Thursday, February 21, 2008


I woke up this morning with a song in my head. A song I haven't heard or thought about in a couple of years probably. It's strange how certain songs stick with us, or remind us of a certain person or place in our lives, and will always be associated with those memories. So here's a short list of some of those songs from my life...

"America" by Neil Diamond - Strange start to the list, huh? For some reason, one of my first childhood memories involves going with my mother to her aerobics class. Lots of middle-aged women in tights and legwarmers working out to this song. No idea why this has stuck with me for 25 years...

"Red Red Wine" by UB40 - Probably my father's favorite song when I was younger. It may yet be his favorite, but I hope his taste has evolved since then. If you ever have the (mis)fortune of seeing the tape from my bar mitzvah reception, you'll see me put on quite the karaoke style performance of this. Naturally, that tape doesn't come out much.

"Forever Young" by Alphaville - This is the song that popped into my head this morning. Takes me back to the nerd camp I'm sure I've referenced a few times before in this blog. Went there for four straight summers. Every week we'd have a dance with a consistent playlist that included Bizarre Love Triangle, Birdhouse in Your Soul, and always ended with Stairway to Heaven followed by American Pie. This song also reminds me of the first girl I ever really cared about, which was around 15 or 16 at camp.

"King of Wishful Thinking" by Go West - No, not because its Pretty Woman (b/c let's face it, I'm questionable enough already). Before CDs were the norm in everyone's house, my best friend in middle/high school and I used to make mixtapes basically just by recording the radio for an hour straight. Yeah, the quality sucked, and you had to try and hit pause just before the commercials started, but damn if we didn't rock out to a lot of Amy Grant, Paula Abdul, and Soul Asylum. Somehow this song always seemed to make it on the tape.

"One Week" by Barenaked Ladies - Everyone has that one band that they've seen in concert an inordinate number of times. For me, it's BNL. There was something about the infectious joy they had on stage, combined with their "extemporaneous" freestyle rap songs about whatever town they were in (always the same), that I loved in high school and college. When this song came out, same mixtape friend and I worked for hours to learn all the words to the fast rap section so we could impress people (girls). I've yet to meet a girl who was really impressed by this... oh well.

"#41" by Dave Matthews Band - In college, there was a girl who sang this as her solo with her a cappella group. I don't think we ever spoke more than 10 words to each other, but I must have seen her perform it 5 or 6 different times. There's something so alluring about talent on stage, we never had a date or a kiss, but I know I will remember that girl for the next 60 years.

"Oh L'amour" by Erasure - I like to think everyone has a guilty pleasure 80's song. I may have a lot more than one, but this one sticks out. Back in college, my friend Lauren and I used to go to 80s night at one of the local clubs almost weekly. This song always got us back out on the floor, no matter how tired, drunk, or late it may have been.

"Elegy for Amy" - Pat Mcgee Band - My first. Not the song that was playing my first time, but the song that for some reason reminds me of that relationship, of the long distance we tried to make work, and of the loss of my first "grown-up" relationship. She was always way more into punk rock, but this song would slow her down and bring her back.

"Insomniac" by Billy Pilgrim - I used to think this song was all about me and TLTL, but I've come to realize its really just about me. I think everyone has a song that they can truly identify with, and for some reason, this song just wraps me up and soothes whatever I need to let go.

"Mona Lisa" by Guster - Another song that puts me in my happy place. Doesn't matter if I'm driving, arguing, crying, or in bed with a girl, this song makes everything else around me right. Also ironically the song that was being performed when one of my best friends met his future wife for the first time in my presence. I guess its okay that I relate the song to two different parts of my life.

This is more or less chronological, and obviously, there are so many more. But if I was going to pull together a CD of the first 28 years of PRSlaveDC, this list would be hard to top.

Strange video, but since it triggered the post, I just had to include it...

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

A Baby Rat is Called a "Kitten"?

Things I learned at Pub Quiz tonight...

Yes, a baby rat is in fact called a kitten.

A baby shark is called a cub.

A baby dragonfly is called a "nymph" (yes, it was a whole category).

Christopher Columbus returned to Spain on the Pinta after the Santa Maria shipwrecked.

I may have been the only person in the bar who knew who Goran Ivanisevic is.

This is the flag of Panama.

And apparently David Bowie's wife Iman, once had hair.

Only finished 6 points out of the win though... so with my new knowledge, I'll be back for more...