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10:16 p.m. - 2006-02-13
A Guest in My Own Home?
Since I've been thinking about music a lot for the past few days, due to the veritable smorgasboard of same I have received over the last week from these dudes, I realized something. I made a bunch of ya'll write about a musical topic, and I never did my own!

I do have some other things on my mind, but they haven't quite jelled into actual entries yet, so I figured, something slightly topical might be a nice jump-start to get my brain to focus. And, since I hate rules, even my own, it might be more than three songs. Actually, knowing will be more like ten.

Song #1: "Mamma Mia" - Abba

One of my good friends in college was a guy named Keith. He was funny as hell, stuttered but still recited at least half of every movie he saw, and shared my passion for late-night, stoned-out-of-the-gourd, video game sessions. Most particularly, Millipede. At least a good three nights a week during my senior year in college, we would hang out. We would smoke some bowl. And we would play Millipede and listen to music. One of the albums that we listened to over and over was the soundtrack to The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert. "Mamma Mia" was on this soundtrack. Somehow, in our warped heads, this became "our" song.

Keith and I were never romantically involved. We never even had any no-strings-college-fuck-buddy-sex (come to think of it, I don't know that I ever really had any of that.) And he's not gay, either.

I just remember we'd be playing the game, making one of our many bets involving such things as the loser going to fetch the winner a soda and a candy bar, and this song would play, and we'd sing along and act like dorks.

Other albums heavily in the rotation were: Tori Amos - "Little Earthquakes"; REM - "Eponymous"; Oasis - "(What's the Story) Morning Glory"; and Portishead - "Dummy". I can still feel the cheap-ass carpet in my apartment and remember my cat's habit of stealing lighters and hiding them under the sofa.

Song #2: "Breakfast at Tiffany's" - Deep Blue Something

This is also a college song. I believe it was Keith, JP (there's a whole horrible story for another day) and myself road-tripping to yet another stupid-ass speech tournament. At the time, there was this chick on the team named Tiffany.

That girl was straight-up crazy. Complete drama queen. Went from normal dumb-ass chick to goth bondage princess in about a week.

So we changed the lyrics. They were not even nice. But it was still funny.

Song #3: "Barely Breathing" - Duncan Sheik

I hate this fucking song. It annoys the living shit out of me. And when I was working at a REALLY BORING retail job, they played it on the radio at least 97 times a day, every day, for months. Now, even if I just hear the beginning notes, I am transported back there...and remembering the completely irritating assistant manager whose career goal was to work at Dillard's and who would NOT let us change the station to something that didn't suck.

Song #4: "Falling Star" - Karla Bonoff

This also reminds me of JP. A friend made a mix tape for me that had this song on it. The song is depressing, to say the least.

JP is an ex who really wasn't. It was an on-again, off-again flirtation. I, of course, wanted it to be way more than that. I fell really, really hard for this boy. He was brilliant and cute and funny and we could talk for days...and the few times we did fool around, I believe a good time was had by all. (I don't think he was faking comments like "you have no idea how weak in the knees that makes me.") He was a freshman in college when I was a senior. At this point, a three-year age difference isn't that significant. But then? It is a yawning chasm.

The attraction was definitely mutual...and not just by my observation. However, I don't think he was prepared to deal with how intense it was, and I was not prepared for the rejection...especially not when those he appeared to hook up with and call "his girlfriend" were mostly of the petite, cute blonde with big tits variety. (And this is after he spent hours telling me he didn't have a "type." And flirting his ass off with me.) Later, I also found out that, when things were falling apart, he was fucking one of my friends....and this was a friend who knew how I felt about him and how much the whole thing was killing me. Yeah, she had her own shit going on emotionally (bad divorce), but I'm sorry. If you want some eraser dick, you go out and pick up someone in a bar. You don't go doing someone that you know is causing your friend to die a little inside.

Anyway, after I finally had "the talk" with him, and whatever friendship we had pretty much bit the dust, I listened to this song a lot.

Now I know that love can leave a scar
Come pick me up
I'm going down
Like a falling star

Song #5: "Drive" - Incubus

Let me first explain that I'm not necessarily a fan of this song. However, one afternoon at one of my many legal jobs, the bosses were gone, and we were listening to the radio. The station was having one of those "write down the title and artist, be the 9th caller, and win $10 per song" things. Dutifully, I complied. This was the one song out of 25 that I didn't know immediately and had to ask a co-worker the title and artist. By some miracle, I was actually the 9th caller, and I won $250. Which, I might add, came in very handy at the time, since this particular job didn't believe in paying an actual living wage, and I was driving a piece of shit car that needed some sort of repair once an hour. (It was a 9 year old Chevy Cavalier with almost 150K miles on it. It got to the point where I would take it in and ask the mechanic how much it would cost to fix whatever noise it was making...and if it was more than $50, I would ask what would happen if I didn't fix it. Usually, the answer was, "Well, it'll keep making the noise." My response was something along the lines of "then fuck fixing it.")

Song #6: "I'll Fly With You" - Gigi d'Agostino

About two years after I broke up with GEB (and about a year after the last time I had heard from him), he calls me out of the blue. By that point, I actually was glad to hear from him...or at least I thought so. The conversation started with some "hi, how are you" shit, and then I asked him what he was doing later. He said he was going out. I asked where, since during the entire time we dated, he never went anywhere without me...and actually, that was one of the things that led to the demise of our relationship. I was tired of being his one-woman entertainment committee. So I of course was all, "where are you going?" He responded with the name of a local gay bar. I then inquired as to why he was going there and got the "well...I'm gay" answer.

I should state at this point, I am far from homophobic. I mean, clearly, I knew that the bar in question WAS a gay bar, and had been there more than once. I don't think it's wrong, it doesn't gross me out, none of that. However, when you are basically told that someone YOU COULD HAVE MARRIED is now kind of freaks you the fuck out.

I think I stayed drunk for about three days after that.

Once I got over the shock, though, and he repeatedly assured me that I did NOT "turn him gay", we went back to being friends (which we had been for quite some time before we ever dated.) I went out clubbing with him and his new boyfriends and/or friends. This particular song was in heavy rotation on the dance floor during this time period.

I also should state, for the record, that the only time the boy ever told me I was pretty was after he was gay.

Song #7: "Wave of Mutilation" - The Pixies

Senior year in high school. I am the oldest child, and of course, got the brunt of the parental freaking out and worry. It was February of 1992. I had been on one college visit...with my mom. I hadn't applied to a whole lot of schools, because I didn't think it would be possible for me to actually go (my dad was being a dick about the financial help at the time).

Our high school drama teacher was originally from Oklahoma, and had taught high school here for several years. A couple of her students had gone on to compete in collegiate speech tournaments at OU (that would be the University of Oklahoma). The students came down and helped us once or twice, we went to watch some college tournaments, etc. At that point, I started considering OU as a college choice, and had planned to visit the campus.

The day before we were going to leave, I got the letter telling me I was a National Merit Scholar. I call the admissions office at OU, tell them this, and they basically fall all over themselves. OU has like the 2nd highest number of National Merit Scholars in their freshman class of any college in the country. Why? Largely, because they fucking throw money at your ass.

Anyway, back to the song. Somehow, some way, I managed to convince the parents that me and two of my friends were PERFECTLY capable of driving to Norman, Oklahoma by ourselves.

To this day, I am not sure how in the fuck I managed to accomplish this.

So of course, we set out with a cooler full of wine coolers, a few packs of cigarettes, a jambox, and my mom's old Celebrity. On the way to Oklahoma, I got a speeding ticket. My first one ever. I didn't even think that car would GO 80. About 150 miles later...we blow a tire, just outside of Rice, Texas. A nice farmer rescued us, and then we got to go to the local tire shop and I had to talk to "Ott", the redneck tire salesman. Further along the way, we got lost trying to find the Arbuckle Wilderness (the Okie version of a drive-through safari park).

The whole trip, we were listening to The Pixies Doolittle album. Even though that trip took forever, it was still a tremendous foray into the world of freedom, and I will never forget that feeling. Every time I listen to that CD, I think about that road trip.

Song #8: "Love Shack" - The B-52's

On my 16th birthday (it fell on a Saturday) we were having an all-day rehearsal for our spring play. The teacher directing this one (the evil cunt was actually only the head drama teacher...there were two more) really got into building sets. So actually, most of the day was spent painting plywood and/or styrofoam, and listening to the Cosmic Thing album over and over. At the end of the day, they surprised me with a birthday cake. I was totally shocked...I didn't think anyone cared or remembered (except a few of my closer friends). Despite the fact that it wasn't an actual party, it was still a really good birthday.

Song #9: "Raindrops Keep Falling on My Head" - BJ Thomas

This is one of the very first songs I ever remember listening to. Well, other than the Mickey Mouse Club song, and the "Letter B" song from Sesame Street. My parents had one of those old-school tape recorders with a separate microphone (come to think of it, I am sure this was the flower of late 70's technology). I carried that shit around everywhere, alternately listening to music and recording myself singing, conducting fake interviews, dramatizing god knows what... We had a tape with this song. It wasn't a commercial was a homemade Longines Symphonette with a blue and white label. I listened to this damn song so many times that I eventually broke the tape. It was extremely upsetting to me at the time. I now have the MP3 downloaded.

Song #10: "Last Dance" - Donna Summer

When I first started working at FHH, Friday night happy hour was at least a monthly occurrence. Usually, it was just the girls (paralegals, secretaries, maybe one or two of the associates)...we'd go have some 80 cent beer at Henry Hudson's and then go see a stupid chick movie. However, one evening, I ended up going for drinks with a group of the attorneys. We just planned to do happy hour at a local bar...but they kept bringing us drinks, and free snacks, and we were there till almost 10. At that point, someone got the bright idea (okay, I'm sure I was in on this) to go do some karaoke. We consulted the local independent weekly, which lists all the bars and all the bands and all the shit happening around town, and found some dive-ass bar that did karaoke every night. We all cruise on over there, and most of us don't get to sing, because it was late when we got there and the place was pretty packed. However, a group of us did get to sing this particular the last one of the night.

It was a really fun almost made me happy I worked there.

I could go on, but this is already an endless entry, and I applaud any of you who have actually read the whole thing. I'll save more of my "life soundtrack" musings for another day when I can't think of crap to say.



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