Love is a Mix tape

im a bit tipsy right now, because i decided to have a nightcap
and then write this, it’ll be good, i promise

but before i go on about the book, a note about drinking, recently i tweeted about not enjoy drinking anymore, that’s really just a side-effect of being poor and having a stomachache that day. I did, however, learn in my wine class, that people like me, who have a fairly high tolerance for alcohol are more likely to be alcoholics, since we don’t feel it nearly as much.

but i know if you ask my friends, they’ll say im a light weight.

i will never turn down a drink, if someone offers me one, hopefully, no one will push me into throwing up, but if it’s the persons birthday or some special occasion, i will never disappoint. this is especially true in asian countries i found…

at my grandpas birthday, i was less than the legal age of drinking in china, i took a shot of chinese spirits, about 45%, it burned like fuck, but i drank it, because it’s my grandpa’s birthday, and i then ate two bowls of rice, but the point is, i wont disappoint.

okay back to the book.

the library stuck a “summer reading” sticker on it, it’s light weight, it’s short, the paper and font doesn’t suck, i decided to give it a go. it also has a stack of whimsical looking tape decks on the cover..!

im going to go ahead and say that this is a memoir: which i didn’t realize right away, needless to say it made me a bit upset, upset that this has all happened.

<--spoilers ahead--->

every chapter is described by a mix tape, a tape that the author and his late wife made together, a real tape, a tape, A TAPE, not a CD, and definitely not a playlist. the tape sets the tone for the rest of the book.

for some reason, i can somehow, totally imagine this book being made into a movie, with an insanely LARGE soundtrack, a few weeks after its release, tape decks are flying off the shelves at electronic and dollar stores, hipsters will give them as presents, setting off a new wave.

so what about its writing? it’s a comfortable and easy read, it’s very much heartfelt, and at certain points (before i found out it IS a memoir) you can really feel the situation happening, and there are some things that one can’t really make up (but if you can make up harry potter, you can make up anything), honesty, brutal honesty, you could really feel it here.

you will follow the protagonist (author) from before marrying his wife, to after his experience with her death. because it happened so suddenly, there will be no particularly sad parts, you’ll just feel like you were shot with a tranquilizer gun, it happened, and then now..we live?

it strangely reminded me of Nick Hornby’s Juliet, Naked. Perhaps it both dealt with music, but both these novels are written with a feeling of distance. I can’t really fully describe it, but it’s a good read, theres a lot of good music here, SO MUCH good music that i am ashamed to say that i am really obsessed with a boyband at the moment and there’s nothing i can do about it.

yup, will listen to aretha franklin to up my music street cred.

and as always, i’ve noted some of my favorite portions in the book:

page 70: If she breaks my heart, no matter what hell she puts me through, I can say it was worth it, just because of right now. Out the window is a blur and all I can really hear is this girl’s hair flapping in the wind, and maybe if we drive fast enough the universe will lose track of us and forget to stick us somewhere else

page 137: she knows dreams are something you have to steal. the new wave girl scams on other people’s identities, mixing and matching until she comes up with a style of her own, knowing that nothing belongs to her, that she just gets to wear it until somebody else comes along with faster fingers to snatch it away. she knows pop dreams are a hustle, a deception, a “glamor” in the witch craft sense of the word. she knows how to bluff and how to scam. She sing about counterfeiting, shoplifting, bootlegging, home taping. she’s in on the hustle – you steal it, it’s yours, it’s legal tender. the new wave girl knows all this, which is why she is dangerous. the new wave boy knows how dangerous she is, which is why he stands behind her.
the boy and the girl, together in electric dreams.

page 164: you lose a certain kind of innocence when you experience this type of kindness. you lose your right to be a jaded cynic. you can no longer go back through the looking glass and pretend not to know what you know about kindness. it’s a defeat, in a way.

page 166 – 167: i was helpless in trying to return people’s kindness, but also helpless to resist it. kindness is a scarier force than cruelty, thats for sure.

(my laptop is overheating, typing this is starting to be painful, but i will soldier on)

page 167: human benevolence is totally unfair. we don’t live in a kind and generous world, yet we are kind and generous. we know the universe is out to burn us, and it gets us all the way it got Renee, but we don’t burn each other, not always. we are kind people in an unkind world, to paraphrase wallace steven.s how do you pretend you dont know about it, after you see it? how do you go back to acting like you don’t need it? how do you even the score and walk off a free man? you can’t.

this book, is a story about love. unfortunately for us, we’ve been programmed to think that love stories all turn out good, when most of them don’t. but i’d like to think that having memories of love, having felt love at some point or other is enough, to supplant for the rest of our own lives.

(ack look at me, i dont really believe in love, but i want to believe, so i guess i’ll have to keep trying, sappppy is dripping out of every letter i am typing right now, sorry, we’ll return to our normal programming of cynicism and sarcasm next entry)

Posted: July 23rd, 2010
Tags: ,
Comments: 1 Comment.
Comment from Jen - July 23, 2010 at 2:28 pm

Wait… you’ve never thrown up from drinking!? Honestly barfing is the only thing that has slowly weened me off teh booze. *sigh*