While making a playlist/cd for tonight's party (Libby and I are cohosting a New Year's party at her place) I thought back to all the strange places I've been in the past 365 days, and the music that has been the soundtrack to those travels and travails.
Turns out it's not quite what I would expect.
Here are the songs I've played the most on my laptop
New Slang by the Shins. Not sure it's going to change my life, but it sure got played a lot.
Changes--Tupac. I guess it's fitting that in a year filled with changes, this became a semi-anthem
HOVA--Jay Z. What can I say, when do you not want to hear the live version of HOVA. Never.
Forgot about Dre--Eminem. Apparently I did not forget about Dre. In fact I remembered him a lot.
Popular Mechanics f0r Lovers--Beulah. This song was on repeat throughout August. It's fucking inspired.
Raise Up--Petey Pablo. This is part of my pregame psych up mix, so it got a lot of play. Plus I captained a team named Raze...so you have to figure I played this twice or three times before every game we played. Like I said, a lot.
July, July--The Decemberists. Just as PMFL was August's soundtrack, this song was September's. All day, nearly everyday. Great song, strange, Neutral Milk Hotely. Worth a listen.
Yeah--Lil Jon and Usher. Um, yeah, I listened to this a lot. Usually involved me gesticulating around my kitchen in some strange new variation on Tom Cruise's Risky Business dance. Needless to say I'm glad people don't walk by too often. Yikes.
Jesus Walks--Kanye West. Part of the psych up cd. After watching Jarhead I couldn't get enough of this song. The opening 8 notes or so are like musical crack. As familar as the bum bum from Law and Order.
Down to the River to Pray--Allison Krause. A new favorite. A late bloomer, it became a huge part of November's music for me. Wonderous.
Such Great Heights--Postal Service. This song defines my time in Seattle. So it's with mixed feelings that I think about it. I cannot hear it without thinking of the Spaceneedle, and sadly, without thinking of Jen. I recently realized that it's again song that I enjoy listening to. For a while it was like picking at a scab, not that that stopped me. But now it's back to a good song that makes me think of the good times in Seattle, and with Jen....but without me feeling bad about my life now. I guess that's part of the lesson of this year.
I finish this year on a much stronger mental footing (strange image, I know) than last year, and certainly than a lot of this year. I'm happy with work, I have amazing friends, and I'm enjoying dating Jesseca. In fact it's going really quite well. Do I sometimes have miss things with Jen--or at least have bitter sweet thoughts.? Of course. Do I sometimes miss Seattle, or have those same bitter sweet thoughts (ie, it's so beautiful...but oh, right, it's also rainy and dark)? Yes. Do I miss DAPAC? Fuck no. I realized just how fortunate I am upon my return to DC. I was planning on Metroing home but earlier in the day got an email from Paul asking if I'd like a ride. I replied quickly and affirmatively. Right after I landed I got a phone call from Liz. "We're outside, have you landed?"
Liz: "Sure, we all came."
Paul, Liz and Libby had all come to pick me up at the airport. My friends. Nearly enough to make me weep. I'm a fortunate man. This year made me wonder about my luck and worth a few times. But in the end, I leave it feeling more confident and loved than ever before. Not too shabby.