There is a fine line between brokenhearted love songs and scary restraining order stalkerdom.
This morning I was idling away my ever-shortening lifespan in gridlock traffic listening to Adele on the radio. The longer I listened to the words, the more terrified I became.
If you or I, for example, called up an ex and said, “I know you’re married and I wish you all the best, but just so you know, as far I’m concerned it’s not over and I’ll be popping up everywhere you go like your office, outside your house,” I think we could rationally expect a visit by our friendly neighborhood police constable.
Not that there isn’t a time and place for break up music.
Just the other day The Cure’s “Pictures of you” came on the radio.
My son looked on in preteen embarrassed anguish as I went from smiling, to weeping to incoherent with anger.
It was only due to his interference that I did not ring up the boy who broke my heart in high school and let him know in no uncertain terms what a right bastard he was.
My poor father had to suffer through at least a month of Leonard Cohen and The Cure as a result of that relationship. It came to a shuddering end when my father eventually cracked and threatened to break the cd into tiny bite sized chucks or kill the obviously mentally impaired ex so that we all could all get on with our lives.
My heartbreak didn’t last long and the guitarist was soon replaced by an Eastern European crooner who would arrive with massive bouquets of odd numbers of roses. This behaviour was explained away as being the result of some belief from the old country that even numbers of flowers were bad luck.
He lasted about as long as a New York minute, as my bank balance did not quite cover his largesse nor in my youthful arrogance did I regard his career prospects as stellar.
With the clarity of aged induced hindsight, should my daughter ever date a prospective plumber, I shall encourage to hold onto him or at least remain on friendly terms. A tame plumber is not to be sneezed at.
I think I listened to some wonderfully affirming Offspring tunes around this time like “Why don’t you get a job” and “Self esteem”.
It is perfectly acceptable to indulge in some broken-hearted sniveling along with an accompanying soundtrack. However, releasing an entire cd devoted to your personal experiences of being dumped a la Taylor Swift is definitely not on.
Sweet, sweet Taylor Swift. Honey bunch, it’s not them, it’s you. It is most definitely and unequivocally you. No-one gets dumped that quickly and by so many different men unless you are the problem variable in the equation.
Break up songs should be life affirming, screw you and the horse you rode in on type of music. It should not be a defining factor in a court case as to your mental competence or lack thereof.
The Husband informs me that his break up song of choice was Leonard Cohen’s ‘Chelsea Hotel’.
Now that’s a good one.
I also highly recommend this brilliant playlist from Pop Insomniacs.