the filth took away my license

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Thursday, January 04, 2007
Today was my first real day back walking since my face betrayed me into surgery. (I went one other time, but it was WAY too soon and I could barely get to the park and back, let alone walk around once I got there.) It was good! It was also raining and cold and the path was muddy and gross, but somehow this all seemed as it should be since it's January in Oregon.

With the miserable nature of January in Oregon in mind, I have noticed that lately (post-hospital/post-holiday) I have been drawn to cheerfully misanthropic songs. Well, cheerfully misanthropic songs, songs that trigger my glee impulse (which is buried deep within my chest), and then, inexplicably, wildly sentimental songs. Oh! and as always, songs that are sexually inappropriate. (you know... the ones that are so damn catchy, but then you have to pray you don't absentmindedly sing along with them in public? It's not just me, right??)

Here's a short list (I'm sure that at least a few of these will have to go on a Cheerful Misanthrope CD mix soon -- I have to think about it a little more and decide if there is such a thing as cheerful misanthropy, or if it is actually just "being a sociopath" which seems a little less jolly. If I were a sociopath I wouldn't care about the distinction though, would I? Right? RIGHT??)

LDN -- Lily Allen: I am CRAZY about this song! In fact, I am actually upset that I never heard it until 2 days ago. The music is calypso jaunty, the lyrics are matter-of-fact jaded and cynical but sung so sweetly! "Ridin' through the city on my bike all day/ cause the filth took away my license" It's a love song to the seedy side of London, and I have a crazy crush on it. (It also reminds me of Run Lola Run, but I'll save that comparison for the inevitable mix CD post.)

I'm No Lover -- Antarctica Takes It!: !!! This sounds like a circus marching band bent on personal revenge... except there is some vigorous piano, which might be difficult to reproduce in circus marching band format. Regardless, I LOVE IT. "I'm not a lover, I'm a fighter/ and I will burn your house down" and so on. It is short and not-sweet but exuberant and exciting. (both this song and the previous were found on the excellent Best Songs of 2006 list at Said The Gramophone. The links may have already expired or will expire soon, but it's worth checking out for the writing and suggestions. Especially if, like me, you did piss-poor job keeping up with new music in the past year.)

Happiness Runs -- Donovan (or Mary Hopkin): I don't get it! here I am enjoying vicarious tales of revenge (I'm No Lover) and urban thuggery reportage (LDN), and then this crazy hippie happy song comes along and goddamn if I don't love it too. I know it's corny, but I don't care. "you can have everything if you let yourself be"

The Memphis Train -- Rufus Thomas: eeeeeeee! I am still nuts about this song. (it is GREAT in the car.) I think for me the love breaks down like this: random WOOOOO!'s, insane bass, train noises, horns, counting "train number one is gone...", all around excellence, and "oooooooeeeee, that memphis train". I have it from the Mystery Train soundtrack, which also features the excellent Soul Finger by The Bar-Kays.

Jack U Off -- Robyn: (prince cover) ha ha ha! guess which category this one falls into? There is just something so deliciously twisted around about this song -- it's just her voice and a really loud piano and eyebrow raising lyrics (which I bet you'd never guess from the title!). Ooh, here Pitchfork describes what makes it work for me: "Still, she takes obvious glee in the song's brattiness and, like Prince, recognizes the comedic absurdity of the single entendre. Also like Prince, Robyn manages to make it equally funny and sexy, which is no small feat."

Hooray For Love -- Ella Fitzgerald: from Ella Sings the Best of the Songbooks. This song has been torturing me -- I wake up with it in my head (for no good reason, I assure you). Yet, I like it. There are better songs in this collection, but I think I must be drawn to this because of the "hooray!" and because it acknowledges that love is not composed only of binary Moonlight or Misery options. The song is an examination of the variety of experience. A swingin' examination of the variety of experience. Sometimes good, sometimes bad, but ultimately... "just the same, hooray for love!"
6 comments on "the filth took away my license"
  1. Sounds like a mix I can't wait to hear. I am so happy that you are getting back to you. You really scared some people. Shame on you for that and I am so glad you are okay. Really. For realz.

  2. Hey, I am up for that new mix!

  3. Aw, thanks Daniel! I am happy to be feeling more like myself, too.

    I will let you guys know if a mix transpires... I'm thinking it will because I need an easy way to hear some of these songs EVERYWHERE, and having a CD does facilitate, even in this iPod age.

  4. I would like to be on the permanent list for any mixes you are sharing!

  5. I would also like to be on that proposed permanent list as I have never been let down by a Winn-Mixie.

  6. you guys are ON THE LIST! (just imagine stephen colbert saying it for extra drama)


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