Monday, November 21, 2005

I still love the Indigo Girls (and other reasons why I will never be a hipster)

I have too much to read. I know this is a typical complaint, but at the moment it's kinda crimping my style. I can't believe I just used a phrase like that. Who am I? Some nemesis of Sarah Jessica Parker from her "Square Pegs" days? Or better still, Jesse Spanno's cousin on "Saved by the Bell?" I don't know.

I'm just tired. New haircut happiness is still running strong, but tonight, all I really wanted to do is go to bed with "Nylon" magazine, ice cream and "Gilmore Girls" on dvd. I stayed home to read and rest because I've been wearing myself out and needed another night in.

And should I try to take Monday off work? I already asked for it, got it, and then returned it. Is it legit to take a sick day when "sick day" = "if I drove back to NYC from New Hampshire on Sunday, I would most definitely be sick of my boyfriend?" There is a question for the ages.

I guess I'm just frustrated because I can't make plans. The plans keep changing. It's become a rather nasty theme in my life over the past couple years, but especially over the past year. You know, it's really wrong that you spend your entire childhood shuttled around in plans: pre-school, lower school, middle school, high school, four years of college to end up in adulthood conditioned to dealing with life on a school calendar and increments of four years.

This all comes as no big surprise. What is a big surprise is that despite being well aware of these facts, I know my frustration comes from the inability to rely upon a concrete plan.

I'm tired for a number of reasons, but mostly, I just want everything to stop changing, okay? I guess staying home was a nice way to hope the world would just stop spinning for a little while. While on the phone with my mom tonight, I realized that there is a steady little stream of air traffic air space visible from one of my windows. I watched plane after plane zoom by on their way to Laguardia. How soon til I can get home and assess just how much my notion of home has irrevocably changed? My dad told me today that he doesn't want me to spend too much time at our house in Lakeview because he doesn't want it to give me nightmares. I think he wanted to say that he wanted me to remember the house as it was instead of as it is. A cesspool. A lot of molded stuff. Things that were so precious. Things that made our lives bright. Things that reflected a collected life. A composed life. I loved having friends over to my house. When I was home, I prefered having everyone over for dinner rather than go out. I had so many pictures of my friends and my family: birthday parties with hats, crepe paper and crepes with nutella, late chats on the sofas, impromptu concerts by my brother.

And now it's all gone. And I know that it's what you bring to things that gives them significance. Does this have anything to do with signifiers and signified? I'm just a girl from New Orleans. My brain is kinda fried and it probably always was thanks to bathing in that Mississippi river water for my entire childhood.

But anyway, I just ache for familiar things. I'm really looking forward to returning to Hanover, NH. I cried last year at the lunch counter at Lou's because I felt like things had changed so much. Or I had changed so much. I shouldn't think Hanover never changes, but I would like to buy some chocolate covered ginger at the Co-Op, walk around Occum Pond, admire Baker Tower and take a fleeting glance of Frat Row.

My reading really stinks. I just want to read familiar things, and yet I get attracted to new, different things.

All the same, I've been listening to the Indigo Girls non-stop. I have to thank Rachel for replenishing my collection. It's usually a sign of crisis for me to be listening to them this much, but "Ghost" hasn't been on repeat, don't panic.

I just need a familiar voice. My first "real" concert (not Jazz Fest, not street performers or the symphony at the zoo) was an Indigo Girls concert at the Saenger Theater in New Orleans. I went with my friend Becky. I can remember it like it was yesterday. Buying the tickets at the Ticketmaster booth in Maison Blanche (a New Orleans department store that has long since been closed) and sitting in the balcony. We even had a celebrity sighting: Kathleen Turner (mean) and Dennis Quaid (nice).

At the end of the concert, they said everyone should stay so that they could film a video. It was for their song "Joking" (It was the "Rites of Passage" tour) and they asked everyone to empty the balcony and crowd the floor. Becky and I stood on seats in the center.

I've never seen the video. Someone claimed to have seen me on VH1 at 2 in the morning sometime in the 90s.

I would love to see Becky and I frozen in our awkward haircuts from 1992. Me in a long braid and her with permed curls. But it might hurt too much to think of how she's married and living in Alabama with a mess of dogs and I live in an apartment in Brooklyn, still reading all the time. Reading myself into a corner.

Maybe it's better when memories stay as they should be - in your memory.

The Indigo Girls have this new song that says the "new road is an old friend." I have to shake my head and laugh that Emily Saliers and Amy Ray still bring levity to my commute home and my general well-being. That sustained relationship and the fact that this entry points towards the 13 year old me who will never leave a particular place in my heart and general sense of self-protection.


Blogger R J Keefe said...

This is one lovely post, methinks.

Tue Nov 22, 10:35:00 AM  
Anonymous rachel said...

I think they have a new album out, but I'm not positive. I adored the most recent one.

Glad you're not stuck on Ghost :) Lord almighty, that song is powerfully full of memories for me, too.

Tue Nov 22, 01:04:00 PM  
Blogger Ms. NOLA said...

"all that we let in" or is there another?

oh GOD - and I forgot about all the drowning connotations in "Ghost."

Tue Nov 22, 01:43:00 PM  
Anonymous Brian said...

Great post. Found it when I was trying to silence a debate that is over a decade old. My wife and I were also at the Indigo Girls' concert at the Saenger. Do you happen to remember who opened the show? I think it was a pre-fame Sarah McLaughlin, but my wife is not so sure. Do you remember?

Tue Dec 06, 12:49:00 PM  
Blogger Ms. NOLA said...

Matthew Sweet was supposed to have opened, but he didn't. I don't think it was Sarah McLachlan because I distinctly remember seeing her about three years later at the Saenger with a (then unknown) Paula Cole. Hmm, now I am curious.

Thu Dec 08, 08:44:00 AM  
Anonymous Brian said...

The debate rages on...

Thu Dec 08, 02:32:00 PM  
Blogger Ms. NOLA said...

I emailed a friend who might know. But gosh, now I really wonder. I think your wife might be right. This could all be revisionist history in my mind.

Thu Dec 08, 04:32:00 PM  

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