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Soundtrack Of My Life

long winded
I've been meaning to do this for a really long time. For years I've kept a list of songs that mean something to me, whether it's because they describe me or because they capture some aspect of my life well. Finally I collected thirteen songs that captured a key era in my life: the transition from the old me--the one who believed her world was doomed when her expectations weren't met or when she disappointed another--to the new me, who has learned to live from day to day and to see where life takes her. If I've learned anything, it's that life will always get in the way of your plans. This doesn't mean that we shouldn't plan, though. Without further ado, here's the soundtrack.

1) Beauty and the Beast soundtrack (Paige O'Hara) : Belle
Townsfolk: Look there she goes that girl is strange, no question
Dazed and distracted, can't you tell?
Woman: Never part of any crowd
Man: 'Cause her head's up on some cloud
Townsfolk: No denying she's a funny girl that Belle
[...]
Townsfolk:
Look there she goes that girl is so peculiar
I wonder if she's feeling well
With a dreamy, far-off look
And her nose stuck in a book
What a puzzle to the rest of us is Belle


This is my opener, where we introduce the main character--in this case, me. We all know I'm a bit out there--not paying too much attention to the world in the first place, always lost in my own little world.

2) The Beatles : Paperback Writer
It's a thousand pages, give or take a few,
I'll be writing more in a week or two.
I can make it longer if you like the style,
I can change it round and I want to be a paperback writer,
Paperback writer.


This was my dream: I wanted to be a novelist. I still do, really. But do I have the talent?

3) Jonathan Coulton : Skullcrusher Mountain
I’m so into you
But I’m way too smart for you
Even my henchmen think I’m crazy
I’m not surprised that you agree
[...]
I made this half-pony half-monkey monster to please you
But I get the feeling that you don’t like it
What’s with all the screaming?
You like monkeys, you like ponies
Maybe you don’t like monsters so much
Maybe I used too many monkeys
Isn’t it enough to know that I ruined a pony making a gift for you?


I had many crushes during middle school and the first few years of high school. None of them liked me back, though. I think I alarmed them quite a bit, or as I tried to figure out, "Why can't smart people date?" Maybe I was too smart for them. Or maybe I just scared them with my eccentric ways.

4) Five for Fighting : Superman (It's Not Easy)
It may sound absurd:but don't be naive
Even Heroes have the right to bleed
I may be disturbed:but won't you conceed
Even Heroes have the right to dream
It's not easy to be me


I could just cut and paste the entire song here. It described me that well during that "zomg I'm so smart and so special so why doesn't anyone understand me?" time of my life. This was during the time that my biggest fear was failure. What is it now? That's an entry of its own.

5) Matchbox Twenty : Unwell
Talking to myself in public
Dodging glances on the train
I know
I know they've all been talking 'bout me
I can hear them whisper
And it makes me think there must be something wrong
With me
Out of all the hours thinking
Somehow
I've lost my mind


But even when everone expected me to be so perfect, I was a teenager. And for many teens (including myself), this means trying to fit into mainstream teenage society. I couldn't do this because I was, well, me.

6) Train : Drops of Jupiter
Tell me did you sail across the sun
Did you make it to the Milky Way to see the lights all faded
And that heaven is overrated
Tell me, did you fall for a shooting star
One without a permanent scar
And did you miss me while you were looking at yourself out there


The changes begin. So I was out and about doing all this stuff to make me, well, special. And I felt special. Not just because everyone was throwing all this attention on me, but because I was improving myself as a person, despite being the messed-up high school student that I was. (We could debate whether I'm a messed-up college student, though.) But when I returned to where I started, back to who I viewed as ordinary people, they were just that. Ordinary. And I was special. This was no way to see the world. Was I special just because I did something that they hadn't? Of course not. Something had to change.

7) Yann Tiersen : La Valse d'Amélie (Version Piano)
No lyrics here. Sorry. It's a perfect transition from the past to the present, though--from the heavy to the light, from burden-laden me to burden-free (for the most part) me.

8) Sister Hazel : Change Your Mind
If you want to be somebody else,
If you're tired of fighting battles with yourself
If you want to be somebody else
Change your mind...
[...]
Hey hey-
what ya say
We both go and seize the day
'cause what's your hurry
what's your hurry anyway


Why live a life of regret? I asked myself. I'll only wallow in it and in the past and never live for the present. I'll never get to enjoy all the small things of life, those things that so many people fail to notice. I don't know about you, but buying new underwear can sometimes be the highlight of my day now.

9) Alanis Morissette : You Learn
I recommend biting off more then you can chew to anyone
I certainly do
I recommend sticking your foot in your mouth at any time
Feel free
Throw it down (the caution blocks you from the wind)
Hold it up (to the rays)
You wait and see when the smoke clears


Once again, I could just cut and paste the entire song. I certainly have bitten off more than I could chew. Doing that has led to some of the most rewarding experiences of my life. Opening mouth and inserting foot has led to some awkward moments, but the laughter that usually leads afterward is definitely worth it. But this is something I learned after starting to change my mindset on life. We learn from everything. I learned from my past life that we can't just live in regret, and I'm changing because of that.

10) John Mayer : No Such Thing
I'd like to think the best of me
Is still hiding up my sleeve
They love to tell you stay inside the lines
But something's better on the other side


When I was a kid, I was expert at coloring inside the lines, despite coloring outside the lines in just about everything else. Sure, I never caused a ruckus in the classroom except when I was bored and needed something new to occupy my mind, and even then the ruckus was silent, such as when the teacher would get on to me for reading instead of paying attention. I've become even better at the unconventional ever since crossing the line.

11) Enya : Only Time
Who can say
where the road goes
where the day flows
only time
And who can say
if your love grows
as your heart chose
only time


I've always been a meticulous planner, right down to the small details. There are some things, though, that not even the most meticulous planning can decide, like what I really want to do with the rest of my life. I found this out last week with my discovery. Only time can tells. I'll let time decide.

12) Sheryl Crow : Soak Up The Sun
I'm gonna soak up the sun
I'm gonna tell everyone to lighten up
I'm gonna tell 'em that I've got no one to blame
For every time I feel lame, I'm lookin' up


Which makes me wonder: now that I'm free of my past, why isn't everyone else? I'm not exactly on a mission to free everyone of their pasts and make them just like me (actually, making everyone just like me would be kind of scary), but seeing so many people sad over one thing they could have done makes me sad because of them. Why can't they just make the best of what they have?

13) Jonathan Coulton : The Future Soon
Cause it’s gonna be the future soon
And I won’t always be this way
When the things that make me weak and strange get engineered away
It’s gonna be the future soon
I’ve never seen it quite so clear
And when my heart is breaking I can close my eyes and it’s already here


You know I had to include a second JoCo song on here. Besides, this one is the perfect closer: unrequited love, being alone during couples skate, dreaming of taking over the world (with robots). It's perfect. It's my song of optimism. Yes, I'm a nerd. Yes, I'm very proud of being a nerd and everything else that I am. One day, though, I won't seem such a freak for it.

By the way, all this will fit on a CD. As soon as I get around to it, I'll have it on one.

Comments

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sushimustwrite
Apr. 4th, 2007 12:35 am (UTC)
I don't remember if we were talking about it or not, but I was already planning this entry for a long time. Doooo it.
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