For Christmas, my sister made copies of some CDs we'd listened to as children. Actually in my childhood they were on vinyl and while I would have preferred to find them again on vinyl, since I no longer have decks or a record collection, CDs will have to do. Since I uploaded them to my ITunes yesterday, I've been listening to Really Rosie on repeat. There is something haunting about listening to the songs from your childhood.
The strangeness of it has sucked me in to the point where I've hardly noticed the crumbling of my life outside of work. I wonder if it's the short-livedness of having a life outside of my job (I know, not a word) that makes its demise so easy to take. Or perhaps it's Nilsson's words from "Me and My Arrow," off the Point which makes it bearable... "And if we make up, just to break up, I'll carry on. Oh yes, I will" The lines are thrown into a song about Oblio and his dog Arrow and in the context of the story of the Point, they make no sense. It's a little aside that Nilsson threw in, perhaps for himself or as a slight jab to an ex girlfriend. Who knows. The lines poked out at me today when I was listening.
My parents were hippies. It's probably obvious by their selection in children's music. Although my kindergarten teacher was also a hippie because she made us sing "Chicken Soup with Rice," nearly every morning. In fact, it was this song which brought me great comfort in kindergarten. I already knew the song from listening to it in my playroom. Since I couldn't use scissors and I was painfully shy and already labeled as slow, the song was one thing that allowed me to feel OK about the transition from home to school. I knew the song and the other kids did not. It's as if Carole King had followed me to school to make everything all better.
And she's followed me to Austin. My sister burned the CD and I carried it around in my bag for months before finally uploading it yesterday. And then I was stuck with Carole and Rosie on Avenue P. And I couldn't leave. Not even when life and normalcy forced me from the house and into normal social conversations. I wanted to stay on Avenue P. I wanted to hear the crackle of the vinyl as it echoed off my messy playroom walls. I wanted to feel the cold of the unfinished concrete basement floor. I wanted to smell the dried play doh on the table. I wanted to grab my toy tambourine and put on my mother's heels and sing at the top of my lungs. "I'm a star from afar. Off the golden coast. Beat the drum! Make that toast! To Rosie the Most!" I wanted to see if I could figure out where it all went wrong. I wanted to know if Carole King remembered what I forgot. I wanted to see if she could make it all better again.