Of cats and stuff

One of my favourite songs at the moment is Say something by JT and Chris Stapleton. Another is Nowhere Fast by Eminem and Kehlani. I looked up the lyrics and noticed Google is kind of shortchanging sites like Az lyrics. I like it coz it’s purple and well laid out, used it for years. It was almost always at the top of search rankings.

But nowadays Google puts lyrics on its own home page, so you don’t have to click on the lyrics sites. I get that it’s about monopoly easy access, but I feel bad for all the sites that are losing traffic over this. My entire income model is based on helping businesses get more web traffic, so I feel kinda sad when the machine turns against them. It’s kind of like the twinge I feel when I search for mpesa rates and the first five hits are from a website that isn’t Safaricom.

#BiacharaNeBiachara

♫ But if at times my heart it seems like it’s in the wrong place ♫
♫ It’s probably ’cause it’s on my sleeve ♫

I’ve dated a lot of younger guys who were mama’s boys. It’s probably a Freudian thing, but that’s not really the point. I told one of them that I like Eminem. He said: ‘You like a guy who insults his mum?!?’ I said: ‘I don’t like that he does it … I just like how he does it.’

Because Marshall talks a lot of shit about a lot of stuff. Stuff he really shouldn’t be talking shit about. But the way he does it, Lord! I love a word-smart man, that’s all. And Marshall can play with my words anytime.

Sometimes I think I’d like to meet him. I think a man that plays with words like that must have a beautiful mind, and I’d like to get inside that head. It’s what draws me to a lot of the guys I end up with – their ability to turn a phrase. It shows a very specific kind of intelligence, and those smarts turn me way up. Of course they also tend to be mean-spirited and aloof, that’s the downside of their genius. That’s probably a Freudian thing as well.

I’m listening to music again. That’s good, I’m excited about that. I’m not all there yet, but music is a good sign. Also, I’m buying a freezer. For my cats. Because they eat a lot, and I don’t have a car yet, so I have to go to Gigiri every two weeks to get them frozen meat. With a freezer, I can go once a month and save 1K on uber. Yes, I’m bougie like that, and yes, I’m a cat lady.

Meet Tux, Arya, and Remi

I usually jav to Gigiri and uber back, because it’s hard carrying 20kg of cat mince in two matatus on opposite ends of the CBD. I recently discovered I can have the cat mince delivered by nduthi, but it still costs about a K, so either way, cutting down the trip to once a month saves me a lot. It also gives me extra space in my fridge, which is almost always full of cat food.

So I’m buying them a separate freezer. Because I can. And because I want to. It’s a lesson I’m learning of late. That I don’t always have to second-guess or justify my actions. Sometimes, I can just do shit because I can, and because I want to. It feels kinda nice. A form of self love I suppose.

When you have cyclic anxiety and depression, sometimes, life doesn’t seem like it’s worth living. And that sense of hopelessness is triggered by the tiniest things. A missed call that wasn’t returned. A bounced date that wasn’t rescheduled. A sharp look from the teenager. It’s scary how fast you go from, ‘Well, that wasn’t very nice,’ to ‘Maybe I should jump in front of that bus.’

It’s not a conscious mental progression. It’s reflex, automatic. It’s how the depressive brain is wired, and it’s something you have to live with, forever. Getting better isn’t about stopping the reflex, coz that never stops. Recovery is about spotting the thought, noticing it’s there … and choosing not to act on it. It’s a part of you. It’s a part of me, But it’s not a part we have to act out.

♫ Rumour has it ♫ Adele ♫

You mattered. Go safely Chester.

Chester Bennington. Photo by Tibor Bozi / Redux.
March 20th 1976 to July 20th 2017

Photograph by Tibor Bozi / Redux

If you live in Kenya and you feel like giving up, please don’t.

Call the Befrienders Kenya Suicide Prevention Hotline

on 0733​​​​​​​​​​​​​​736542304  or 0722178177.

https://www.befrienderskenya.org/suicide.html

♫ Battle symphony ♫ Linkin Park ♫

Songs that change my heart

My obsession with certain songs is nothing new. And I’ve always known my princess was good at music. But I didn’t know how sensitive she was to the nuances of music, the real spirit behind each song. Every once in a while, she will ask me to change a song because it’s sad and is upsetting her. Since I have gothic tendencies, a lot of the music I enjoy is dark and raw and angry. I’ve never given it much thought, so when she says to change the song, I argue based on the lyrics. She responds, ‘It’s not the words. The tune is sad. Please change it.’

At first I ignored the concept (even though I did change the song). But then this weekend, I was sitting with Mr. 3CB and a song came on that he loves. At first, I broke into a fit of giggles because the song sooooo unlike him. Then I asked him what he likes about the song. He said it’s happy.

I then enunciated every single lyric in the song, to prove to him just how un-happy it was. Because I’m mean like that I was genuinely curious. How could anyone describe that particular song as ‘happy’? When I was done with my vocal rendition, (yes, I can sing!) he paused for a beat, looked me right in the eye, and said, ‘Wow. You just ruined my childhood.’ Turns out he had never actually listened to the lyrics. He just liked that it was catchy and reminded him of a happy time in his life. Sigh.

MusicWorkShop-Image
And before you ask, yes, I did make up for ruining his childhood. Several times.

 

Anyway, one of my favourite songs is I’ll be by Ediwn McCain. I always assumed I’d heard the lyrics wrong, because they seemed deep to the point of gibberish. Recently, I looked them up and found they were just as accurate and puzzling as I imagined. For instance, what exactly does it mean to be love’s suicide? You will make her love kill itself? Meaning you will make her hate you? How interesting.  I admit though, the sound of the song is sad, and yes, I did have to change it.

Which brings me to this song, She’s so high by Tal Bachman. I first heard the song on Rick Dees. He said the lead singer/songwriter was now happily married, and that the song was about a girl in high school that he was too chicken to ask out. I wondered how his wife felt about this hit. She’s obviously way more secure than I am, coz I would have a major problem with my man pining over a woman all those years later.

Same concept, different artist. Sk8er Boy by Avril Lavigne. This time, the hazing is from the girlfriend of the boy whose worth you didn’t see. Except how does she – his girl – feel about this song? She obviously has heard the story, which is why she has the material for the song. Maybe I’m just more jealous than the average bear.

All said and done, I’m a hopeless romantic at heart. Which, I suppose, is why I like ♫ Sura Yako ♫. For a long time, all this song signified was Spellcast. I hadn’t even listened to the whole thing. But today, I bumped into this video and I’ve had the song on replay since. It has a happy sound, a catchy beat, and soulful lyrics. For that, I forgive it for being written by Sautisol.

♫ Sura yako ♫ Sautisol ♫

♫ Hide behind your walls… ♫

Every once in a while, I bump into a song that touches me deeply. I often make it my new ringtone, or play it non-stop for days. The songs range from heartbroken lamentations to odes of angst, and they move me for different reasons. This morning while walking to work, I bumped into this song, and it’s been on replay ever since.

♫ A crowded street can be a quiet place when you’re walking alone.

I don’t know why it struck me with such force. Maybe it’s because I’m at a place where everything is right, yet everything feels wrong. I have an awesome new job that I love. My baby is thriving as a girl scout. I have a chance with a boy that I adore. I’ve found a path that suits me beautifully. Yet I’m still moping around, and I can’t think why.

3 Doors Down has always been one of my favourite bands. I don’t know the members’ names, their story, or even their greatest hits. I just know I like a lot of their songs. This one speaks to me because I’m that exact moment, the moment where I’m afraid to try things because I don’t want to fail. But like the man says:

♫ If you’re afraid to fly, then I guess you never will.

Yesterday, I directed my first ever radio commercial. Most fun I’ve had in ages! Then I did something called an aura photograph, which told me my aura was orange. Apparently, people with orange auras are ‘creative, productive, adventurous, courageous, and relate to emotions.’ The photo came with a 23-page analysis, which veered between being uncannily accurate and immensely amusing.

I don’t consider myself adventurous. I describe myself as conservative and introverted. When I said this to the people in the photography room, they burst out laughing. Apparently, you don’t get to call yourself reserved when you have tattoos and purple hair. *shrug* Anyway, that’s the frame of mind I was in when I found my OCD song for today.

♫ Your mistakes do not define you now, they tell you who you’re not. ♫

My new boss gave us an assignment last week. He asked to find the answers to three questions – our passion, what things [the company can do to] make us happy, and what [skills] we bring to the table. The task was easy for me, because all three questions are answered everyday, in my mind, and on my blog.

One thing I’ve learned – and not for the first time  – is that sometimes, having everything you want doesn’t make you happy. Sometimes, simply being happy makes you happy. I don’t quite know how to do that yet, but I’m working on it. I’m definitely working on it.

It’s the only one you’ve got3 Doors Down

Only Marshall can make beauty out of violence

♫ Just gonna stand there and watch me burn ♫

♫ That’s alright because I like the way it hurts ♫

♫ Just gonna stand there and hear me cry ♫

♫ That’s alright because I love the way you lie ♫

I bumped into this song in a very interesting way. I was having a chat with a very special person, who just happens to be an ex Mr 3CB. We have the same taste in music, so he’s always sending me songs and stuff. Today, he sent me three suggestions. The second song was Beautiful from Relapse, and the third was a song about nonpoints and bullets which made me giggle for a really long time, though I’m still not sure why. I didn’t much like the Relapse song. Too much jazz. But I’ve been playing this one non-stop. The count is at 55.

At first, I wasn’t sure just what I liked. I’ve had the song on my iTunes for months, but I didn’t pay much attention. I mean really … Eminem featuring Rihanna? How now? I glanced at the song info and skipped it more than once. It took Sailor to make me sit up and listen, and only because he has good taste.

When I heard Rihanna whining in the beginning, I was like wtf? But then her voice dies off suddenly and I’m like hmm, this could be interesting. When the beat began, I thought, ‘Hmm, catchy’. Then I started to listen to the words and I was gone. First, it has Em’s trademark rhyming. I just love the way he uses enjambment. Or, maybe it was caesura.

[Disclaimer: I had to Google that one. I know the technique from Mr Murimi and Lit 101, but I couldn’t remember the terms. I suck at details.]

Enjambment is when you stop a sentence in poetry [or rap] partway, to create rhyme and rhythm. Caesura is when you do the same with sound. I think.

High off of love, drunk from my hate

♫ It’s like I’m huffing pain and I love it the more I suffer, I suffocate ♫

♫ And right before I’m about to drown, she resuscitates ♫

♫ me. She fucking hates me and I love it. Wait! ♫

Where you going? ‘I’m leaving you.’ No you ain’t

Come back we’re running right back. Here we go again.

I just love the way he rhymes words that don’t rhyme. I like the tricky word play and the little puns you have to scrutinize to get. Stuff like huffing pain[t].

Of course it helps that the subject is deep, and that it’s handled so uniquely. It helps a lot more that the instrumentals are so awesome. I did more than my fair share of air strings – or whatevere it is they’re using to get the basso profundo. Is that what it was called? That effect where there’s a constant droning bass line? It might have been basso ostinato, I forget.

Anyway, this song clearly moved me. I tweeted about it for well over an hour, and I’m still OCD-ing as we speak. There’s something magical about the way some songs grab me, shake me, and won’t let me go. I’m just a little concerned that lately, a large number are done by Eminem.

There’s a part 2 to this song and I hunted it down on Twitter. It’s not as good as the original, though Em’s verse is amazing, and the song has some pretty serious drums. I thought about it more, whether this is really love, this furious, angstious dependency. It’s powerful and unhealthy, but you can’t deny its passion. I don’t think I want a ‘love’ like that. It makes you feel alive, but it can kill you too.

Either way, I’d still like to buy Marshall tea and pick that brain of his. As long as he doesn’t go Mariah on me. I’m just saying.

Love the way you lie Eminem featuring Rihanna