Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Wine, Women & Songs

Well, I don't drink, so....
I think it was Rastro at La Historia De La Musica Rock who touched on the idea of couples having "their song" awhile back. I know lotsa couples have their own "special" song, even if 1 of the parties doesn't particularly LIKE the song in question. 4 many couples, 1 particular piece of music seems 2 sum-up events or recall the time & place of their meeting, attraction, their struggle 2 B together, how good it was when everything worked, etc.
I've been thinking about this ever since, thinking this subject was perfect 4 Valentine's Day. But this post has been delayed by windstorms, rainstorms, 6-hour power-outages, rotten weather in general, bad Internet connections, & a partial loss of nerve.
I don't know about any other couple's special songs, but I know of a few dozen that still conjure up memories of the women I've been attracted 2, married 2, lived with. & here they are....
The 1st girl I remember ever declaring my love 4 was a cute, short, funny brunette named Connie, in Boise, Idaho, in 1975. She was 13. I was 15 at the time. She was sharp -- she seemed to see right thru people, knew everything that was going on, but wouldn't say a word until you asked. I could make her laugh 'til she stopped breathing with my stupid jokes, & I was touched that she thot I was un-dorky enuf 2 laff WITH rather than AT.
When I finally got up the nerve 2 tell her how great I thot she was, she waved me off, saying she'd only hurt me. I couldn't see how, but obviously Connie did: She ended up with my step-brother Jay (I'll write more about him someday, he's more like the subject 4 a book), & after that failed 2 work, less than 3 years later she wound-up pregnant & married. & not to me.
The J. Geils Band's "Must of Got Lost" was the theme song 4 R failed relationship. Tho Connie dodged me 4 my step-brother, she didn't want me 2 B alone -- she tried 2 stick her sister Debbie with me, & that didn't work either....
1 night early in April about a year after I stopped seeing her, Connie called my house claiming 2 B pregnant & implying that I was the father. I was speechless. I'd never even held her hand. The silence stretched until she started laffing & let me in on the April Fool's joke. But I guess the joke came back 2 get her later....
A coupla years later I met Allison, my highschool sweetheart. We made eyes at each other in Newspaper class 4 a coupla months, then she invited me 2 her 17th birthday party over the summer, & B4 that party was over I knew I was in love. & I was scared 2 death. So I wrote her a long letter proclaiming my adoration, then went on a week-long vacation with my family.
When I got back, Al dragged me out 2 talk about this further. She hadta work pretty hard 2 get thru 2 me -- I was painfully shy, I'd never kissed a girl, never held any1 close. She worked thru all that -- Ghod knows why she had the patience. 2 the 17-year-old innocent me she was like a goddess. She pointed out that Simon & Garfunkel's "For Emily, Whenever I May Find Her" sorta summed-up the fragility of the early part of R relationship.
Al was a big music fan -- if the music was up 2 her classical-based tastes. She could be awfully picky. We both loved the Moody Blues & Providence's EVER SENSE THE DAWN, but most pop music of the day she thot was mush. When running around Boise in her poky '62 Ford Fairlane we'd try 2 sing duets on lite stuff like the Beach Boys' "Sloop John B." She was a big Paul Simon fan, 2 -- out of nowhere she'd start singing "50 Ways to Leave Your Lover." While driving around she'd sing the lead & I'd do the echo-vocal on Simon & Phoebe Snow's "Gone at Last."
& 2 years later when she dumped me, she bequeathed 2 me Gentle Giant's "On Reflection." Probably a good thing she never heard the Giant's "Funny Ways."
Tina followed a few months later. The X-girlfriend of my best friend Don, Tina's life was a mess. I thot I could rescue her. I was an idiot.
She adopted summa my strange music. Renaissance's "Ocean Gypsy" seemed 2 especially appeal 2 her -- a gentle portrait of a woman overcome by disaster. That was her, alright. She was also a big fan of Renaissance's "Northern Lights."
I thot Journey's "Feeling That Way/Anytime" made a good theme song 4 her, & 4 the football-team's-worth of lovers she apparently tried out while she was supposedly "with" me. Arguing constantly & spending R emotions on other people, we made it thru 3 chaotic years B4 she dumped me & married a friend of mine who'd been sharing R apartment....
Cyndi came along next, when we were both tired of dating & just wanted some1 2 talk 2 & relax with. We ended up getting married & lived with each other 4 17 years. Some of those were kinda happy, & we got 2 marvelous kids out of it.
When we 1st met R theme song was the Go-Go's "Vacation" -- I guess because after I met her, we spent the next 10 days 2gether & I never even bothered 2 call home & tell my family where I was. Later R theme song was Chicago's "Hard to Say I'm Sorry" -- I guess because it was hard 4 me 2 say I'm sorry about some things.... Cyndi put up with a lot 4 a lotta years. I know I'm a moody guy 2 live with. & I know I was way worse back then.
It took Cyndi a long time 2 figure-out what she wanted 2 do with her life. When she finally decided what she was going 2 do -- at age 40 -- the next thing she decided was that she didn't want to do it with me. When she'd decided she was going 2 move out but hadn't left yet, the only music she'd play was Melissa Etheridge's album BREAKDOWN -- over & over, at top volume. That album actually has some pretty good stuff on it. But it was so loud neither the kids or I could sleep thru it -- I was 2 stressed-out & sad 2 even ask her 2 turn it down. When she finally left, she bequeathed 2 me Alanis Morissette's "You Oughta Know."
Deb's theme song at 1st was Mary-Chapin Carpenter's "Passionate Kisses" -- I was listening 2 a lot of women country singers then, & it reminded me of her: "Shouldn't I have this...?" Much later her theme song was Avril Lavigne's "I'm With You," which I thot summed-up our very brief relationship: "I don't know who you are, but I'm with you...."
Mary is Nick Drake's BRYTER LAYTER, Caravan's "All the Way," & Rod Stewart's "Handbags and Gladrags," which I never woulda heard if Mary hadn't turned me on 2 it.
"You Oughta Know" reared its ugly head here, 2: After 1 of R early fallings-out & make-ups, Mary gave me a stuffed cross-eyed bear as a symbol of R relationship. 2 me the bear stands 4 being able 2 love some1 no matter what their faults, no matter the history the couple shares. I've still got the bear, its silly face is beaming at me right now from across the room. & of course the bear is based on a mis-hearing of 1 of Alanis's lines from the song: "The cross I bear that you gave to me...."
Mary has put up with more crap from me over the past 10 years than Cyndi EVER did. But I'm still 2 close 2 this relationship 2 know if there R other songs that fit as well -- Mary's a big Pink Floyd fan, but I think you'd havta go a long way 2 find a Floyd song that's suitable 4 couples. Definitely not "One of My Turns" or "The Trial." Or "One of These Days," "Comfortably Numb," "Run Like Hell".... "High Hopes," maybe? "Wish You Were Here"?
Happy Late Valentine's Day!
...& you & your Significant Other's special song is...?

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