Today was my birthday. Good old 1/22. I turned 27 years old. Fuck. I'm 27 years old.
It's funny, I can think back on several instances over the past several years where I've met people that told me they were 27 years old. My internal reaction was usually one of, "Oh, wow. They're almost 30. I wonder what they're they doing with their life? What goals have they managed to accomplish? What goals are they actively pursuing? Isn't that when everything starts to fit together and make sense?"
Even during the past year, when I still viewed myself as in my "mid-twenties", I looked at people that were 27+ through the same eyes that 20 year old me saw them. It was as though being in your "late twenties" gave you some innate ability to hone in on that comfortable pattern of lifestyle, so you could just keep doing what you're doing and always be okay (whether financially, emotionally, or both). Once you hit that age, you would find yourself on a path that was, at the very least, well-defined. You were finally an adult, making adult decisions about careers and family and the future.
I feel very unsure about my future. I don't know what's going to happen with anything, really.
During the last few weeks, I've been digging myself this awful pit in my mind. I've been discouraged and frustrated and hurt and angry at everything and nothing... probably mostly with myself.
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After writing the post above, I found myself talking with an old friend this evening. I expressed a lot of the concerns and anxieties above. Somehow, he had the most amazing insight. While I'm still not sure where I'm going, or what I'm doing, I'm more excited to find out than I have been in a while.
I feel like everyone should be given this amazing, positive encouragement. So here you go.
"Life starts when it starts. Then it starts again. And again."
"Spoiler alert: You are a speck of sand on the beach of people that have felt lost, and felt they were drifting. But it's better to be drifting than anchored to a shit existence."
"You are still free to take any path that you wish. No, that isn't exciting considering the fact that you have no clue where you're heading or what you should do next, but you are free in a way that so many people are not. You can step in any direction."
"Don't ever fall for the concept that things have to be done in accordance to time markers. Your path will be its own, with its own timing and revelations."
"Don't fight this moment. Don't mourn this moment. Don't stress this moment. Embrace this moment. These themes are eternal."
"Welcome to the river of confusion. Just remember to keep swimming, love. You will not drown."
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Here's recommended listening. It may not be your cup of tea, but it sure as fuck is mine. And I'd be remiss were I to not share it with you. Please, give it a chance. And if you find my taste differs terribly from yours, let me know why. I'd love to find new music. The music I love is all I know, if that makes any sense.
This is Kate Mara in the movie HappyThankYouMorePlease.
She's singing "Sing Happy" a la Liza Minnelli. While I love Liza (and who doesn't?!), I like this arrangement so much more than the original. It seems to capture the melancholy that the original barely hinted at. The movie is awesome, too. It was written by Ted Mosby (I can't recall his real name) from How I Met Your Mother. He stars in it, too. And Buster Bluth has a good role, as well. Great flick. Great Song.
Here's some more Radiohead.
Yes, they're my favorite. Yes, I'm horribly cliche. Yes, it's all because my dad was addicted to them and we would listen, from album to album, all day on the weekends we spent together, just the two of us. This song is called No Surprises. It isn't one of their best songs, but the accompaniment is so poignant and yet so beautiful.
Have I ever told you that I love the shit out of some Björk? There are a handful of her songs that strike me. I think that the only reason I love the few that I do is because they're just so much fucking fun to sing. Here are my top three. In order, from most awesome to slightly less awesome.
(god damn, I LOVE singing this song. At the top of my lungs, half-crying, and belting as loud as I possibly can, while driving as fast as I can get away with. It's soul-changing... at least, it has been for me when I've needed it.)
Hyperballad (I love this one simply because I have images in my head that go along with the story told in the lyrics. Well, and it's so much fun to sing along with.) Hunter
(I used the youtube version that included lyrics, because I think this song has more meaning in the words than in how they're expressed musically.... Though the drum and the bass line are exceptional, and the strings are to die for.)
(This is the last Bjork song I'll send you. Again, Joga is by far the best as far as I'm concerned. But if you find yourself needing more Bjork, with the stellar percussion, and incredible strings, and belting vocals, here you go. This is so much fun to sing at the top of my lungs. While it's so much fun to sing, I think what I really love about this song is the juxtaposition between the strength in the lyrics and the uncertainty of the instrumentals.)
I know Bjork can be a bit intense, which is why I'm transitioning to a couple of my favorite Bo Burnham songs. This young punk was discovered by Comedy Central when he was 18 or some shit. He kept posting videos of his music on YouTube, and they eventually got him to do a special (called "Words, Words, Words). His newer special is easier to find online, but it isn't as awesome. I'm going to end this long-ass email (the first email of my 27th year on the planet, in case you're keeping a tally of unimportant information somewhere) by sharing a few of his songs. Some are hilarious. Some are brilliant. All of them have at least a bit of both aspects.
Art is Dead
(This is the song that caused me to track down the rest of Bo Burnham's work. I love the shit out of this song.)
From God's Perspective
This is one of the only two songs I really loved from his latest special. But I thought I'd share it, because it makes me laugh.
This is the encore type nonsense from his latest special
. I love it because it takes some crazy creativity and musical awareness to pull this shit off. Also, it reminds me of my brother Kyle. I've totally watched him dance like that (though he never wrote music, recorded dialogue, and choreographed shit to it). It should be said, this video, specifically, deserves actually being watched (as opposed to just listening to it).
And that's it for now. Thanks for giving me something to do during the tail end of my 27th birthday that made me feel productive and positive (even though it seems silly that this made me feel a spark of importance).
This post was written before I realized I had so much music to share. A lot of it has helped me simply feel better. Some of it is emotional. Some just makes me laugh. If you could use exposure to some new sounds, give it a chance. Even if you skip what I write, give the music a chance. All my love. -LLM