I still feel a bit remiss about not having written more about Christmas music this year, as this is one holiday to which music -- and particularly pop music! -- is closely tied.
However, time marches on and, as is always the case in my life, I have to swoop directly from Christmas-thoughts to birthday-thoughts. My birthday is today. December 26. And it always has been!
Last year on this date I posted a Morrissey song, and my half-baked thoughts about the nature of aging (as seen through the lens of my continuing interest/obsession in modern monarchies).
Incidentally that Morrissey song, "That's How People Grow Up", is an amazing song and also holds the personal distinction of being the very first song I ever played on air at WCBN. Not unintentionally.
I think it would be a fun tradition to, as long as I have this blog, do the Morrissey thing on my birthday. Not least because a birthday should be a day of self-indulgence (in this case intellectually AND aesthetically, whee hee) but also because it should also be a day of self-honesty. And when I am truly being honest with myself, I see that my Morrissey "thing", my "thing" about Morrissey, is pretty revealing.
I have now been 26 for approximately 26 minutes. I can already sense it will be an interesting age. Old enough to know how young I actually am, and young enough to worry that I am getting old. But one thing I am (thankfully) realizing as I get older, at the rate of approximately one day per day, is that once you've been through enough environments and iterations as a person you start to get a sense of what about you is the environment and what about you is you.
When I was a twenty-year-old creative writing major, it made sense for me to love Morrissey -- albeit, even then, in a somewhat self-consciously nostalgic, wet-behind-the-ears sort of way. (It was, after all, not that long ago objectively speaking.) But it was always me who loved him, and that knowledge is the kind of thing I now think is precious. Which knowledge? That this, is just, who I am.
If you know anything about Morrissey you know that this is maybe his chief quality: being exactly who he is, this being a melodramatic individual who teeters between pitiable and completely insufferable. But also! Also, well-read. Great with wordplay. With a totally unique voice. A presence. Some pretty snazzy dance moves. And -- and THIS is the kicker -- an actual sense of humor about himself.
I just love him, and love can forgive so many things. I don't mean any of this to say that now that I have reached the venerable age of 26 that I've decided to indulge all my flaws henceforth in service of Being Myself. That idea is pretty horrifying to me. What I do mean to say however, is that in the grand slalom race that is life, it is an excellent feeling to know at least what shape my skis are.
Why pamper life's complexities when the leather runs smooth on the passenger seat?
The song: The Smiths, "This Charming Man"; 1983