I’m not as pretty as I was

“And you be the Captain, and I’ll be no-one” Kasey chambers, The Captain

The longest relationship I’ve ever had lasted 5 years. Well, actually, a little over 5 years. It’s with out a doubt the relationship that’s taught me the most, so I remember it well.

“Well I have handed all my efforts in, I searched here for my second wind”

It was her birthday a couple of weeks ago and I sent her an email wishing her all the best. We usually exchange emails about 2-3 times a year and birthdays are always one of those times. It got me thinking… could I remember what I gave her on any of the birthdays we were together? I could not.

“I’ve kicked myself at times because I’ve lied”

I didn’t give up, these last two weeks I kept on thinking… and a few came to mind. The last year we were together I was living abroad and I sent her a foot-long panoramic photograph. I remember the picture, she was standing pretty along a ridge that overlooked the craters of two volcanoes to her left and right. I think she liked it… Then I remembered that our first year together I gave her a reproduction of the first page of a British paper covering the fall of the Berlin Wall (a time in history I knew she particularly liked). I think she liked that as well… Finally, the last one I could remember was a fancy hour-long couple’s massage at a spa. I liked that…

“So I will have to learn to stand my ground. I’ll tell ’em I won’t be around”

So I’m happy I was able to remember 3 out of the 5, even though the massage got me thinking that I kind of mailed that one in and that I could’ve come up with something better. She was a great girl and I have absolutely no regrets of spending 5 years of my life with her. Our relationship should have ended 1 or 2 years before because we seemed to have different expectations, but we had a lot of fun and, as I mentioned at the beginning of the post, the relationship taught me a lot.

“And if I tread upon your feet, you just say so”

That was not the relationship I wanted, but it taught me what I want out of one. When I look back I always think it was time well spent, 5 years was a bargain when I think about what I took from the experience. Plus I met a great person, from a nice family, that I still keep in touch with today. I don’t remember the fights, the struggle of being long distance (3 out of the 5 years) or the periodic discussions on “where is this going?” whenever it came up that I might go off to work abroad. I remember the good stuff. We traveled to more than a dozen countries, shared a ton of laughs, made friends in common and enjoyed seeing each other become something better than what we were when we first met (at least in her case). There are only a few people I get really excited when I hear something great has happened to them, she is one of them.

“Did I forget to thank you for the ride”

This song is for her. Well, actually it’s for me, to remind me of her. I really like this song, but she loves it (or perhaps loved, who knows). She once told me that she listened to it occasionally when she missed me. I honestly don’t miss being with her, but I’ll take a page out of her playbook and use it to remember her… that I like doing.

“I tend to feel as though I owe one to you”

 

The doctor wants to give me more injections

“Connection, I just can’t make no connection.” The Rolling Stones, Connection

Today I woke up to news that an old professor of mine has become the favorite to lead a fairly large political party in Europe. The move would be part of the party’s rejuvenation process after a poor performance in the recent EU parliamentary elections. It might not happen, but it brought back memories of his class which was one of the best I took back in college. At the time he seemed to have a pretty promising career and at the personal level he was a pretty bright guy, with a good sense of humor and great social skills. He could teach too.

“My bags they get a very close inspection. I wonder why it is… that they suspect ’em

It’s not that I had forgotten about that class, or the teacher, until this morning, but what I had forgotten that he had a blog! He shut it down soon after my class with him ended, but I remembered checking it out a few times back then. It wasn’t a blog about politics, just a kind of personal blog where he posted interesting articles, book recommendations and, as you might have guessed, music he liked. I liked that.

“They’re dying to add me to their collection, and I don’t knooooow if they’ll let me gooooo”

The year was 2008 and Martin Scorsese’s documentary Shine a Light (mentioned in a previous post) had just come out. My friends and I were a bit disappointed by the film, but 2 hours of listening to The Rolling Stones is never a bad choice so it we still enjoyed it overall. The problem was that it wasn’t The Last Waltz, it wasn’t No Direction Home and that it would even later pale in comparison to his next documentary about George Harrison (which I loved).

“Everything is going in the wrong direction”

Weeks after seeing the film, during the semester I was taking the class in question, I went on to the teacher’s blog and was surprised to find an entry linking to a live performance of Connection, a Rolling Stone’s song I really like. The next day after class I caught up with him during a break, or after class, and couldn’t help but mention his blog. He kind of laughed it off saying something like “Oh yeah, the blog. I like posting things every now and then”. But I didn’t really give a fuck about the blog, I wanted to know why he’d posted Connection. So I followed up with a mystical comment along the lines of “So Connection…”

“But all I want to doooo, is to get back to youuuu.”

So we got down to music…. and he admitted to being a Keith Richards fan but not that big on the Stones, poor ignorant… (well, probably not poor and definitely not ignorant). He told me he’d been to see Shine a Light, had also thought it wasn’t great but had enjoyed revisiting a few songs he hadn’t heard in a while, such as Connection. With that answer he passed my test. He posted a few other songs before closing the blog which were completely atrocious, but I decided to give him a pass solely on Connection. I hope he gets chosen to lead the party, partly because back then he seemed to have the chops to make for a good political leader, but mostly because there was a point in his life he decided to post Connection on a shitty blog. That, I respect.