Thursday, March 22, 2012

A Certain Kind of Sadness

There's a kind of nostalgia/sadness brought about by music. It doesn't necessarily have to do with the music itself. It's almost like the music induces a state, which may or may not be similar to a state you have experienced in the past, but which the music replicates, without transition, and seemingly instantaneously. I only mention this because

  1. The song "Somebody That I Used to Know" transports me there in one note. BOOM! I'm there. See this.   
  2. How to even describe this "there"? Well. It's a post-college angst. It's an "I'm in love with this person who may or may not often mistake me for a lamppost."  It's an "I'm reading or have read Alan Watts The Wisdom of Insecurity and I may be taking his ideas to heart" kind of angst. 
  3. There is a very specific person with whom this angst/feeling is associated. But I don't want you to mistake this feeling for the idea that I am still in love with him/was ever in love with him/am still not over him, because that's not it.
  4. Also, this idea of a person I was in love with and a feeling associated with a very specific time in my life (with which I also associate 40 oz. beers and mazurka cookies), it's more a whole mood, tone, as if that time in my life was a fog that enveloped me, which it did. Also it involved beer, and our local, which was called Targy's Tavern. Also, I should tell you about the night I played pool with my friend Patty and played every Beatles song on the juke box until I found the one I really, actually, seriously wanted it and it was "Norwegian Wood."
  5. Somewhere, right at that very moment, the one where I was at the bar, drinking cheap beer and wanting so much to be in love with the guy who just couldn't, for whatever reason, love me the way I needed to be loved, right at that moment, Kurt Cobain was radically unhappy, and he, too, felt this kind of angst, and though he dealt with it in a different way, you will never convince me that the angst we felt was not of the same species.
  6. And when I hear "Come As You Are" I think of walking down Broadway and getting Pizza at Pagliacci's, and a car passes by, and Nirvana streams out the window. We are young and so, so sad. It's sunny in Seattle and we don't seem to notice. Do you remember how it feels when you just want a person to hold your hand and you think that the world would break apart?
  7. That's the place a song can transport you to. The space between your breasts, beneath your rib cage, at the end of the bar, in front of a pint of beer, at the corner in a cloud of smoke, in the distance of a drunken sprint to the end of the block.
  8. Oh, Kurt Cobain. Oh, nameless lost love. Oh, sad singer-songwriter.
  9. There are so many Washington, rain, music related near misses that I cannot relate them all to you here. Nor would I want to.
  10. Suffice it say: a song can transport me there. There. Yes, here.


Lisa B. said...

Oh yes. And it does this's.youth, but not only that. I feel like I have so many memories associated with specific songs and my children. Also: 'A Case of You.' Also:' Rocket Man.'

Condiment said...

Yes, I think so.

radagast said...

Beautiful post, doc. If only it could find its way into, I don't know, like a chapbook, maybe, a chapbook that, I don't know, was somehow focused on music and its impact on our lives? That would be cool.
There are certainly songs that transport me this way, but I can't help wishing there had been more beer and music in my younger days.

KimBoise said...

omg... you just took me there with you. The sweet angst and memory of walking down the street in the snow with a Someone who I eventually treated shabbily. It ended with us sitting on Waikiki Beach sobbing together while both of our hearts broke because of me. Angst wrapped with a small bow of sweetness. The events and memories that hopefully make us better people for the Next Someone.