Travis – “Selfish Jean”

When: after sunset, 24 May 2007
Where: Westbound on East Orange Grove Boulevard
Who: My mom
Weather: Warm, clear

By the end of the school year, I’d come to realize I was on a roll. I had accomplished everything I wanted to do; I’d published some films (well, a vlog, but you have to start somewhere) and established a stage persona. I’d chosen a college, passed my SAT’s with flying colors, I’d been in a goddamn tornado, and I had a schedule. Now I was coming into school an hour early. Maybe I’d go out for breakfast, maybe I’d just like the peace and quiet of an empty bus and library. I could have gone either way.

It was during my morning downtime that I discovered something amazing– the Cold War was back on. I’d heard rumors after the Polonium incident, but this was thrilling news. By now the Cold War was a nostalgic memory, more straightforward and understandable than what we were going through at the time. I got my analysis on the situation from The Daily Show, which I watched every morning with my friend Wyatt. This led me to Demetri Martin, which led me to this:

I watched it when I woke up, before dawn. I couldn’t get it out of my head, but I didn’t care. This was a different kind of song. Rather than a soaring quality, painful angst or a certain sleaze, it was fun. It was like a feather. It could have been at home in the early sixties, and there was nothing else like it out there. Today we call that pop revival, but it won’t show up again here for a long, long time.

When I got home, I downloaded it, before meeting some friends in Lamanda Park. As my mom picked me up, we passed the globular street lamps of the wide boulevard, the song enveloping the car, and thinking, “this would be a great season finale.” I was living my dream, however modest it was, and wasn’t going to stop any time soon. But before the real weirdness kicked in, I at least had that moment of accomplishment. I had become the man I wanted to be, the man for his time and place. For the first time, I was proud to be me.

Next: Soaring guitars have their downside.

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