There was a time in my life where I was very much about the music. It seems there were frequent occasions to listen to it: in my room, driving about with friends, at dances, at clubs, working out, or on my Walkman just about anywhere. Nowadays, I rarely listen to music ever. And I miss it. And whenever I do listen, it reminds me of these distant, younger, simpler times.
One time when I still do listen to music is when I do the dishes, or some other chore that doesn’t require too much active mental attention. I was listening while doing the dishes this Sunday when this song came on. Oh no! Instantly I was transported, it felt almost bodily, back to any one of many forlorn, angsty, (in my memory always overcast, though they couldn’t literally all have been) teenage afternoons, perpetually love sick and besotted. In my room. Door closed. As I believe I have discussed here before, I sort of love the ache of that particularly poignant type of nostalgia. But that one song wasn’t to be the end of it.
One place I don’t frequently listen to music anymore is in the car. Because I get so tired of the radio, especially commercials, and you can only listen to the same 5 or 6 CDs so many times. I usually listen to books in the car. But when I got in to go to work the next morning, I happened to see Jewel’s “Pieces of You” CD, just lying there. And with “Foolish Games” still echoing through my oft in-the-clouds mind, I popped it in. And listened to the whole thing, some songs several times, this song no less than 5 times (thankfully I had a hearing downtown that morning, so a longer than usual commute, to facilitate this listen down memory lane). Switched back to books for the drive back to the office; because you can’t exactly go about a business day in a lovesick Jewel coma.
Fortunately/unfortunately, music is about as close as I ever get to time travel.
Speaking of time travel, I am an absolute sucker for any movie/book dealing with the subject. I think the reason I was so vulnerable to the Jewel attack was that I had just seen earlier that weekend the film About Time. Have you seen it? Oh, so good, but also so sad.
What always fascinates me about any time travel story is how they deal with certain challenges/time travel quandaries: what is the mechanism for time travel they utilize? are previous versions of “you” there in those previous times, or is there somehow, mysteriously, no overlap? perhaps most significantly, does “your” presence in some past time impact the entire future of the world (you pick up a stone, and that somehow causes a tsunami 500 years later; you say hello to a stranger, and that inadvertently sparks World War III).
About Time addressed some of these macro time travel issues, as well as some micro ones, in clever and novel ways. Some I hadn’t ever considered. Some really made me think, the biggest questions having to do with romantic relationships, and if you could go back and redo or do differently certain dates, encounters, conversations, would you? And what would you do differently? And what would you do if you later found out that while you were having this amazing connection with the love of your life, something tragic was happening to a family member or someone close to you? And you could go back, and either relive the romantic moment, crucial to your future love, or risk missing that opportunity in an effort to prevent the simultaneously occurring tragedy?
It also dealt, through the prism of time travel, with what constitutes true happiness, and how one should live ones life. How one should live each day.
Warning: it was very sweet, but left me very melancholy. If you intend to watch it, and have any Jewel CDs lying around, you might want to hide those, or give them to a trusted friend to hold for safekeeping.