Don’t be a Menace

Well that was a horrific blog entry from yesterday. It’s disheartening to go back and read something you wrote to find that even as the author, you can’t understand what the hell you were trying to say. Good thing I’m starting my Reading for Beginners class on Wednesday. I think I had several paragraphs of whining I needed to get out about all my college friends being overachievers and getting all sorts of impressive sounding initials behind their names.

But I shouldn’t be whining because I don’t want to go to grad school. Never did really. Though both work and school have annoyances, I prefer those of the working world. Actually I prefer the annoyances of the independently wealthy world, but those seem to be out of my reach at the moment.

What I really want to be whining about is a stupid boy and a stupid breakup which still has me feeling blue, even in spite of the shiny new iPod in my bag, which I named Juicy White Fruit. JWF is a dream, even though at first I felt funny about it. It’s a self-indulgent little bugger. And it’s especially weird since I’ve spent the last year sneering at anyone on the train with the tell-tale white earbuds. I actually don’t use the white earbuds. I prefer my big cushiony Sony headphones that double as earmuffs in the winter and neck accessories year round. I also try to be really inconspicuous about having JWF.

Appropriately, I’ve been ripping all my old CDs. Lots of stuff I haven’t listened to in forever. Lots of shitty embarrassing stuff, but some gems mixed in there too. Popping in each one has a way of transporting me to different cities, apartments, dorm rooms, and personalities. A certain Gladys Knight tune was exactly what I was listening to years and years ago while breaking up with the same person I am currently breaking up with. A shudder when that memory hit me. I rediscovered several terrible compilation albums I bought when I first started buying CDs and picked albums only on the principle of quantity. If it had 20 tracks, I bought it. I forgot I liked girly folk music like Rickie Lee Jones. (Still kinda do). Also I have a whole bunch of funny soundtracks like High School High and Don’t Be a Menace to South Central While Drinkin Your Juice in the Hood.

In the DVD extra of Almost Famous Cameron Crowe says he makes tapes of all the music he listens to by month, and he’s been doing it forever. So he’ll pop in a tape from, say, June 1985. It seems like a neat idea. (And even easier with playlists on iTunes.) But I like the random stumbling upon music. I don’t think it would be as meaningful if you sat down and prepared yourself to have a memory. Besides, I would think there’s a lot of overlap – especially with the timeless stuff that you keep going back to. In any case, lemme just say that I wish EPMD was still making records.

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