Album of a Year

Soundtracking twelve months in LA

October 1, 2015. I have a reservation at JFK (or was it LGA?) and a one-way ticket to Los Angeles, no U-turns. I am 29, single for the first time in a long time, freelancing. I have never lived alone. I have never lived anywhere but New York. These are the songs that drowned all of that out ^ in the year that followed.

October

“This Year,” The Mountain Goats

Months before the move, this song sends me to PsychologyToday.com to find a therapist and when I’m all fixed up — fixed up enough — it drives me to the airport. It checks me into the Airbnb on Laveta Terrace and sleeps at the foot of my renta-bed. I am gonna make it/ through this year/ if it kills me on repeat. I text the video to my dad, a guitar player, “Can you learn the chords before Christmas?” (I don’t see my parents for Christmas.)

Only three months left in the calendar year and I can make it, right? I have my doubts. But now, walking down Sunset Boulevard for the first time, all sweaty earbuds and miniature next to home-dotted hills and flamingo-legged trees, now: I’m finally here and I’m thinking every time I breathe there’s a little more Los Angeles in my lungs and so far that’s a good thing and I bet I won’t stop breathing yet — not until 2016, at the very least.

“90210,” The Courtneys

Leaking nervous energy from the tailpipe of a car that doesn’t belong to me and please, no open flames. The people I’m with have Potential and I want them to like me but it’s eleven a.m. on a Saturday and I’m salty and sober and just so freaking new, some brassy-ass bone-clean penny, no grime in my grooves yet. But California doesn’t care, won’t humor my anxiety. The mountains won’t allow it. The skunked air won’t allow it. We’re driving to the track to bet on horses; the windows are down and my skin and nerves are almost blue when here comes “90210” to untie the knots in my chest. I Shazam it from the backseat, covert; there’s something uncool about that. You’re really, actually here and it’s fine, I notice; there’s something cool about that. Thirty minutes later, inching toward Santa Anita Park, I announce to the car that I feel like a teenager! — which is my favorite feeling, at twenty-nine I mean, it was hard the first time. But today the sky is infinity and the clouds are cotton and this all feels easy. Good.

“Let It Happen,” Tame Impala

I watch the first democratic primary debate at The Lost Knight with a New York friend who invites me on an overnight trip to Vegas the next day. There we go. I get to DJ the car ride, “have you heard this yet?” Let it happen: a summer song I carried into fall, carried for ~3,000 miles. I love how it sounds like three songs in one, and how just when you think it’s about to end, it keeps on. The perfect anything is an anything with no end. My friend hasn’t heard the song yet so between errand two and three I play it on the rental car Bluetooth and tell him to listen close, he’ll like it. He actually does, and he actually does; I’m pleased. I’m so used to men showing me things, me never getting a turn, having to insist on it. It’s like, I have things too, you know.

“Crap Kraft Dinner,” Hot Chip

Riding shotgun through the desert. Sky is black save for come-and-go cracks of lightning that strike sideways in the rearview mirror, what is that? Never saw a horizontal lightning before. Hours earlier I was playing Michael Jackson slots at some hotel casino, I don’t remember which, but a suit gave me a periwinkle points card to use every time I don’t go back, what is that? The Bellagio? Probably not. Anyway, we left Vegas at three on empty stomachs and now the roads have no lines and “Crap Kraft Dinner” is on the radio, by radio I mean iPhone, and I perk up at All you can hear is my refusal/ Cos I haven’t got time for a jerk-off loser — it’s so not true, I don’t relate, I always find the time for a jerk-off loser but in the dark I can pretend otherwise.

Was it the Venetian, maybe?

“Dangerous,” Big Data featuring Joywave

I am living in the spare bedroom of two Airbnb strangers and it’s beige and bleak, a return to college and I don’t feel comfortable using the kitchen. I spend a lot of time headphone walking through the neighborhood to escape it. This is a walking song and also, an I’m not as fragile as my texts may suggest song. Because I need one of those, apparently. I’m on the hook, I mean the horn, I’m on the request line: this one goes out to the one I like. Caller, what would you like to say to that special someone? I’m strong as this bassline; I’m a bad liar.

“Fuck and Run,” Liz Phair

Rejected, feeling dumb and blind but not deaf. I’ve heard this one before.

I start going to karaoke, Thursdays at The Lost Knight, and I’m sure this is my song until I learn that it’s everyone’s song. I’m not angry about it, just… it belongs to all of us. It’s sad, really.


November

“September Gurls,” Big Star

I’m a September Gurl so why do I feel like a December Boy? It’s fucking November.

“Ready for the Weekend,” Calvin Harris

Airbnb in the rearview. I move into my first studio while the paint’s still wet, Luis keeping me company. He’s something like a super and he’s finishing the job, my home, so we dance around each other in the kitchen. I don’t own a chair or a bed so the counter’s the only place for my laptop; he’s taking window measurements and asks me if I’m famous. He recognizes me, he says. I am thinner than usual from all the headphone walking and the sweat and I’m wearing the type of outfit I imagine famous people wear when they’re so famous they don’t care about looking good. Starbucks-run meets Post-Pilates. On sale. I play “Ready for the Weekend” as Luis installs outlet covers because I want him to think I have plans three days from now.

“Flesh without Blood,” Grimes

Heading home from The Holloway, buds in ears before the bartender can close my tab. It’s a 4:25 song and I live three minutes away and I’ve been singing aloud lately. I was timid at first but louder now, loud enough for strangers to hear; it’s all by design. It’s like look, this is who I am right now, k? I’m feeling a lot and if you think I’m going to blink, dial it back because we made eye contact, you probably don’t understand people who sing in public. We don’t care — or we do, too much maybe, but not about what you might think.

“Changed the Locks,” Lucinda Williams

Helen on The Affair is drinking a midday bottle of wine and singing country music in her underwear and eating edibles and I am looking into a crystal ball. I mimic her movements, a talent show routine, and que unique! My life, choreographed. I learn all the words and add it to my To-Sing karaoke list but I soon learn it’s always we don’t have that and besides, who are we kidding, I’ve never had to change the locks.

“How Do I Know,” Here We Go Magic

Some days are a thousand dangling carrots. I make a playlist called “Thirst Queen” and listen to it, phone sewn to hand. Dance around the apartment on one foot, Manic Normal-Sized Alone Girl, trying to summon up the right vibration. Vibrate.

“One Day,” Sharon Van Etten

I make another playlist, six tracks, “A Certain Person.” It’s about the length of a shower but sometimes I play it twice. The drought, I know.

“The Great Defector,” Bell X1

Occasionally I decide to feel good and this is my feel-good song. On feel-good days I run errands on foot, romanced by how little I know this neighborhood. How exciting it was to learn, for example, that the grocery store is Mormon-owned and closed on Sundays and that the closest Mexican restaurant puts movie theater cheese on their nachos. So some discoveries like that and then I walk to Echo Park Lake. It’s so blue-green and I love the fountains and the idea of renting a pedal boat, charging toward the center, sparking a joint, sparking a book. Unrelated but last week the cashier at Goodwill told me when the lake was renovated, the city found like… at least twenty dead bodies at the bottom. I haven’t Wikipedia’d that yet but I will.


December

“Johnny and Mary,” Robert Palmer

It is LA cold and I don’t know what to wear or what to… what. I just don’t know. I am thinking Seasonal Affective Disorder or just depressed? And then, what difference does that make? To my left: Johnny trying to find certainty, Mary counting walls. She should be used to it. Shouldn’t she?

“Operator [That’s Not the Way It Feels],” Jim Croce

I live three doors down from a wine bar with a decent record collection. You Don’t Mess Around With Jim on repeat and I can’t concentrate on what my friend is saying, or maybe I’m here alone. I order the album from my phone, think back to a few months before the move when a tango of breakup emotions and moving emotions stomped around on my chest; I was floor-ridden and I was doing it to myself, recycling “Operator” like an exorcism prayer til my eyes were raisins. Then I took my meds and got in the shower, I was scheduled to read at an ice cream social.

“Mix Tape,” Brand New

A friend gets us last-minute tickets to the one-year anniversary of Taking Back Tuesday at the Echoplex. Emo night. We had an emo night in New York, but I don’t think Mark Hoppus ever DJed there. I don’t think Dashboard ever played a set there, either. I feel like a teenager.

My friend and I get separated after thirty minutes and I am screaming at the top of my lungs, moshing in a sea of ear gauges. One of the DJs plays “Mix Tape” and the crowd chants it back, pointing at the stage like we’re at a real concert. It feels like a real concert. It feels like the morning after this one house party I went to eleven years ago, that morning was yellow and this band boy, the one I’d spooned with all night, his car was yellow, and he offered me a ride home and that tasted like yellow, too. So we got in the car and “Mix Tape” began to play, so quiet and unassuming, and the first line gave me hope because my hair was knotted and my clothes were loose and I was anything but made-up. It’s okay to fall in love with me, I telepathed to boy yellow, because I’ll never get too cool.

I don’t see my friend for the rest of the night, but all these black heart-hair emo kids, is it possible to feel alone for a second? From so far away I film Chris Carrabba singing “Hands Down” — acoustic — and I send A Bad Text with the video and some innocent commentary attached and I walk home alone beneath the graffitied underpass and up the piss-soaked stairs that make Glendale and Sunset kiss and I peel off the clothes and the beer and the salt and my phone is silent and I have kept my promise to boy yellow, at least.

“Range Life,” Pavement

Holloway again. The bar is empty, just me and Jukebox, who’s talking bout a range life. I’m like yeah, sounds nice, but if that’s what you want you should just go for it, you know? So tired of people getting in their own way, I’m exhausted, put me to bed for a thousand years; my hypocrisy will look stunning once we add this hindsight filter.

“Sink to the Bottom” by Fountains of Wayne

I am spending a lot of time alone. I don’t know to be worried yet. I order crafts online and call it growth. Crochet thread and adult coloring books; I don’t know how to use the former, don’t have the skill for the latter. “Look at this shit,” I show my friend a half-complete Stark direwolf. “Isn’t coloring supposed to help with anxiety? And be… fun?” friend gentle-reminders me. “I’m not fucking good at it,” I say.

I buy an X-acto knife and a cutting mat and start to write a breakup zine, manic about it, the writing is done in two days but I get scared off when it’s art time, I’m not fucking good at it. I put the zine away and open up Garage Band, record myself singing an Alex Winston song, “I Don’t Care About Anything.” Add some echoes and warbles and twelve recordings later, I’ve manipulated 70% of the flaws out of my voice. Post it on soundcloud, tweet it. Then I record myself singing “Sink to the Bottom” a cappella. Post that nowhere.* Cars on the highway, planes in the air / Everyone else is going somewhere / But I’m going nowhere, getting there too / I might as well just / sink down with you.

Has there ever been a less attractive drowning partner?

*I do post a video of myself singing “Loud Places” by Jamie xx. It was a long night.

“San Francisco Days,” Chris Isaak

The Affair again. This time, a scene where Helen and Noah are, I don’t know, remembering who they are? Remembering each other? I’ve been watching a lot of TV. Some days I don’t even leave bed, there’s so much to watch. What do they call that?

“Giants,” Bear Hands

It’s hard to fall in love when you don’t leave the house but that’s what memories are for? I am nostalgic for seventeen previous versions of myself and whoever used to text them.

“California Stars,” Billy Bragg & Wilco

One morning I wake up with no idea where I am. How I got there. I was in my bed it turns out, but how did it get here? To California, I mean? How did I move here, and rent an apartment, and cook meatloaf for dinner last week… did I really do all of that? It felt impossible (you’re not capable) then scary (you could lose all of this any second, and it’ll be solely your fault) and then empowerin…g (you did this, you idiot, the bed is here because of you, everything in this apartment is here because of you, a grip: get one).

I listen to a lot of songs about California for confirmation that it exists and I am in it. I walk around the apartment touching furniture, humming “California Stars” instead of going outside and looking at them, blowing out my hair in case someone calls. Sometimes they do.

“Reach Out of the Darkness,” Friend & Lover

My friend V. introduces me to her friend A., who’s on extended leave from New York. Her Silver Lake Airbnb has a firepit and she has a dog and I end up spending a lot of time at her place. We talk about vaginal health a lot — tips, tricks, scares, scars. Usually while wearing sheet masks. Is there anything better than women? Sometimes I need reminding.

A. hosts a dinner party on Christmas, makes a YouTube playlist of Santa bloopers that plays silently against a Spotify playlist of disco. After dinner a Soul Train line forms on her deck and I don’t remember the last time I felt like dancing, it feels like the first time actually, my emotions are lying to me but it’s Christmas so I let it slide.


January

“Cigarettes and Chocolate Milk,” Rufus Wainwright

I hit peak bath. For Christmas, my mom sends me bubbles and a neck pillow. My dad sends me a bath bomb kit. These are just a couple of my cravings. I stop drinking wine every time I take a bath, too expensive. Too drunk. I stop finding excuses to draw a bath, stop waiting for nightfall. I take them when I want to continue watching TV, but not in bed. Or because I want to do something, but I have nothing. Killing time as self-care. So please be kind, if I’m a mess.

“Golden Years,” David Bowie

A friend from New York comes to town for the Oscars. Her uncle is nominated for a handful of awards so I take an Uber to — what was it? Sherman Oaks? — to watch the show with her family. I bring a gold dress to change into in case he wins. My friend’s mom is here, too, she’s a born Californian and thrilled that I love it here. That’s the weird thing — I do love it here and I loved it instantly and all of this laying around, this moping: it’s me. Not California, not the move. It’s just me.

Uncle wins almost every nomination and glasses are clinking, we’re shouting at the TV like it’s football season (but then again, wasn’t it?). There’s like… twenty of us. It feels good to be with a family. We all change and then the plans change and we end up five minutes away, in a private room at some sprawling wine bar. My phone tells me David Bowie has died and I don’t know what to do with that. I cry in the Uber home. Golden tears. The next night I go dancing at the Short Stop, gravestone-stomping, call it a tribute.


February

“Still In Love Song,” The Stills

I always get halfway through this song before realizing I have no idea who the hell I’m singing about. It could be like, five different people.

“Space Age Love Song,” A Flock of Seagulls

I find a fan video on YouTube that looks like it’s cut from a 1980s Target commercial except Jennifer Connelly is in it (?) and someone pulls a gun on her at the end(?), so probably not a Target commercial(?). In the video, Jennifer is rollerskating through a closed Target(?) store and some lovestruck dude in a red jumpsuit is skating around with her, entranced and I’m wondering, should I learn to skate? What about lip injections?

“Ride On / Right On,” Phosphorescent

A shift. Suddenly, I like the length of my hair. I want to dance, even if it’s not Christmas, even when no one has died. The trickling freelance faucet turns flood. I can’t take another second of the three-inch commute from Bed to Desk so I find a new office called The Semi-Tropic. It’s behind my house, on Glendale. I order the chicken tamale with tomatillo sauce and the unlimited mimosa special, $20 if you order before five p.m. and I always do. I am drinking tons of mimosas but I am out of the house and I am working, ride on.

I stop at the Semi-Tropic for brunch one weekend to kill time before a friend’s play and D, my server, asks if I want one mimosa, or many. I wanted one but… why not many? And D gives me a high-five, tells me the staff loves when I come in because I always do my own thing — my own thing, drinking a lot of mimosas alone — and I’m flattered because yeah, that’s one way of looking at it.


March

“The Golden Path,” Chemical Brothers

I am writing fictions and going to readings and buying zines; the vibe of LA in March, with AWP screeching through town, reminds me of the New York I don’t miss. Sometimes I forget the lit scene is a thing, that I like LA because “the scene” is at least a thirty minute drive from wherever you happen to be, is it even worth it? Here, when I write, it feels like a choice; here, I can dip my toe in, no diving. I am well-suited for this. I prefer eyelids at half-mast, please don’t pay too much attention to me, just enough so I can eat.

My anxiety medication is running low so I start to see a psychiatrist and through my telling of bed and bath tales we figure out I’ve accumulated some other issues. I tell her that the way I wear depression is much wilder than watching all twelve seasons of Grey’s Anatomy in the window of a month. It’s leopard print. Doctor’s telling me something else, though, like maybe sometimes it’s leopard print but other times it’s like Doug Funnie’s closet? Everything sorta looks the same? One day blends into the next thirty? And I’m like yeah, everything feels like a carb — the bad kind — what’s flavor and when was the last time I ate chicken? So we start a new medication and it’s working and I’m on The Golden Path.


April

“iT,” Christine and the Queens

I hear this song at the end of a Girls episode, which I watch on my laptop using someone else’s HBOGo credentials. I think it’s the one where [spoiler] Jessa and Adam decide they’re going all in, because the first hundred times I listen to iT I hear, “I’ve got it/ And I’m in now.” I want to go on stage and announce to the men in the room, known and unknown, that I have Going In running through my veins and so I add it on my To-Sing karaoke list; shocked when I Google the lyrics because And I’m in now is actually I’m a man now. It’s a song about power, not love. It’s about going all in, just… with yourself. I still like the song but I want it to mean something else, like the kind of holding hands that’s actually two barely-touching fingers, the kind of holding hands that takes up an entire sidewalk and spills into the street maybe. But it doesn’t mean that so I cross it off the list; it’s out of my range anyway.

“Super Rich Kids,” Frank Ocean

My train is railed. I am working non-stop. The freelance checks I’ve been earning since winter come out of hibernation, sit stupidly in my mailbox like they were there the entire time. I launch my tincture line on a Tuesday night from a booth at Semi-Tropic and take home two bottles of champagne to celebrate. Not that night. Weeks later, a rainy Friday afternoon, LA oddities. D comes over to drink with me, teaches me how to pop a cork.

“Primitive (The Way I Treat You),” Ambulance LTD

I get breakfast with some new friends, which turns into running errands at the Galleria, which turns into the three of us bleaching my hair at 4 p.m. on a Sunday. “I feel like doing something crazy today,” someone had said that morning, not me, but this is what we landed on. I used to work in hair salons, years of vicarious botch-jobs under my belt, so I don’t love the idea of DIY bleach usually, except today. Today I just feel like doing something Bad. Maybe I’ll bleach my hair and look like trash, I think, aroused. Maybe I’ll feel more like myself if I look like trash. I’ve seen it happen.

“Are You Really on Drugs?”, The Clean

V. moves down the street and for the first time since meeting, we have the same work schedule: flexible-to-nonexistent, depending on the day, on how you define “schedule.” So we go to the lake and read, and to Mohawk Bend for happy hour, and she plays The Clean for a bunch of us one stoney night and I Shazam it right out in the open and I don’t know, is this a turning point?

“Groove Is in the Heart/California Girls,” Crocodiles

I cat-sit for a friend on the west side, move into her place for a few days. I make plans with everyone I know out there because we live in different countries, almost. I wander around Santa Monica trying to guess at which bar would be my bar; I text my east side friends the way I used to text my college boyfriend over Thanksgiving break. I miss you. Don’t forget me. I get to thinking about my alternate LA timeline, the one where I didn’t move to Echo Park and had never heard of emo night or Semi-Tropic, a timeline on which the beach is my backyard, where would I be? Who?

I go to the beach exactly once this week, for about five minutes. Instagram a picture of the palms, caption: Tuesday. This is California, to a lot of people. This is California to me, even, for the length of a cigarette.


May

“No Waves,” FIDLAR

A month of sunrises. I know what Sunset Boulevard looks like at 5 a.m., naked and shy with her back turned to me. These karaoke nights keep turning into something that closely resembles morning and I know it’s late, but I’ve got one song left in me. Mayday, mayday. I’m sleeping on patios again and early morning Uber drivers overlook last night’s clothes and makeup all polite like, “Going to work miss?” But it’s okay, I tell myself, because I’ve got this piggy bank full of Fridays when We used to turn the lights out at ten, and then the Saturdays when W did a 180; it was just Me then. Those months, there was no Lights Out because there were no lights on, so whatever. It’s okay, I’ve been saving up for this.


June

“Everyone’s In Love With You,” David Byrne

I get a job, vote Bernie, get my first bikini wax. Men from past lives and this one somehow reach the consensus that June is homing season — pheromones maybe? was it the wax? — and they make cameos. So what, my heart is a timeshare now? I’m booked, I want to say. You should really come back in November, or some other cold month.

I don’t say that, of course. I make a bed. I make breakfast. I make phone calls to friends, “You’ll never believe…” Surprised when I have to do it more than once.

They don’t arrive empty-handed, these men on their stopovers. They return to me fossilized chunks of heart I’d long given up on, a hundred single socks tossed into garbage cans. I’m like what, this old thing? I’m like what, is this a paperweight or something? I don’t recognize it. (I do.) I accept their parting gifts, anything less would be rude, but when the men begin to pull on their shoes and flash me their familiar backs — I can’t help myself! — I’m like, are you interested in leftovers? This is too much for one person. Just take some of me for the road; I reheat nicely.

“Anenome,” The Brian Jonestown Massacre

Things between me and my apartment are… different. I just woke up this morning and realized I don’t love you anymore, I tell the chipped paint in the bathtub. But that’s not exactly true. With summer came the signs. You can’t love anything when it’s 90 degrees indoors. So the heat broke me. Then a broken fridge. Then a roach invasion. There are four months left in my lease when I decide to break it. I tally up the infractions, contact management, and, after a friend-turned-neighbor’s referral, pay first month and security on a Los Feliz bungalow without having ever been inside. I don’t tell anyone that last part, though, because I know it’s the kind of decision that gets me in trouble, that told-you-so decision and really, it’s no one’s business anyway.


July

I am in San Francisco. Then New York. Then Barcelona. Then Leucate. Then Paris. Then New York again. Dancing happened, and music, but we are talking about Los Angeles right now.


August

“Going to Georgia,” The Mountain Goats

I tiptoe back into Los Angeles after a month of travel like, will you still have me? There is doubt; I’m wondering if I carved out enough space before I left. I’m wondering: roots, or leaves? How long does it take to forget someone? The age old question. But the longer I’m here, the more real it becomes. I become. This is where I live and this is also my home. The most remarkable thing about coming home to you/ Is the feeling of being in motion again.

“Anything You Want,” Spoon

I move into the bungalow and experience the This Is Mine feeling for the second time in twelve months. This Is Mine is second only to Teenager in my Feelings Index. It’s good. I start listening to Spoon again, remember sophomore year O.C. binges and the concert at Central Park last summer, cartons of wine on oversized rocks, that feeling of knowing all the words (←adds to Index). I remember all the things that happened to me before here happened to me.

The trick to knowing what’s mine: knowing who’s me. Who is the person to whom these things belong? For a while there I lost the thread, the surname of a one night stand (~2006). But I come home to LA and I move into my blank canvas and paint it with furniture and altars; I catch-up with people I love. In motion again but better than before, somehow. I take fewer marathon baths and buy flowers for the coffee table and I even stay home on karaoke night, sometimes. And I listen to Spoon.

I am alone and not screaming.


September

“Hey Jealousy,” Gin Blossoms

I turn thirty on the wooden floor of a storybook cottage, tucked somewhere off Lyric Avenue. My arms are folded across my chest. My friends kneel in a circle formation, touching me, four fingers per person in the lift position and light as a feather, stiff as a board. I wait for the magic and when it doesn’t come, I assist: suspend gravity, unclench my jaw and I’m moving skyward. My legs are higher than my head is higher than my torso but for a time (two seconds? three seconds?), I’m floating. It’s not like I imagined but it’s perfect. You can’t just lay around waiting for something to happen, you know? You have to be an active participant. You have to exert your will.

The next day I have a pool party and try not to think about my body. The day after that, me and my friend S. — who flew in from New York for the occasion — pick up a rental car in Beverly Hills. A yellow convertible Mustang. Back in college S. drove a yellow hardtop Jeep so our rental is a little kismet, a little throwback. Summer 2003 she used to drive us — among other places — to Westchester Community College, where we took a course in Oceanography that changed our lives. Top down and Dunkin’ Donuts ice coffee and veggie cream-cheese on toasted wheat three times a week. I think we were listening to a lot of Sublime back then, definitely some Pepper. We both got As.

Today S. wants to listen to 90s rock, like Pearl Jam Breeders Jays of Clay type stuff. Me too. I put on a playlist and we scream our hangovers away and realize we don’t know the words to “Runaway Train” and sing a particularly heartfelt rendition of “Hey Jealousy.” I film us. I am next to my best friend of twelve years, sweat staining black leather, let the cops chase us around. We are on our way to the desert.

We stay in a solar-and-shit powered trailer in Joshua Tree, one night only. A fat orange moon peeks out from the horizon and it looks like the sun showed up hours early for a party. I see the Milky Way, satellites, Jupiter, probably. S. Googles “The 23 Questions I Ask Everybody I Meet In Order To Decide If I Can Really Love Them” by Chuck Klosterman and reads it aloud. “Let’s see if our answers are different than they were in college,” she says, except neither of us can remember what our answers were in college. But I’m impressed by the way this exercise explains the longevity of our friendship, by how quickly we know what we want to say. We know who’s we.

“Drink To Me Babe, Then,” A.C. Newman

I mostly listen to this song alone, and only recently. No vignettes, no anecdotes. I just heard it earlier this month, in the middle of writing this, and knew it’d be my ~fin~ song. So:

When I have a proven track record of favoring yellow convertible songs over raisin-eyed songs;

When a bath unequivocally means relaxation and not escapism;

When going in on myself sounds as pretty as hand-holding;

When I hang a “no vacancies” sign on my heart (and mean it, red blinking lights, the works);

When I know leaving Los Angeles doesn’t mean losing Los Angeles;

When I’m light as a feather;

When I cop to the omissions and fill in the blanks and name the names; when I feed a ten to a jukebox at Good Luck Bar or someplace like it and look so many of you in the eye like “this one’s for you,” no blinking and no regrets;

Drink to me babe, then.


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