Tag Archives: music

sunnin’ the limbs, a playlist;

IMG_4728{click image for spotify playlist. click here for youtube playlist}

 

i think summer playlists are a wonderful thing. the most special of all playlists.

as a former theme park employee who worked in a section of the park where it was always july 4th, 1976 year-round {i.e. working the carnival games outside of the “jaws” ride. no lie.} i know what a typical summer playlist looks like. i did over 18 times a day.

after 9 months of working whac-a-mole i lost the ability to stop myself from twitching when “jeremiah was a bullfrog” blasted over the theme park speakers. i danced with too many scooby-doo toys to pass the time to that songs in a crusty old ring toss game.

i have to physically leave trader joe’s if “good vibrations” is playing. that shit starts up my theme-park-induced ptsd.

that was my 9 months of talking to stuffed animal toys, telling grown men that no, they could not have that stuffed animal patrick the starfish toy because it cost more than their tommy bahama shorts, and having brazilian tour groups accidentally hit me with tennis balls, wiffle balls, and guns with yes, more balls attached to them.

 

i got hit with balls a lot, ya’ll.

and yes, i know how to say “balls” in more languages than i really expected to.

now that i am out of the theme park trenches, i know how a playlist of summer jams can either get you pumped up to get rid of your translucent white legs {like mine look when i put sunscreen on in the beginning of may. whoops.}

or how it can make your left eye twitch or cause people to think you just had a stroke.

 

we’re gonna go with the former route. sound good? i thought so.

i don’t wanna be a cleaning lady, a playlist;

539657_3585076305444_730785790_n (1)
{click image for playlist. click here for youtube playlist}

this semester has been naps at 5:00….until 8pm.
emails and emails and emails and cover letters and emails.
eating whole avocados. stress cheese stick-eating. spending a two hour class writing 20+ donut flavor combinations for later dates.
biggest loser re-runs and putting “watch more dr.who” as a valid item on the to-do list.

kitten kisses. kitten howls. kitten head-butts. crusty butts in my face. wheezes. and paw-holding.
leaving class because, well, i need a nap. a 5pm nap. and a toasted bagel. and a hug.
devising plans on how to get myself out of this icy siberian tundra i call boston.
convincing the little girl i babysit that she doesn’t have a penis on her head, as much as she might like one.

no one prepared me for how “meh” senior year is. it’s not even sad, it’s more of a very bland hospital waiting room.
that smells like old egg salad and windex.
i’m totally okay with having things not figured out. i don’t even want them all figured out.
that’s boring as shizz, anyways.
i want to be nervous. i want be scared.

…and in the wise words of stevie nicks in an early demo of “sara”, “i wanna be a star, i don’t wanna be a cleaning lady!” 
{which has essentially become my post-grad motto}
i’ve been feeling like a cleaning lady in undergrad.
skipping classes to get $1 hot dogs and lobster tails at mike’s and still pulling b.s. a-minuses is putting me at cleaning lady status.

in some ways i’m shocked i’m about to finish my degree. lots of people were when i initally dropped out.  {god, that post is OLD}
i never went back because i was ashamed, ashamed of what not going to college was like.
if anything, it was to get the experience i wanted to have. i felt like my stories would be richer, my jokes more truthful, and it has done that, i think.

but ya’ll, i’m ready to bust out of this popsicle stand.
this is not to say i’m going to go spend my summer or first post-grad year in europe backpacking to gain “life experience” {i think that’s baloney. go to chicago. go to guam. go to freakin’ omaha. experience isn’t in a swede-filled european hostel, ya derps.}

i’m ready for something more challenging than $3 coffees and handing in lackluster pages.i’m ready to feel the itch. to feel these mustard-colored boots leave the comfort of scratchy cobblestones. to feel uncomfortable.

{this playlist is very much about busting out.
but it’s also good for those moments where you feel like torso-dancing in your car,
or had some turd be passive-aggressive to you at work, at starbucks, at your podiatrist’s office.
it will make you smile. and remember that eddie murphy once had a musical career.}

modern vampires and fangirling;

guys, the time has come. my fangirling has reached a comedic height.

new vampire weekend jams, or what i usually call them, vampy weeks.

i am beside myself.  does anyone have a paper bag?

black and white. bold fonts. scenes from new  york. what seems to be a monster as a background singer. i am just can’ting all over this.

i might stuff a homemade guinness whoopie pie (you heard right) in my mouth to stifle my happy cries to the musical gods for newly released jams.

yeah, that sounds pretty good. i think i’ll do that.

all the happy tears;

5a205044784411e299af22000a9e29bc_7
{josh ritter at cabaret du mile end, montreal. february 2013}

we interrupt this blog of corgi lovefangirling, and nerdy gifs to bring you an overly dramatic post about the first love of my life, josh ritter.

guys, i got to see him the flesh this weekend in montreal. my years of adoration and dreams of one day touching his suspenders are over. i was ten feet away from him for two hours of my life, and it was all i could dream of and more. if anyone cares to know, he was only singing to me. it’s whatever. sure, i didn’t get the butt pinch and suspender grazing night i was planning for due to the montreal metro, but i will still tell my grandchildren that i got a handful of his goofily-decorated suspenders and he complimented my silly glasses and he gave me a wink or four from the stage. please don’t tell them otherwise.

i remember hastily listening to him in german class my senior year. one ear bud shoved in my ear, the other in my lovely friend estefania’s earbud. we listened to “the temptation of adam” with half the sound but all of j-ritt’s signature manboy charm. i’ve since watched live at iveagh gardens in 28 awkward parts on youtube, and am always in the process of just can’ting (as in “no, i just can’t”) whenever i maniacally spend hours just staring at him smile so gleefully in his signature vests and schoolboy smile. i should have been conjugating verbs, but instead i just got smitten. it happens.

guys, i’m still sobbing inwardly over how i got to see this man in the flesh on friday. i’m still shaking with the words of “new lover” and running past bouncers to get out of checking my coat for two canadian dollars, because i am the cheapest person on the face of this earth and hellbent on getting a good spot in front of my lover boy before everyone else. and it was worth it to hold my puffer coat to see those man-boy dimples, so big you could hide something inside of them. and he’s still the only man who can make me cry about a puppet romance.

he was perfect. i just, ugh. i just still can’t. i will be over to the side in a dark corner, just beside myself with the same schoolboy smile on my stupid little face.

a february playlist {a-side};

IMG_0573

{click image for playlist!}

this may or may not be a shock, but i’m really not a romantic.

don’t get me wrong; i love love. i just don’t like the notion that love has to be this compartment that we have to fill with this sounds-like-love, looks-like-love, smells-like-love, feels-like-love-so-it-must-be-love-kind-of-thing. that it must be from someone who is romantically entangled with you for it to be legitimate. that is has to be someone who makes out with you under yellow-lit light posts, or in the middle of a crowded sidewalk, or in the rain, or any other taylor swift-ized notion of romantic love.

love, for me, is how much i spread my appreciation towards the things that have decorated my last 21.9 years on this earth. the cinnamon rolls my grandma forced me out of my fold-out-couch bed every year on christmas even to make, that took three agonizing-yet-delicious hours. my grandfather inviting me to pick corn in the backyard, picking out special ears of corn for each family member.

it’s the tattered old vhs tape of the b-rated, non-disney version of peter pan, which i still think of as the best (can someone pleeeease help me find it).  the elementary school boys who ripped up my gel-pen-decorated love notes (complete with cover letter…wish i was joking) on the bus as i stood and watched them do it (i’m looking at you, hunter, i’m looking at  you and your stupid gelled-back hair.)

the mayonnaise my mother attempts to put in her famous broccoli casserole each new year’s day, that i lovingly pretend not to notice, gets my adoration. it’s your roommate, who chimes in when you pen a katy perry parody song about turkey slices when you really should be sleeping. it’s the moment when you really  made your brother, the funniest person in your small world, really sit back and laugh.

these are the songs that aren’t of the sound-like-love, feel-like-love, taste-like-love, look-like-love, must-be-love sort. they’re the love from your family when you still pick all the dried blueberries out of the box of “blueberry morning” cereal, and the moment when you found a dear friend who did the same thing growing up. mouthing the words to billy madison with your older brother. the matching set of skinned knees you and your best friend got from roller-blading into mailboxes because you still didn’t know how to stop. sure, the ooh-yay-i-just-got-kissed-in-the-rain-by-a-really-big-dream-boat kind are sprinkled in there, but they also deserve a spot in that definition, don’t they?

 what it boils down to is this: hunter the love-note-ripper gets my love. mayonnaise gets my love. i think approaching the world, this world of long-lost-hair-gelled crushes of fifth grade, with all kinds of love is the only way to approach it. i think of valentine’s day under this lens. i think of most special days with this lens. i remember when i was thirteen i read that ronald reagan called his mother-in-law each year on his wife’s birthday to thank her for giving birth to his wife. that sort of love, stretching out of something bigger, is the kind of love i’m trying to hit upon. to love all the things that surround the little moments, the little quirks, the little essences of all your favorite people and memories.
that’s what i’d call love.

photo (3)
{tune in next week for the b-side!}

seven year old selves, a playlist;

Smilebox_256958744

{click above picture of three year-old mackenzie for playlist, because seven year-old me had an unsightly white girl ‘fro}

like i said before, the sads don’t typically prey upon me in the winter, i’ll admit. but i also have a pretty unfair advantage for combatting the nasty little case of blues that seem to hover above  most people post-january 1st by having a conveniently late-winter birthday (ahem, march 7th. ahem. i’d love this sriracha sauce iphone case, ahem).

but sometimes, like most people who live in cities where the days look the same at 4am as they do at 4pm, it hits me. it really does. it sneaks up and settles in and asks to stay to take the chill off in my living room and i’m sometimes to nice to shoo it away from my threshold.

and i’m all about honesty on my little space on the internet. i get bummed, despite tales of lady-dates, dance parties, and lit-up bicycle rides. i get sad.  i feel like andre the giant is sitting on my chest at times. i wish i didn’t have #anemicgirlproblems and could feel the tips of my fingertips when gallivanting out in the cold. you know, the usual. nothing out of the ordinary. we all get it.

i sometimes think the origin of this sense of sads we get is when we get disconnected from whoever sits comfortably at the seat of your soul and monitors the goings on of things. i’ll notice i get disconnected to the little seven-year-old mackenzie that inhabits somewhere between my heart and my spleen (whatever, it’s prime real estate there). she’s the original, core mackenzie. she’s a fledgling mackenzie, but still the most authentic. the girl who knew more about  the proper way to attain skinned knees (rollerblading into mailboxes because she didn’t know how to stop, real talk),  than how to order replacement books of checks (ugh, the worst).

she gets angry when she doesnt get to break free and crunch on the snow, watch a disney channel original movie in the safety of her grandma chair, and eat a spoonful of marshmallow fluff right from the jar. spunk without inhibitions and thoughts of compensation, consequence, or outer perception. and she’s been bogged down lately. and its time to shake off the dust and get seven year old self to stretch out her legs, preparing her for another round of roller-blading mishaps.

so, if you’ll excuse me, seven-year-old mackenzie is getting very impatient waiting for me. classic seven year old self. so classic.

a winter’s tale;

IMG_0051

{click above for playlist!}

winter, in my eyes, is kind of the best. it’s a time of upheaval. of paring things down. there’s always a certain case of giddiness i get when winter rolls around, and that’s not even because of christmas or the holidays. i love the dead cold of january. i even love the brand of post-january 1st dreariness that only merits a bag full of $1 books and a new kind of cookie. maybe this shows the floridian in me, but summer dulls me down while winter perks me up like a shot of espresso to the brain.

it’s a built-in recharge button. a season of snooze-ing alarm clocks and basking in the warmth of your space heater because you have #anemicgirlproblems. whistling tea kettles. dust-covered hello kitty house slippers. late-night bananagrams. it’s crusty bread and soup and apple cake and mulled cider and buckeyes.

winter is a kind of music that sounds like drinking whiskey. it’s paradoxically warm and biting. it’s staying up later than you reckoned because it’s dark all the time and you can’t tell the difference between 4am and 4pm. winter is clean and bright and shiny. winter is going out dancing until midnight because you know it’s a cheap way to stay warm. winter is pretend “smoking” with the cold air and a fake cigarette between your hands, like a seven year old. winter is basically permission to be seven years old.  i don’t think people really appreciate winter past january 1st, and i think that’s a shame.

because like, best of all, no need to shave. that’s really the best part about winter, amiright?

all of the thanks;

thanks to having enough time to read books for pleasure this semester….err, i don’t actually have the time to do it, but i stubbornly assume i do…and then don’t do required readings. so, um. whoops. but thanks.

thanks be to louis c.k., sangria, and fresh skeins of yarn. that is all i need.

thank you to eight minute “cleaning lady” version of  fleetwood mac’s “sara” (“i wanna be a star! i don’t wanna be a cleaning lady!”= my new mantra for post-grad life.)

thanks to the hello kitty house slippers that make me forget i have the worst circulation in all the land. #anemicgirlproblems.

thanks be to the lovely state of massachusetts. your weather confusion, subway performers, and creepy churches keep me smitten with you despite the snot-filled, 27 degree bike rides i endure each morning.

thanks to the bulldog upstairs that really isn’t supposed to be upstairs. even though my landlord doesn’t know about you, i’m glad i get to pet you illegally every other morning or so.

thanks to the right to vote. and the eight year-olds that tried to sell me quiche as i waited in line at the elementary down the street. classic brookline, massachusetts.

thank you insulting bowling alley personas, and salty tasty burger fries.

thanks to the tea selection at the tj maxx down the road (whatever, it’s so good!) and the odd stares i get from my friends when i tell them i have to “stop by tj maxx to get more tea.”

thanks to all of my coffee mugs for looking so damn cute in my  pantry alcove.

thanks for having a dreamy apartment with a freaking pantry alcove.

thanks for three weeks and a plane flight being the only barrier between loving on this nugget.

thanks to the dirty jokes my mother texts me each morning. you are the best way to wake up.

thanks to you, dear reader, for sticking around for my rambles. i adore each and everyone of you. really and truly.

ivy-covered life, a playlist;


{click above for playlist!}

boston and i have been super buddy-buddy lately. i ask her for a sunny day when i don’t have twelve hours of class and internship inside of classrooms full of recycled air. i ask her to give me just enough time to finish up the wonder spot by melissa bank & sula by toni morrison and (guys, my life was changed on the arm of my grandma chair). i ask her for lovely blog friends and old co-workers to  get wired puppy with.

she gives it to me. she tips her cap, says “sorry i was being so lame this time last year,” and gives it to me.

mornings have been punctuated by tea + absurd amounts of soy creamer, daydreaming about anne sexton papers, and coffee with my favorite professors talking about grad school prospects (swoon). afternoons are a hurried rush of microwaved peanut noodles and trying to snag bylines at my internship. nights of bananagrams and pumpkin candles and puzzle times and swing-dancing with strange guys in chairman mao costumes (seriously though). breakfast nooks + earl grey. bowling + tasty burger fries eaten on alleyway stoops. snow muddled with red leaves.

  in short, this is the ivy-covered life i’ve constructed. i dig it. it’s like a ridiculous caricature of an anthropologie catalogue, but i so dig it.

the girl crush is back;

because of this video.

guys, i don’t think you understand how complete i feel right now. because of the existence of this video. it has everything i’ve ever asked the universe for:

more st.vincent in my life (girl crush is at an all-time high). david byrne from the talking heads (which is just perfect, because i’ve been listening to this classic for days.) freakin’ HORNS(!!!) goofy white people dancing. black and white music video. sweet harms (harmonies).

i am literally beside myself. i’ll brb. i have to go breathe heavily into a bag right now. i’ll be in a dark corner if you need me.