If we’re not gonna make it, it’s gotta be you that gets out, cause I’m not capable. I’m fucking Irish, I’ll deal with something being wrong for the rest of my life.
—William Monahan (The Departed)
—William Monahan (The Departed)
If your roommate asks you what you think of the other roommate’s new boyfriend, don’t shrug and say “Meh, a little annoying. And possibly homophobic,” because he could be within earshot and things could get awkward.
I had to go to a meeting today with all of the directors and managers from my department across Canada. Mostly just to sit and look pretty, but also to take a lot of notes and make sure everything was running smoothly, everything stayed on schedule, no one forgot how to read, etc. There’s been a lot of recent staffing changes among the management team so the beginning of the meeting included a little icebreaker game: Desert Island.
The Desert Island game is not really a game so much as it is an opportunity to see who will always be sensible, even in make believe, and who likes to have a little fun. So we all went around the room telling each other the ONE thing that we would want with us if we were stranded on a deserted island. A few people were practical and said things like a satellite phone or sunscreen. The overwhelming choice however, was an iPad, which of course to me seems ridiculous. Touchscreen + sand + sweat? Bleh.
And then it’s my turn. Knowing it’s a work thing and I’m supposed to be professional, but also knowing that I don’t care, I almost said vodka (it’s dual purpose - fights infection AND boredom) but then I went with my gut (and cheated) and said: a very large notebook and a pen, which of course I find interesting: that the 23 year old chooses an almost archaic form of entertainment and all of the middle-aged executives are all I <3 technology, me push buttons! (A lot of them actually said they wanted it to look through pictures. That’s what your memory is for, duh).
Then we were put into groups and we had to pick whose item we would trade for something “better”. Basically, whose choice was the most useless. And good old spiritual dinosaur with her pen and paper over here got VOTED OFF THE ISLAND. Well, they clearly are not imaginative enough to see the value of some ink and loose leaf. I could write myself bedtime stories, draw pictures, play games, make paper airplanes, origami, use the pen to stab small animals… the possibilities are endless. And most importantly I would document our time on the island, then once we were rescued I could publish a bestseller about our harrowing journey, get a movie deal, chat with Barbara Walters and then retreat to mountains with my small fortune. Completely brilliant plan.
SIGH, I really do have a too much of an imagination. One that always seems to get the best of me. I’m always reading too far into things and seeing stuff that isn’t there. Mostly bugs. I’ve “seen” a lot of mysterious, ghostly bugs.
P.S. The artwork in this thing is crazy. Partly because I’m unsure how any of it relates to the subject matter of the song, but I’m digging it nonetheless.
P.P.S. I want to start saying that I’m “digging” things more.
I have to decide on job-y, adult-y things now and it’s a little overwhelming.
Happy birthday, also.
I know you’re probably thinking, hoping even, that that was the last of what I had to say to you. It could be, should be, but of course it’s not.
Because this is what I do.
I sit alone and count up all the words I could have spoken but never did.
I figure out how all the feelings I ever had or could have would sound out loud.
And all the occasions I’ll have to hear them that will never come.
When I was a kid, around four or five, my sister and I used to listen to cassette tapes to fall asleep. We had Raffi, Sharon, Lois & Bram, some Celine Dion, some Michael Jackson, the Lion King soundtrack, a few books on tape… you know, a healthy mix.
I have a very vivid memory of listening to one of the more “educational” tapes, no idea on the official artist, but I remember that it included a song to teach kids about space. There was this verse about the sun, something about it giving off light and then, word for word: “without the sun we would only live at night.” I can still hear that creepy man’s breathy voice bleeding through the speakers on my pink and green boombox.
We would only live at night: completely scarring to a four year old. My pre-elementary school self, for some reason, took that to mean that we would all die as soon as the sun went away, which this tape led me to believe was a significant possibility, so I got pretty into wishing the sun would stay around. Looking back now I realize what they meant was that without a sun, we would all live in darkness and it wasn’t meant to send my imagination spinning with images of global extinction and start an obsession with that big bright ball in the sky.
The funny thing is that, while I misinterpreted the song, I was still way more accurate on Earth’s dependency on our closest star than those so-called musical educators… “Oh the sun might go away, but that’s cool, we’ll just chill in the dark, we got fire, we’ll be alright.” What a thing to teach children. Uhhh nope, without the sun we would never have been here in the first place and you never could have made your stupid, inaccurate tape that terrified four year old me and turned me into a sun worshiper.
Although, I suppose I’m alright with loving the sun, just slightly pissed about how I got there.
TL;DR Worship the sun & pray to Joe Pesci.
Not important to teach children how to read… much more important to teach children to question what they read.
This stuck in my mind when I was thinking about this book… This very white, straight, male view of rock history, whereby a 1967 Beach Boys album that doesn’t actually exist (it’s called Smile. Brian Wilson went nuts while making it) is seen as a more classic album than anything you’ve bought, laughed at, danced to, fallen in love with this week. Especially if you happen to be a girl and suspect that Beach Boys outtakes aren’t very sexy, when BEING SEXY IS POP MUSIC’S JOB. Where not liking Neil Young is seen as evidence of not being clever enough to ‘get it’.
If we’re not careful we’ll turn everything previously thrilling, irresponsible and gloriously, stupidly shaggable about pop into one enormous library of alphabetised lists of private ponderings on the meaning contained within Bob Dylan’s bum note at the beginning of a thirty-fourth bootleg version of ‘Positively 4th Street’. Music is a social thing, based almost entirely around dancing, copping-off, drugs that make you love each other, romance and the belief that if you just shake uncontrollably to this beautiful noise in a roomful of beautiful people right now, then your lousy job/debt problems/marriage/friendships/life will simply cease to be. Until the next beautiful noise begins, or the dream ends. This is what pop does for us.
Basically what I was trying to say with my last post. Of course I would put a lot of effort into writing something and then find someone who said it better. Such is life.