Friday, February 08, 2008

The Song Remembers When

You know how a song can trigger memories? Certain songs will always put me in the company of certain friends, recalling memories long forgotten, remind me of the person I was. Mostly these memories are good, sometimes not, but all remind me of a piece of me. I think this is the hazard of having my iPod on random shuffle at the gym. The other night I mentally traveled over a dozen years or more…

First to come on in the memory rotation was Insensitive by Jann Arden . Ahhh… High School. My friend Kelly and I used to blare this song any time it came on the radio. In her room, in my car… where ever. The latest boy being serenaded about “vagueness in your eyes and casual good-byes” by us at the top of our lungs. High School boys being insensitive by nature, I thought I would never feel the heartbreak I thought I felt then. I was wrong. I wonder sometimes about Kelly also, my friend that I shared so much happiness and heartache with. I hear through the grapevine that she’s working, still living locally, and yet I find it hard to reach out to her. I suppose I am uncertain of my welcome, ah the drama of youthful misunderstandings.

Up next, the song that has been so often played over the last year you’d think I would remove it from my iPod entirely, Rhianna’s Umbrella. I apologize now if anyone gets that chorus stuck in their head from this post. Umbrella, eh, eh, eh. Back when the song was new(ish) my friend Cate and I had gone to a Chili Cook-Off with TheBoy. We heard the song on the way to the event and that was it – instant repeat. A bajillion cups of chili and way too many beers later, the song came on again, on the car ride home. Cate and I were drunkenly singing along when TheBoy informed us that we were crazy… There was no “umbrella” in that song. I believe he thought the lyrics were something along the lines of “you can stand under my arm forever”. Foolish Boy. Of course we then proceeded to find the song on his iPod and play it on repeat the entire 25 minute ride home, being sure to emphasize every time the word umbrella was mentioned. I’m sure looking back we were highly annoying but after a few beers? Eh… good times!

What About by Janet Jackson.. This album got me through my first year of college. I danced with a company at the local junior college and several of these songs were featured in the show. It was my “get ready to go out with the girls” album. Every song meant something to me. Especially What About. At the time I was dating my high school sweetheart still. Things were rocky and I knew he didn’t love me. Like a foolish girl I couldn’t seem to let go. Until I realized the truth of the words in this song. “What about the times you lied to me, What about the times you said no one would want me, What about all the shit you've done to me, What about that? What about the times you yelled at me, What about the times I cried, You wouldn't even hold me, What about those things? What about that?” I’d like to say I found the courage to leave him from this song. Sadly, that day didn’t come for several more years.

And then the infamous Pour Some Sugar on Me by Def Leppard. This song was my car’s anthem y’all. I would go flying around downtown, top down, sunglasses on, blaring this song at full volume and singing along at the top of my lungs. I wonder sometimes what people thought as a drove by, young blonde woman, hair flying, screaming about “pour some sugar on me, in the name of love!” Ah youth. I’m not saying I still don’t squeal like a girl and drag my friends out on the dance floor anytime it comes on… But I don’t play it quite as loud in my car any longer. No need for the neighbors to know exactly when I come and go. And that car has lasted me almost 8 years. We have a LOT of memories together.

Of course other songs played during my stint on the treadmill, these are the few that I am still remembering days later. It almost makes me look forward to going to a run again tonight. Where will I travel down memory lane? Will I be happy, nostalgic, angry at myself or at someone else?

What songs carry memories for you?

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