It has just been too long, I have been too busy, the world spins too quickly, and I spin with it, but I always have a playlist while I work regardless, so it's absurd that I haven't just typed it up here. Other projects have me absurdly busy (one, a book about Lewis Carroll that I've been slaving over lately, not to mention another that I just finished). More, I'm trying to prepare a syllabus for spring semester (graduate level book editing, so this is no small feat this time).
Overbooked, dizzying amounts of work, but doing the list is actually a pleasure and not a chore, and I must thank Steve for the kick in the pants to get me back to it.
So thanks for that!
Enough said - the list of the moment.
Thanks for listening, as ever.
"La Cienega Just Smiled" by Ryan Adams: Of all the songs on Gold, I think this is the best cut. "Answering Bell" is also a great cut, but this one strikes me as the more profound. The lyrics seem more real here… “I’m too scared to know how I feel about you now…” This much rings true. God knows I’ve been there. There are times when it is scary to admit how just how much one cares because those intense feelings can be absolutely terrifying, especially if uninvited or inconvenient or unexpected. To guess, I think that’s what Adams means here – how we feel about another can, under the wrong circumstances, be scary as hell, especially if we know we ought not feel that way, or if it is inconvenient in some way (bad timing, other relationships, the impossibility of it all, and so on… or perhaps the feelings are unreturned or the relationship is unworkable for some reason).
Whatever the matter is in this case, Adams keeps coming back to the refrain, “I’m too scared to know how I feel about you now…” and this, I think, almost all of us can relate to. Perhaps if not in the present, then in the past, and if you haven’t yet been there, trust me, you will, and it will hurt like hell. If any song captures the feeling and the wistfulness of such relationships, it's this one by Ryan Adams, who seems to be particularly good at capturing relationships (“Come Pick Me Up” is another classic, but that has more to do with being in the relationship or just ending it and a fucked up relationship at that — about getting fucked, and then getting fucked, if you follow).