hearts wrapped in blankets
I don't know sh** about love.
And I don't pretend to. Valentine's Day has never really meant anything to me, except that I could probably expect some chocolate hearts from my mom. I'm 26 years old now, and I've never "celebrated" Valentine's Day with a significant other. I'm not whining or complaining, just merely stating a fact. Besides, I'm far too messed-up to be involved with anybody right now, or anytime in the foreseeable future really.
Honestly, I have been so bitter & depressed over the last four years or so, it's not suprising that I haven't been out there on the dating circuit. Heck, I'm amazed my friends still bother to hang with me at times. Even before that, during my college days, my intense self-consciousness & general lack of self-esteem never made me a real winner with the ladies anyway. So I'm plenty used to being alone by now. I've got much bigger issues than a lack of companionship, believe me. And I'm not thrilled about them either.
In "Love Is No Big Truth," Eirik & Erlend, aka Kings of Convenience, have crafted what seems like an anti-Valentines song. Its lyrics speak of love being driven by genetics, as we are all "simple selfish beings." So much for true, selfless love. But the song, from last year's Riot on an Empty Street LP, is revealed to be something else by the end with the line, "Another view of what there is to it, getting me through it" followed by a repeated refrain of "I'll never need it again, not again, not again." Eirik & Erlend don't necessarily take this logical, more cynical view of love, but they are trying to convince themselves of it anyway in order to get through the heartbreak.
So I'm not out there meeting girls, but I do spend a heckuva lot of time fiddling around on this blog, which will have its first birthday in a little less than a month. I've never really kept a journal or anything, so this thing was pretty much started on a lark, but over time has become something I devote a good deal of thought & effort toward, something I care about.
But I also know that it's a little ridiculous & somewhat sad to feel that way about something inanimate, even if it happens to be clickable. I keep coming back to a particular Jenny Lewis line in "It's A Hit," when she sings:
Any asshole can open up a museum
Put all of the things he loves on display
so everyone could see them
Isn't that what this blog is? It's basically a collection of stuff that I like. So I'm that asshole, right? I try not to take any of this stuff too seriously, but yet I'm still spending hours upon hours pasting URL's & typing other nonsense into Blogger, not going out and you know, getting on with my life.
I suppose a blog is a way to express one's self, much like the titular "band" in this wonderfully fuzzed-out track from The Radio Dept. I got turned onto these Swedish indie-popsters through Mystery & Misery, 3hive, Pop77 and Bob Mould late last year & have been tracking down songs ever since. This song is off the 2003 Pulling Our Weight EP (read the PopMatters review), which apparently is difficult to find, so you might want to get it from the band's home label, Labrador (scroll down). The Radio Dept.'s debut LP, 2003's Lesser Matters, is also available from XL & Shelflife records.
Even though I'm somewhat keeping to myself, I don't even know if I actually feel "lonely" anymore. It's been so long since I've met someone that I could be interested in, since I've had any kind of "romantic" feelings stirred up in me, that I've sorta become numb to it all. Heartache is no longer an issue. But I do miss being open to those kind of feelings. The pleasure I take out of all the other things I like has been dulled as a result, and I wish I could find something to be truly passionate about again. I used to enjoy being enthusiastic about stuff, or at least I think I did.
I envy the hopeful romanticism of Broken Social Scene pop-offshoot Stars. The blissed-out, heart-on-their-sleeve melodies of Amy Milan, Evan Cranley & company almost always bring a smile to my face. Stars' 2003 album Heart may be a bit cheesy at times, but its earnestness manages to win you over. "Look Up" is almost cinematic in how its chorus explodes out of each verse, exuding a kind of joy I'd love to reconnect with. The latest Stars LP, Set Yourself on Fire, finally gets a US release on March 8.
I'm still able to get in touch with my inner-romantic, though I do find it difficult at times. But I did I feel it while watching Tim & Dawn finally come together at the end of The Office. I felt it during the opening sequence of Eternal Sunshine, in the brief moment when Joel looks upon the beautiful, peacefully sleeping Clem before jostling her awake after a long drive, when she instinctually takes his hand in hers. It's what keeps me watching the ever-erratic ER after all these years, hoping that Carter & Abby will find their way back to each other. It's what fondly recalls the newness of Ross & Rachel during the first season of Friends (before they ruined them). It's what remembers watching Before Sunrise late at nite as a teenager, tearing up when Jesse & Celine share that intense embrace, as if they will never see each other again, before excusing their way out of it. It's what keeps me looking for new music to inspire me, keeps me going to see bands in search of a sublime experience, and keeps me coming back to this blog.
random notes for valentines day
My apologies for getting this up so late. It took a while to finally finish.
My best thoughts & wishes go out to Air America's Randi Rhodes, who is having surgery today. Here's hoping that all goes well & she gets well soon.
A (not so) fond farewell to Flip Saunders, long time head coach of my beloved-yet-woefully underachieving Wolves, who was fired over the weekend. Head honcho & hall of famer Kevin McHale reluctantly steps into Saunders' role, drawing the unfortunate task of reviving a team that's shockingly under .500 before the all-star break. Good luck, Kev.
Didn't watch 'em. Don't care. Happy Valentines Day. Hoobastank.