[DAY 30] 30-Day Song Challenge

Today’s theme is “a song that reminds you of yourself”. But I’m gonna cheat and make my own category. Similar to one we’ve already done, really. But different enough.

Leaving town tomorrow, but I’ll be back on the 17th/18th.

So how about…

Day 30: A Song to Kickstart Vacation

What would you choose? And I promise to catch up with replies upon my return. Y’all have been wonderful, and I’ve missed you.

[DAY 28] 30-Day Song Challenge

Day 28: A Song By An Artist Whose Voice You Love

What the hell kind of question is this? Obviously, I only listen to music by artists whose voices I loathe. Pfft. Who listens to music they enjoy? Fucking peasants, that’s who.

Seriously. This one is stupid.

Instead, how about a song I recently Shazammed because I thought it was lovely and I’d never heard it before. And its fucking beautiful.

“Still” by Niall Horan.

Your turn.

[DAY 27] 30-Day Song Challenge

Day 27: A Song That Breaks Your Heart

Yet again, I feel as though this is something we’ve (sorta) been over. Day 10’s theme was to find a song that makes you sad. While I understand the myriad differences between sadness and heartbreak, they are often conflated. Especially when we consider them as themes for songs. Heartache has created a vast pool of songs from which to choose, as no one is immune to it. Well, aside from sociopaths and such, but that’s not what this is about. Today’s theme makes me want to go back and choose something else for sadness, something that is sad but not pertaining to heartbreak. Ah well. Let’s see what I can come up with.

This first one will come across as extremely counterintuitive. But it is heartbreaking to listen to when the sentiments are absent from one’s life. For a time, Patty Griffin’s “Heavenly Day” broke my heart and brought me to chest-heaving sobs. It’s beautiful and full of love and hope and brightness. And yet the ache. It’s hard to listen to, even now, because of the memories it hearkens to mind.

Then there’s Lord Huron’s “The Night We Met”. This one is a no-brainer.

This post wouldn’t be complete without “Ain’t No Sunshine” by the inimitable Bill Withers.

For a bit of variety, here’s “Don’t Speak”, by No Doubt.

Adele is one of the current reigning queens of the brokenhearted. So, of course, here’s “Someone Like You”.

I can only handle Mariah Carey in small doses, but damn does she nail it with “We Belong Together”.

Let’s draw this to a close. I’m adding in The Rolling Stones with “Wild Horses”. I know it’s blasphemous to say, but I find the stones incredibly overrated. This, however, is a magnificent song.

What are some songs that you find heartbreaking?

[DAY 23] 30-Day Song Challenge

Day 23: A Song You Think Everybody Should Listen To

I’m a big fan of music. If it hasn’t already become abundantly clear. So I think everyone should be listening to music. But a particular song everyone should listen to? Hmm. That’s a toughie. As usual.

I wanna do “Hallelujah”, Jeff Buckley’s version, but that would be cheating. I’ve already used that song. Damnit.

You know what? I’m gonna pick Led Zeppelin’s “Hot Dog”, because fuck it. I love the shit out of that song, and it’s actually one of my favorites of theirs. Maybe the favorite of theirs. Yes, I’m serious. And everybody should listen to it.

What say you?

[DAY 20] 30-Day Song Challenge

Have I yet mentioned how redundant some of the prompts are? Some of the prompts are redundant. There, now I definitely have. Today’s feels like one of those, as though it’s something I’ve already covered, just under a slightly different prompt. I have no idea what to even select here. None. I’m coming in blind. (That’s what she said?) So let’s see what happens.

Day 20: A Song That Has Many Meanings To You

This first one came to mind and probably seems a bizarre selection at first glance. “You Are My Sunshine” is a bright, happy, positive love song. Right? Yes. But it’s also a song about fear. The fear of loss. The fear of darkness. The fear of abandonment. This is Christina Perri’s version of the oft-covered classic.

The next one is “Hurt”, and I actually prefer Johnny Cash’s cover. That’s no shade to the original NIN version, which I also love. There’s just something particularly powerful about the Johnny Cash cover. This song definitely has multiple personal meanings for me. Listen to the lyrics and see which path it takes you down.

I’ll throw one more at ya. “Tearing at the Seams” by Nathaniel Rateliff & The Night Sweats. Y’all, I really love them. And this particular album? I’ve listened to on repeat so much that I know the lyrics to every song. As with a few others of theirs, this song has more than one meaning for me.

What songs have multiple meanings for you?

[DAY 16] 30-Day Song Challenge

Married Boss: Are we still on for tonight?

Married Employee: Of course, sweetie. I’ll be ready when you are.

Married Boss: I can’t wait.

Married Employee: I just need to pick up my dress.

Married Boss: I can’t wait to see you in it.

I have an interview in three hours. Elsewhere, obviously. Should go great. We know of each other, professionally, and have worked with the same people at different times. If it results in an offer, cross your fingers that the money is right. This area pays abysmally low. The only remaining good thing about my current position is the pay. The aforementioned Hush Money. It’s not wonderful on a national scale, but it’s fucking stellar on a local scale. Fingers crossed?

Okay. Music time.

Day 16: A Song that’s a Classic Favorite

Some of these feel redundant. I’ve used “classics” for other themes. But “classic” is a relative term, anyway, isn’t it? Bleh. A classic favorite. As in a favorite that’s considered a classic? Or a classic favorite in the sense of “Of fucking course that’s one of your favorites.” Let’s go with a “classic song”. From my perspective, anyway.

I fucking love this song. Ever since watching American Beauty when it came out, I’ve associated this song with that film. But I still love it on its own merits, with or without the movie (which I also love). (There I go abusing that word again.)

Enjoy.

Share yours?

[DAY 14] 30-Day Song Challenge

Day 14: A Song You’d Love to be Played at Your Wedding

I eloped. There were no songs, aside from the wind and the birds and some distant wind chimes and traffic, perhaps. If I were to get remarried? Hmm. I dunno. I don’t really know that I’d want the ceremony overshadowed by someone else’s words. Perhaps there’s a song out there that would change my mind, or a person. But for the ceremony itself, my inclination is no music. Or something delicate and instrumental.

Now, if I were ever to have some sort of after-party/reception? Sure, there would be music. I have no idea what it would be. Probably some Leon Bridges or some John Legend. So I’m sure I’ll throw some shit like that down for you to listen to.

But, I’ve had Billy Idol in my head all day. From the moment I previewed today’s theme.

Next up, Leon Bridges. I do confess I’d love to have someone feel like this about me. I once shared this song with The Chef (someone I haven’t yet told you about), during a brief but intensely heady love affair (not the cheating kind). He wasn’t the one. But, for a moment in time, I thought he could be.

Can’t possibly have a list of (relatively recent) love songs without including John Legend, though this song makes me cry. And ache. I’d also love to have someone (mutually) feel like this about me.

Surely you know me well enough by now to expect a little of the incomparable Al Green. If not, you haven’t been paying attention.

This song by The Turtles would be mandatory.

As would this classic Stevie Wonder song.

The list would be blasphemously incomplete without a dose of Marvin Gaye.

I adore this song. It makes me cry. And long.

OHMYGOD, The Proclaimers! Of course! Another mandatory selection!

I’ll end on an Adam Sandler song. I love the hell out of it.

What would you add to the list?

If I Were Bipolar

If I were bipolar, I bet I’d be a rapid cycler.

If I were bipolar, I bet I’d exit a two-month depression and launch right into an extended mixed episode.

If I were bipolar, I bet I’d make some dangerous decisions that would, ya know, put me in danger.

If I were bipolar, I bet I’d justify said dangerous decisions with shit like, “this is just what it looks like to live after stifling yourself for the better part of thirty-seven years.”

If I were bipolar, I bet I’d recover from heartbreak by meeting up with a never-ending string of dudes who give less than a shit about me.

If I were bipolar, I bet I’d only find pleasure in the kind of job that makes me pull my hair out.

If I were bipolar, I bet I’d leave that job on some random Tuesday night, meet up with some stranger, and stay up until 4 AM.

If I were bipolar, I bet I’d return to work the next day and alternate between bouncing off the walls and wanting to shoot myself in the face.

It’s a good thing I’m not bipolar.

The Ubiquitous 2016 Wrap-Up / Navel-Gazing New Year’s Post

The ‘net runs rampant with posts about how 2016 is the most terrible year ever to be had. No, not the years of the Bubonic Plague outbreaks. Not the years of the Holocaust. Not the years of Genghis Khan’s hordes. It was 2016: the year we lost certain celebrities, the year of yet more unfortunate film adaptations and remakes, and then the year Trump became President Elect of the United States. Tragic? The latter, for sure. The former happens all the time. It’s called life. Sucks, yeah. Any loss of life is tragic for the individual and his families. But come on. The loss of my dear Leonard Cohen and isn’t enough for me to call 2016 the worst year on record.

Fine, I glossed over the Trump bit. That was intentional. I don’t wanna talk politics, but if you wanna know how I feel about him, specifically – I’ll just say – fuck that guy. And not in a fun – I wanna do you all night long kinda way. But with like a mile long, herpes-infested cucumber-up-the-ass kinda way. That opinion has nothing to do with politics, by the way. (Okay, that’s not 100% true.) But it tends to spring forth from a woman when a man tries to grab her by the pussy because he’s a slimy-ass rich celebrity who thinks he can get away with it, because he can. And is my little STD-ridden cucumber fantasy hypocritical? Yes, I’m aware. That is all.

~

So. That’s the Internet’s 2016. My 2016 was far less focused on celebrities, and actually far less focused on Trump that my little rantlet makes it sound. A couple of Very Important People encouraged me about how well I’d done this past year, not to mention all the encouragement I received here from the WordPress fam. But the thing is, the saying, “I’m my own worst critic” is an adage for a reason. Upon reflection, I’m thinking they were right. It was messy (isn’t life supposed to be?), but I did make progress. Sure I want it to happen faster, cleaner…Right. Fucking. Now. But that’s not how shit goes down. In my typical random fashion, here’s some shit that did go down in my 2016.

Divorce – Yep. Let’s get that one out of the way. Surprised? “Regulars” probably are. Thing is, I was separated for somewhere between 4 and 5 years. But he refused divorce, and I didn’t pursue legal channels to enforce it. So I was stuck. In so many ways, I was stuck. 2016 was the year I finally asserted myself, broke the toxic patterns that had ended our marriage and stood up for myself. It took roughly five years, but it’s now official. Now…one never marries intending for things to go down that way. We’d been a couple since I was fifteen. But if things do go sour (and they did), it’s fucking toxic to be held in limbo for so long. With the support and urging of a couple of very strong and important friends, oh and some strong doses of anxiety meds, I finally asserted myself and ended that limbo.

Therapy – I finally caved and tried therapy, after at least twenty years of decrying it as a scam. I’ve tried talk therapy as well as meds, but with all that I had going on concurrently – in addition to limited financial means – I haven’t found the right combination yet. But. I do intend to try this out again. I’m still taking Lexapro, at least until my refills from Louisiana run out (soon), and I have a handful of Xanax left. But I haven’t been able to afford new doctors yet. Hopefully, I’ll be able to get that sorted soon. So 2016 was the year I finally really began addressing my mental health.

Masturdating and Social Interaction – Along with my therapy, I also pushed myself to move beyond my boundaries. At least a bit. I took myself out to a couple of movies (Deadpool, yeah! And something with Bill Murray, because Bill Murray!). I took myself to a concert. I took myself to a poetry slam (which I haven’t told y’all about!). I took myself to Happy Hour (more than once). And I even took coworkers up on invitations a few times. I mean, this chick drank IN PUBLIC. She did not dance. She did not karaoke. (How many times does she have to say HARD LIMIT for people to get it?) But how she laughed. Oh how she laughed. 2016 was the year Stephanie hid a little less.

Quitting a Toxic – But Solid – Job & Moving Across Country – For the town I lived in, I had it made at my job. Aside from Queen Bitch, that is. But the direction things were moving in the last month or so would have had me in a new department under a brand new director with a brand new title and brand new salary. Yeah. There was no pressure at all at work. They didn’t beg me to stay or make my decision increasingly harder and more panicky each and every day. No. Not a chance. (I hope your sarcasm detectors are on and working.) Point is: Stephanie took shittons of Xanax in the last month and especially in the last two weeks in Louisiana. I met with a brand new therapist on the proverbial eve of my departure, and after an extended session, he agreed with all of my decisions. Except: he disapproved of the job I intended to accept in Oregon. It would have sapped me of my all and left me wrung out and an even greater emotional danger to myself than I already was. In the end, I agreed with him (though I had a tough time with the decision), but that has me still unemployed at the moment. I have made the move, though, and I’ve been in the Greater Portland Area since September. Newsflash: I Fucking Love Oregon. And, as yet, I have no regrets. 2016 was the year I gambled everything, turned my back on “everything I’ve ever known,” and risked staid stability to chase a dream in spite of everyone breathing down my neck what a fool I was. And I’m damn fucking proud I did.

Dispensary – Fucking right. I visited a dispensary for the first time. I’m in Oregon, dudes. What did you expect? So yeah, I got a J and a lollipot. I still have half the j left. (I may have a piss test in my near future. Yeah. Even in Oregon.) And I’m totally having the lolli if I land the job. Or at least part of the lolli, in celebration. Hm. Or maybe the other half of the j. Oh yeah! Pretty sure I’m gonna smoke it up with someone over Skype. I’ll toke over here. He’ll toke over there. It’ll be neato. Except I’ll have to find somewhere to do it, because of my “roommates.” Yeah. Remind me to tell you about them. I’m in a…weird situation. But one I’m grateful for. It’s just…fucking weird and uncomfortable sometimes. A lot of times. Anyway. Yeah. Old Stephanie never would have been brave enough to just stroll into one of those places, even though I’d have smoked whatever my friends brought out of there. I don’t see why people still think it’s such a big fucking deal. I’ve been smoking pot since…11 or so and I turned out. I still wouldn’t have gone in there. 2016 Stephanie? Dispensary-bound!

~

There’s probably more shit. I mean, it was a whole fucking year. But I need to get my shit ready for tomorrow. I don’t have a real job yet, but I do have a little side gig in the afternoons. Tutoring some kids on algebra and science. It’s not much, but at least it’s something for now.

I don’t do resolutions, so I ain’t making promises about writing. But when I come back, I’ll maybe tell ya about Oregon stuff. Oh! Oh! And I’ll leave you with a lovely piccy taken right here in Oregon, this very day.

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Accidental Penis: A Counter Stain

Stupid Fucking WordPress

My dear Peopleaneous –

1. I’ve been swamped. With work shit. With house shit. With flood shit. With car shit. With recruiter shit. With personal shit.

2. Most of my downtime is at work (one of the reasons I detest my job). So that’s when I tend to do my writing and catch up on comments and posts and such. But it appears as though something has changed with WP. Either that, or corporate is toying with their security policies again. Yous see, they block a myriad of sites. Like…Kotaku or Instagram or Redtube. But you can spend your entire day on Facebook or Twitter or CollegeFootball.com (welcome to the South) should you wish. But now. NOW. Since sometime early last week, I’ve been able to get to my dashboard or whatever. And it appears I can make a post. But only in the HTML section. Not in the “Visual” section. And when I try to check comments or look at other sites? I receive this message:

Secure Connection Failed

The connection to the server was reset while the page was loading.

The page you are trying to view cannot be shown because the authenticity
of the received data could not be verified.

Please contact the website owners to inform them of this problem.

Isn’t that delightful? I’m trying to find a workaround, y’all, because this is a buncha pigshit.

Also…if this even publishes (because I can’t even preview) – in the meantime, love and harmony and music and wombats illicit things.

Word.