Monday, January 4, 2010

10 Years

5 years is my favorite song by David Bowie. I love David Bowie, or I guess I should say, at one point in my life I loved David Bowie so fiercely it was an awesome power to yield, to be in possession of so much feeling. Now, I enjoy hearing him on the radio and put on Ziggy Stardust when I want something to hum. Maybe it's because I write about music but that level of insane passion has subsided for anything I've encountered recently. For anything, actually. I've mellowed out. My boyfriend still feels this way about his favorite bands that haven't changed since he was in high school and it baffles me. That level of dedication to one pursuit that still keeps inspiring such deep levels of comfort and desire.
Anyway, so it's taken me a couple days to digest this shit, but man, a decade has passed. This is the first decade I've lived through in which I was an adult, or adultish, from beginning to end. I came into this thing at 19 and I'm going out at 29. So much has happened in these past ten years it's almost mind boggling. One, the Strokes didn't exist, can you believe that? For some reason this is a crazy thought to me, how so? Haven't they always existed? Some things existed, I'm convinced before they actually arrived. Everything in music these past ten years rested so precariously on their existence they must, in some cosmic universe have been sitting in the slot like a pinball before they were born, ready to shoot out and bounce off the walls. They invented nothing, but brought everything back. And they brought it to the frat houses. Wild. In high school, in the 'oh so distant' 90's, I never thought in a million years a scratchy sound like that could play on the radio, because it was so vintage sounding. Nirvana sounded loose and wild and like an animal tearing out its lungs but it sounded NEW, the idea that anyone would try to replicate a 70's NY heroin addict nasal dissonance was crazy. Like I said, many people loved this kind of music and were dressing this way and making it already, but of them actually harboring the crazy idea that anybody outside their small sub genre or social circle would hear their music, that was unheard of. The Strokes were on fucking KROQ! The first time i heard it I had to pull over in my car it was that nuts to me. I mean I had stopped listening to KROQ in junior high because it became a playground for Limp Bizkit and other crapola. To hear something playing that I actually liked was bizarre and exciting.
To think back at being 19 I would never have guessed in a thousand years that I would be sitting here on the Internet, I started 2000 without a cell phone or an e-mail address- I quickly got both by the end of that year- in graduate school writing a novel. I remember sitting in the guidance councilors office at PCC in 2001 crying because she told me there was no way I was going to be able to transfer to Cal State LA without a math requirement and to me those were words of certain doom. I knew in my heart I could never pass that class and in that moment had resigned myself to giving up on college. Two years ago I voted for the first female presidential candidate. She lost to Barack Obama. I mean that speaks volumes from where we were all sitting on September 11 2001. I was a born again feminist having strayed from the flock of the free thinking as I entered my 20's. But I regained membership mid way through the decade, having accidently decided to take Ann Snitow's class on radical feminism. In a way my DUI was the best thing that happened to me. Loosing my license and the thought of not being able to party freely, at my whim and desire, was so frightening that I went back for one semester powered through those three credits got my Associates Degree and applied to colleges in NY. SO I COULD TAKE THE SUBWAY DRUNK AND NOT GET ARRESTED. I actually used getting into college as a way to get to NY. It was the only reason I knew my parents would allow giving me thousands of dollars to relocate. Actually enjoying or benefiting from college was the furthest thing from my mind. I applied to New School because it was in Manhattan and I wanted to live there. Little did I know I would only be able to afford Brooklyn at the time. I have always had the good luck of getting to the restaurant and getting seated right before everyone else arrives and theres a wait. A short year later I was trying to do laundry in my neighborhood and three idiots in silver American Apparel leotards were doing performance art by the coin machine.
Anyway, a decade is a strange thing to measure a life against. I am very happy today and feel blessed to be in LA with people that I love. Have a great next decade. I'll be clocking out at 39. I don't know what in the hell life will be like then, and I'm not even trying to guess.