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Going Back... if only in thought
29 November, 2002 :: 2:22 a.m.

Idea:  Time travel is indeed possible in the mind.  Scents and music are the two stimuli that are the most successful for triggering time travel.   By sitting and listening to an album that was very important to me during a particular time in my life, I can transport myself back to that time and remember the significance of each song.  

The album: Wish by The Cure

The time: Summer '95

I bought the album in '92 or '93, but I didn't listen to it much until '95 when I was going through an almost year long bout with serious depression.   I used the cd to lose myself in my own head and bathe in my misery...along with  other albums, mostly by The Cure, that I picked up but Wish was the album that pulled me in.  

Track One: "open" Images of Jeanine and Mike and Al and Chris come flooding in...especially Jeanine.   She dragged me to a party after work one night against my better judgment...mostly other people that worked with us at McDonald's but I just didn't feel social.   "I really don't know what I'm doing here/ I really think I should have gone to bed tonight"...that was exactly how I was feeling.   Instead I stayed and drank and kept feeling like I didn't fit in to any of the conversations going on and so I drank more.   And then I got to witness the disintegration (hah, reference to my other favorite Cure album) of Mike and Jeanine's relationship.   Mike was my best friend at work and Jeanine was the girl I had developed a huge crush on, so of course they got together...and I honestly was about as happy for them as I could be about anything at that point.   This jumps me over the 2nd song "High" right to track 3, "Apart."

Track 3:  "apart" just naturally jumped up as the song that fit for Mike and Jeanine even though they only dated a few months and didn't actually have time to develop a deep love or anything. Jeanine got sick of the fact that Mike drank a lot...what really pissed her off was that when he drank he would either disappear and no one would know where he was, or he would stick around and his temper would come out.  I saw him pull the stove out of the wall of his apartment and pitch it into the opposite wall one night while he was drunk and the night of the party I didn't want to be at I watched him load every single power band for the Soloflex machine onto it and do bench presses (can't remember exactly what that was equivalent to now, but do remember that it was a number that a lot of normal human beings couldn't ever hope to reach even working out regularly)...this was after he and Jeanine had gotten into their first argument of the night.  I then remember them disappearing for a while and then Jeanine ran out of the house crying and Mike came out and went back to drinking...I wanted to run after Jeanine, but Mike was eyeing me and I didn't need a drunk gorilla jumping on my back as I went down the steps.  So I waited a bit until Mike went upstairs and Jeanine slipped back in and I tried to drunkenly console her and tell her that things would all work out, and all that happy bullshit that people say to one another...so of course being drunk and falling to cliches my little talk didn't really make her feel better.  I think the song stuck because all Jeanine really wanted was for Mike to say, "hey I really like spending time with you and I'm not gonna drink and act like an ass anymore..." because when Mike was sober, he was a great guy.  And Mike just couldn't do that and couldn't promise it.  So Jeanine took me home, I passed out and woke 3 hours later to Fawn, one of the managers, asking me to come in and cover a shift...which I did and man did I feel great...

Track 4:  "from the edge of the deep green sea"...This song stirs memories of Al and Autumn and me driving around at night and just talking and listening to The Cure...going to Woodland Park and swinging underneath the stars, sometimes getting drunk and smoking (none of us were regular smokers then, only when we were drinking and with others). Autumn and her clove cigarettes. We had some good nights like that and it's too bad there will never be anymore.

Track 5: "wendy time" My very own Jeanine song. Shortly after Mike and Jeanine broke up, we started hanging out together more. We would just get together and talk and I think that she liked the fact that I listened to her, but I think she was also attracted to the guy who could be really funny and outgoing some days and really quiet and sad other days...she wanted to see what was inside my head. So we would get together and just talk for a while...But for some reason she wanted more than to just get together and talk, she wanted a relationship or something more than anything I was in the right frame of mind for. Jeanine saved my life...the time that we hung out and talked got me through the period of summer '95 when I had started thinking about suicide more than anything else...it was also when I started burning myself...I can't remember why but I was really upset one night walking home and flipping my zippo open and closed, open and closed and then I lit it, let it get real hot, put out the flame and pressed it into my forearm...the pain just instantly calmed me and got my mind out of the loop that it was stuck on...I was instantly hooked and started doing more and more of it. I guess maybe Jeanine just was attracted to guys who weren't good for her because Mike and his drinking weren't a good situation for her, and then me and my depression...basically in the end I took from Jeanine until I was okay and then pushed her away. We talked, I felt better--at least better to the point where I stopped thinking suicide was the answer--and then I stopped talking to her. That's why "wendy time" makes me think of her.

Track 6: "doing the unstuck"...this song just makes me smile because while I was really depressed I decided that this was the great suicide song. Al loved this song because he thought it was so happy. I remember talking about Wish one day and he brought up that song and how happy it was and I said, "Happy? That's a suicide song." Al argued with me and argued with me and I pointed out that a suicide song doesn't have to be all moody and depressing sounding...that if I were going to kill myself I would do it at the very end when Robert Smith says, "...perfect day to throw back your head and kiss it all good-bye." Al went home that night and listened to it and the next day said, "Thanks a lot, now I'm never going to be able to listen to that song the same way. It was my favorite and you ruined it for me." Why does it make me smile to think that I ruined Al's favorite song? I dunno...maybe I am an asshole.

I'm going to stop here because next is "friday i'm in love" which is not a song that I really care for much and while I have associations between other songs on this album and people I knew and the times we shared, I think this is enough for now.

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