The Last Five S…

Sam and Jake before their first kiss in Sixteen Candles.

Last Five Playlist Link

The Last Five Songs

So, I’ve been sitting at my desk and staring at the blinking cursor for, oooh…four months now waiting for that divine inspiration to hit me for my next book. I listen to music all the time, and I used it a ton in writing my first book. Music gets into my head and takes me to another place like nothing else can. No one can go there with me because I’m alone where I go, lost in my thoughts and memories. Now, now, I may have inspired a smidge of eye rolling from you on that last comment. No, I’m not some deeply profound, reeking of stale smoke and patchouli, sitting in a dark corner being pensive, poet/writer, but admittedly I do have my moments. I don’t smoke, but occasionally, I’ll light a candle. So, I wondered, what do the last five songs I listened to reveal about me?

When I’m writing, I need that lovey-dovey feeling every now and then since I’m usually listening to one of my two children, both boys, telling me how bored or hungry they are. I need to seek out my happy place, so I go to music. This past weekend the weather was glorious. The first real perfect days of spring. I wasn’t going to even attempt writing, but I’m always thinking about my next story. I did yard work (which I love) and strapped in my ear buds and decided to go there and nobody was going with me. I was going to weed my garden in my own little world while love songs were sung only to me.

I listened to my Valentine’s Day playlist on Spotify. The first song played was “If You Were Here,” by The Thompson Twins . If you were born in the eighties, you know this song. If you don’t know the song, well, you should. It brings up the image of one of the most perfect men (in my mind)–Jake Ryan from Sixteen Candles. Oh, Jake Ryan. I pined for him. I lusted for him. Hell, I think I still do. Not only was he picture perfect–tall, dark, and handsome–but he was sweet, he was rich, drove a Porsche, and I’m pretty sure he smelled great, too.

In real life, I think most girls can identify with being that girl in high school that wanted some boy that she knew was unattainable. Jake Ryan represented the possibility that it could happen. The guy you never thought you could get one day takes notice and decides that he wants you and only you. Ah swoon. We’ve seen examples of this in many different stories and one most recent is of course, Jake in the Twilight movies. Hot guy wants recluse, shy girl. I never got my Jake Ryan in high school, but this song creates the feeling of possibility–hope. Even though I’m long out of high school, it’s that feeling that I love. Sigh.

Song two, “Everybody Talks,” by the Neon Trees. “Hey honey you could be my drug, you could be my new prescription…”, who wouldn’t want to hear someone say this to them? I know I would. This is more of an upbeat song with a quick tempo. What I get from the lyrics is the singer thinks people talk to much. He likes a girl, but she’s playing hard to get. This is one thing as a girl I had a hard time mastering, if I ever mastered it at all. I probably would have had a much more successful dating life if I’d played harder to get. Oh well, that ship has sailed.

“She Loves Me,” by Stephen Duffy was song three. And we return to another John Hughes movie, Some Kind of Wonderful. This song happens when Watts, a tom boy, and Keith, her dorky best friend, both from lower working class families, kiss for the first time. Watts offers to teach Keith how to kiss, OR more to the point, to see if he knows how to “deliver a kiss that kills” to the one and only Amanda Jones, with whom, by some miracle, Keith managed to land a date. Amanda is popular and beautiful yet she’s from the lower class like Keith and Watts. Amanda is the unattainable in this movie. So, when Keith and Watts kiss, it’s the first moment when Watts realizes that she digs Keith and when an idea is implanted in Keith’s mind about Watts. Seriously, I love everything about this movie. Two odd balls from school end up rising above all the popular, rich kids that were always pricks. And, in the end, Watts gets the diamond earrings (and the boy) that were originally intended for Miss Amanda Jones. Then, Keith and Watts live happily ever after. Yep, warm and fuzzy inside just thinking about it.

“Black,” by Pearl Jam was song four. God, I love this song…like love. Eddie Vedder’s voice is unique in that he sounds just as good live as he does in a recording. His voice is pure gold. This song in particular just creates such vividly imagery. It makes me think of a guy sitting and thinking about a love that is gone. He looks around and everything he sees reminds him of her, and now that she’s gone, he’s tortured. “I know you’ll be the sun in somebody else’s sky….”. I’m not sure if this has ever happened to me because I feel like I got shafted by my fair share of guys, but to think that I could have left a guy tortured by no longer being with me, I don’t know, it makes me feel good knowing that I could have made someone else feel this way. I may be a shit in saying this out loud, but damn it, it’s the truth. Misery loves company, right?

And five was “All I Want,” by Kodaline. This is a newer song that I stumbled upon, actually I think my sister called me one day and told me that I had to add this song to my book’s playlist. After one listen, I was hooked and listened to this song on a loop more times that I’d like to admit. This song is about a guy who misses someone. He wants to see her one more time at his door, and then he could die a happy man. “When you said your last good bye, I died a little bit inside….If you loved me, why’d you leave me?” Boy, can I identify with this song. Again, for years I just wanted to find somebody that couldn’t live without me. Many times I thought I’d found the right guy, but I was left in misery wondering exactly what was quoted above. If they loved me, then why’d they leave me?

They took things from me and it changed me. No, this isn’t some boo hoo story about how mistreated I was. But, after all the failed relationships, was it for better or worse? Looking back, I can only say it was for the better. Everything those assholes–and yes many of them were–did to me, molded me and formed me into the woman that I’ve become. They taught me what I should expect from someone else and how I deserve to be treated. Unfortunately, I got lots of examples of what I didn’t want.

Some of you may disagree with my interpretations of these song, but that’s the beauty of music. You get what you want from the song, and it can be unique to everyone. And of course, eventually I did find him–my one. I’m not pretending to be someone else when I’m with him, which is what I realized later was what I was doing with some of these other guys. With him, I’m me. I’m not perfect and neither is he. These songs make me realize that when you search for Jake Ryan, Keith, or whomever it is that works for you, you’re searching for your image of perfect and there simply is no such thing. Jake Ryan burped and farted just like every other man I’m sure. He was probably a prick at times and who knows, maybe he picked his nose and ate his boogers. I’m flawed and so is my husband and it’s those flaws that make us perfect. I’m not longer chasing a dream but living one.

So I ask you, what are your five? Five songs, five books, five movies, five whatever, what do they say about you? You don’t have to go into as much detail as I did, unless you want to. I’d love to know because I love learning what makes people tick. Talk to me and tell me your five.

Leave a reply here or find me on Facebook at Emerson Shaw Author or on Twitter @shawemerson.

2 thoughts on “The Last Five S…

  1. 5Fav songs. Un Skinny Bop. Bret Michaels. It just gets me Going. Love him. Scream by Usher. Sexy Song. She will be loved by Adam Levine- Maroon 5. Im hoping for Love. Plus Adam. So sexy. Run Away Baby Bruno Mars. Jazzy Song. Raise Your Glass by Pink. Love Her


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