My first love

His name was Gavin and he was beautiful. The British accent, the romantic curls around his face, those abs … c’mon! No teen girl could resist, certainly not me.

You should know that you’re reading a blog written by a now-woman who, my freshman year, had Gavin’s cover on Rolling Stone in the front of my binder. This deliciousness greeted me at the beginning of every class. And if that wasn’t enough, my bedroom was plastered — PLASTERED! — with pictures of him.

Of course, what better way to worship at the altar of Gavin than to listen to his band constantly? My parents probably know the lyrics to every song off 16 Stone and Razorblade Suitcase better than anyone else in their mid-40s because they heard me play those albums on repeat so many times.

I still love that music. The most recent albums … meh. They’re OK. Gavin freely admits that he writes entirely different songs these days. Problem is, he tries to make sense and be poetic — emphasis on ‘tries.’ That was the joy of those first two albums, they were incoherent mumblings, but they worked.

Bush was the first concert I ever went to and it will likely always be my most memorable. I remember the date (June 16), but the year is a little iffy (I’m 85 percent sure it was 1996). I was 13 or 14 and went with my then-uncle, who encouraged me to fight through the mosh pit to get to the front of the crowd. Being short worked to my advantage as I navigated up there and, sure enough, by the time the second opener (Veruca Salt) finished their set, I had my hand gripped tightly on the bar.

A few songs in, I officially had a “front row” view. There were a few feet between me and the band. That was my only focus, but I should have paid attention to all the crowd-surfers; they were the ones who kicked me in the head while trying to make it back to the ground. They’d kick me so hard, my head would — *wham!* — hit the guardrail separating me from the security guards. Over. And over. And over.

The show was amazing, despite my broken nose and split lip. So amazing, I couldn’t bring myself to go to a Bush show in Portland a few weeks ago because I worried it would taint the initial memory of them.

I apologize for this all being so long-winded, but Bush and I … we have a history. So, on that note, enjoy some oldies, but (I think) goodies:

Living room dance party

Don’t be jealous. I just happen to live with the best singers/dancers in Eugene — possibly in the state, likely on the West Coast. Their names are Alexis and Kaya and they are singing and dancing machines.

We recently instituted a new pre-bedtime ritual at my house called “Living Room Dance Party.” I know you probably couldn’t figure it out from its name, so let me explain: we have a dance party in the living room. Not to just any music, mind you. It’s difficult to have a dance party while listening to some of the indie bands I prefer and I refuse to expose my girls to what passes for popular “music” these days, so we’ve had to come to a compromise.

We settled on this:

And this:

And this:

Please don’t judge me.

The song you least expected

I had to hit the “Pause” button on my blog writing lately because of a new schedule I’m still getting accustomed to (transitioning from vampire hours to normal hours is difficult!).

After my past couple posts, I’m sure you expect me to post something indie, something poppy, something … completely the opposite of John Denver.

Let me explain: I’ve never really listened to anything substantial of Denver’s. Sure, I know “Sunshine on My Shoulders,” “Country Roads” and all those other songs of his you can’t escape, but this is the only song of his I’ve listened to willingly.

My grandma passed away on Nov. 1, 2003. I spent the week before her memorial scanning pictures and editing a video for her service, but my grandfather chose the songs. For hours on end, I’d sit staring at my grandmother at all different stages in her life — when she was an infant, when she was a teenager, when she was a mother, when she was a grandmother — with this song playing. Those images and thisĀ  song are forever tied together in my memory.