In times like these, we need the past, because for this one, shining moment in time, it may be the only thing we have total control over.
So I am sitting here watching Chasing Amy because I was looking for an old movie. I had something more like The Graduate, Cat On A Hot Tin Roof, or The Apartment in mind, but here we are. I spent a good, long time trying to figure out what my password was to this website. That was depressing in its own way. Me clickity-clacking over here, trying to remember what the damn email was for this thing, and then me verbally bashing myself for not getting on here more often to write. Then me thinking, we really can’t deal with much more negativity right now in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, so how about you just stop your chattering, and be grateful that you got on. It’s cool. Just cool it! “It’s the end of the world as we know it…and I feel FINEEEEE!” she sang through clenched teeth.
Chasing Amy is a good film. Yes, it is a film. Dialogue is damn solid. Go ahead judge away. I love myself some Kevin Smith. Everyone wants Ben Affleck to express his undying love for them, and beg for a relationship in the pouring rain. ::couple beats:: Even now, even present day Ben Affleck. Yes. You do!
That, and for the love of all things that are holy, I just need a minute to go back in time to when things weren’t that scary. Remember? When we weren’t all terrified. I’m turning back the clock every which way I know how from remembering what January and February of this year were like, because Christ, now every week feels like a month.
Like Cher, I am turning back time, left, right, and center, but in the midst of all of it is music. I’m going back to high school stuff, middle school tunes, and stuff I listened to between 2007-2013. Why does it stop in 2013? Good question, because in the last six years music has become increasing difficult for an old broad like me to acquire. I miss Strawberries, man. I miss downloading music on Napster and even the old ITunes, but now I’m just lost. iTunes changed things they were doing like four years ago, and I’ve been stumped every since. Spotify, I haven’t got to time for that. Well, shit, actually I do. Got nothing, but time. Hmm. See writing helps you problem solve, people.
But yeah music, it’s very healing. Thankfully I have a very deep catalogue that runs from 1990s to the aforementioned 2013. I stopped downloading around time I stopped drinking. Former favorite pasttime was drinking and listening to music. People talk about drunk dialing, nah that wasn’t for me. I would drunk download. U2 Songs of Innocence, Natalie Maines, and some other weird stuff that I am embarrassed to type got into my iTunes playlist during some dark times. I had Achtung Baby on cassette (bought at Strawberries) that was as far as I thought I would run the ball with U2. Until some 20 years later when in a blackout I thought, “Hey Songs of Innocence” sure,” ::click:: and again here we are.
Right so, music. When things really hit the fan a couple weeks ago up here in Massachusetts, I started playing some music in my office again and during my commutes. Before that I was all podcasts all the time, because feelings…I didn’t want to feel them. Now I was listening to loud heavy metal, 80s pop, 90s R and B, 2000s alternative, all of my favorites. This was a great way to keep me distracted while I worked, amped up while I was driving home into the great unknown.
Then something weird happened, I started to feel again, which was the opposite of what I wanted to happen. I started to fucking feel things. I slowly dipped my toe back into some familiar favorite ground, including Staind and Seether which I had sworn off in 2015 for fear of crying. Music does that, it makes you cry. It brings up the past, the great, the good, the bad, and the ugly of the past. In times like these, we need the past, because for this one, shining moment in time, it may be the only thing we have total control over. We must radically accept it, appreciate it, and sing those songs that make us feel alive. Feeling alive means experiencing a full range of emotions — sad, happy, pissy, content, anxious, thrilled, mad, and so much more. It stinks, but it is quite necessary.
While listening, I’ve cried in my car (my favorite place to cry…no one can see your tears at 60 MPH), while running, at my desk at work, in the kitchen, everywhere. I told myself the tears are cleansing. Salt water heals all wounds and all that happy horseshit. I’m processing thoughts and feelings inside of me, making changes about what I want out of this life, where I want to go, and how I want my life to be lived. Hopefully, the rest of us are doing the same while we are cooped up, faced with our own mortalities as we see the body count grow with each day.
Think about it…what do you want? Like really want? Ask yourself that as you look at your reflection in your next Zoom meeting call, or mirror, whichever. Ask and keep asking, “What do I want?” every single time. Then listen to some music from when you were a kid, adolescent, young adult, and adult. Think about your past. As messed up as it was, it’s yours and it was all a beautiful journey that got you here, to this moment. Celebrate it. Honor it, and love yourself enough to ask what did I learn from it, and what do I really, really want moving forward?
Go ahead…..scare yourself…What are you going to do with “your one wild and precious life?” And, yeah, I know everyone and their grandfather is quoting Mary Oliver right now, but let’s face it, I can’t think of a time that “The Summer Day” was more relevant. So, go ahead, come at me, bro. Come at me! Tell me I’m hackneyed fool.
Then… Cry Smile Yell Freak out
Let it all out!
Start with some music…see where it goes. It’s your journey make it a good one.
What. Do. You. Want?