When you come 'round

You are a raging sea
I pull myself out everyday
I plea insanity
Cause I can't leave but I can't stay
You say, won't you come find me and yes is what I say

You don't bring me anything but down
You don't bring me anything but down
Everything is crashing to the ground

Maybe I'm not your perfect kind
Maybe I'm not what you had in mind
Maybe we're just killing time

You with your silky words
And your eyes of green and blue
You with your steel beliefs
That don't match anything you do
It was so much easier before you became you

You don't bring me anything but down
You don't bring me anything but down
Everything just crashes to the ground
When you come around
When you come around

No more playing seek and hide
No more long and wasted nights
Can't you make it easy on yourself

I know you wish you were strong
You wish you were never wrong
Well, I got some wishes of my own

Damn you, Sheryl, and your fucking words of wisdom. I'll be expecting that royalty check from you by the end of this month...

* Cure song away from total depression*
if we let our love
off of its leash
do you fear, like i fear
how fierce it would be?