Category Archives: Music

Is Beauty Perfection, or just Definition…

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Do you ever feel imperfect?  Your abs are a keg, your hair is a cyclone, and your skin looks like a connect the dots? Trust, me, you aren’t alone.  Even those paid to be perfect are imperfect – the forced weight loss, cosmetic surgery, and botched liposuction are proof of this. Mickey Rourke is unrecognizable, Tara Reid’s stomach is from a horror movie, and even Kathy Ireland is now sporting a bonafide gut.

This is a flashback to that moment 8 years ago when I was the skinniest of my adult life, had perky boobs, silky hair and didn’t realize that the freckly girl I saw in the mirror may not actually be who still stared back…I want to say thank you to my old co-worker who got me drunk  and said, “are you blind, you are HOT”.

So for all those times you feel imperfect, remember you are unbelieveably, unremarkably not uniqBeauty-is-in-the-eye-of-the-beholder-and-it-may-be-necessary-from-time-to-time-to-give-a-stupid-or-misinformed-beholder-a-black-eye.ue in this. You are far less unspecial then you make yourself out to be, in fact, you are just like everybody else. Maybe some hide it better, maybe some days are worse, but nobody is perfect…perfectly flawed perhaps.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, sometimes the beholder just isn’t you…and thank god for that.

Am I faithful, am I strong, am I good enough to belong? In your reverie of a perfect girl? – Sarah MacLachlan

The Ginga Ninja

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Do you ever really know somebody?

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redhead-maskIt’s funny, you think you know a person and then something…somewhere changes and all bets are off.  We think we know the ins and outs of why people operate the way they do – the jocks, the jackasses, the pleasant and the petrified. But do we?

The really confident people, you know, the ones who admonish you or have really strong opinions one way or another – sometimes you find out that deep down they are just as insecure as you and learned to lash out first…that way it didn’t hurt so bad when they were picked on, or maybe, just maybe they hoped that people would be too scared to attack at all.

And the indecisive person?  Are they actually indecisive…or are they too scared to offend somebody else and therefore refuse to choose so they can’t be blamed for the decision?  I know what it feels like to back down quickly, I know what it feels like to second-guess.  I’m not saying I won’t stand my ground…trust me, in the right company I will.  But, there are times it is me being submissive because I am too afraid to anger, or am unprepared for the fight.

So, depending on who is viewing me and on what day – I can seem overly confident or underly decisive (I know it’s not a word, but I love it).  But, suddenly, it is me in all my glory that can’t be trusted and doesn’t appear to know myself, or at the very least present myself.  Nobody is ever really black and white, particularly not anybody of substance.

In this world, we have gotten used to witnessing the end result, not what brought us to that place.  We live in a society of treating the symptom, not the cause. I’ve seen a lot of bad things happen to a lot of people. I’ve seen a lot of people do bad things.  We say not to let others get under our skin…we say not to care, not to listen, not to worry and to always be ourselves.  But, how realistic is this?  We are afterall…human.

So that brings me to the question – do we ever really know someone and inevitably do we always know ourselves? I think we can change our mind all the time. I think we can question our meaning, our world and our weight….and  I think maybe you can never really, truly, honestly know someone or what they think of you. Or even, sometimes what you think of you. I’ve never known such an upbeat song to have such mixed lyrics, but… Some nights I feel this way, and well some nights… I don’t.images (3)

Some nights I stay up cashing in my bad luck
Some nights I call it a draw
Some nights I wish that my lips could build a castle
Some nights I wish they’d just fall off

But I still wake up, I still see your ghost
Oh, Lord, I’m still not sure what I stand for oh
What do I stand for? Most nights I don’t know anymore…

This is it, boys, this is war – what are we waiting for?
Why don’t we break the rules already?
I was never one to believe the hype
Save that for the black and white
I try twice as hard and I’m half as liked,
But here they come again to jack my style

Well, some nights I wish that this all would end
‘Cause I could use some friends for a change.
And some nights I’m scared you’ll forget me again
Some nights I always win.

So this is it. I sold my soul for this?
Washed my hands of that for this?
I miss my mom and dad for this? Come on.

No. When I see stars, that’s all they are
When I hear songs, they sound like this one, so come on.

Well, that is it guys, that is all – five minutes in and I’m bored again
Ten years of this, I’m not sure if anybody understands
This one is not for the folks at home;
Sorry to leave, mom, I had to go
Who the fuck wants to die alone all dried up in the desert sun?

My heart is breaking for my sister and the con that she call “love”
When I look into my nephew’s eyes…
Man, you wouldn’t believe the most amazing things that can come from…
Some terrible nights…

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The Ginga Ninja

He Got on the Plane

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say-anything-john-cusackWhatever happened to chivalry? Does it only exist in 80’s movies? I want John Cusack holding a boombox outside my window. I want to ride off on a lawnmower with Patrick Dempsey. I want Jake from Sixteen Candles waiting outside the church for me. I want Judd Nelson thrusting his fist into the air because he knows he got me. Just once I want my life to be like an 80’s movie, preferably one with a really awesome musical number for no apparent reason. But no, no, John Hughes did not direct my life. – Olive Penderghast, Easy A.

And isn’t it too bad that he didn’t?  I wish that movie love scenes were real and that boys really did do these things.  I also really wish my life was set to a soundtrack or had a really awesome choreographed dance scene.  Music makes everything better.  I mean, it can also make things sadder and nobody wants that, but it makes the good moments a little more good and the memorable ones a lot more memorable.  But, back to the point, where is the romance?

Is romance the little gestures or the big ones?

Do you think planning 25 gifts for a 25th birthday, or just simply getting somebody a coffee when they are tired the real gesture?  Is looking at somebody with love in your eyes worth more than a fist-fight in the street?  Is having the decency to text someone back more meaningful than a cross-continent flight?  Is remembering your fourth anniversary better than a private jet to Paris?  You tell me.  Don’t get me wrong, nobody I have ever dated could afford a private jet to Paris, but is love in the big things or the little ones?

I know that I have tried in my own guarded way to show love.  Through thoughtful gifts, gestures, words, personalized breakfasts and daily hugs I have tried my best.  I may not always be perfect, but goddammit, I have tried.  And so have a few others along the way, even jaded old me can admit that.

I once dated a boy who lit a hallway with candles and scattered rose petals to my bed.  I was hand-delivered the ultimate girl-romance moment (cue the song “Kiss Me” now), but I was only 22.  The whole thing seemed a little overdone and awkward if I’m honest.  I have also had the long-awaited regret email, love poetry sent by letter and most shockingly, the vacation fling turned real.  And recently?  I had a young man continually try to put his arm around me 50’s style while walking along a boardwalk…he took deep, satisfying sighs and stared dreamily up into the moonlight.  You know what?  The whole thing was annoying…and FAKE.

But, love, real love should be making a sacrifice, no matter how small.  For years I begged a partner to turn to me and look at me as he sang the Proclaimers 6 simple words “…And I would walk 500 miles…” and he never would…in all our years together he never would.  That small, miniscule act would have meant the John-Hughes-chivalry-loving moments of 80’s movies could come true more than any over-the-top widely inappropriate gesture ever would.

In today’s day and age a text is not enough.  An e-birthday card, a facebook profile pic, a comment on a status update…these things are not romance.  Romance is waiting on somebody’s porch for them to come home – not texting them at 3 am.  Romance is telling somebody they look stunning, not sending a booty call message spelling “come” with only 3 letters and a “u”.  Romance is buying every single lemon baked good you find because it’s somebody’s favourite, not adding them to your circles on Google+.

But, like in the movies, (even the highly realistic ones that know life is not a musical and romance is not a John Hughes movie)….it comes now and again.  You still hear about beautiful proposal stories, men giving up gluten for their intolerant wives and ladies moving across the world to be with their man.  Just the other day a male friend of mine admitted that once he ordered flowers from his florist girlfriend under a false name and showed up to give them to her in person.  Oh, and a tiny sidenote, she lived in another country.  He made me smirk, but he proved chivalry is in fact not dead.  Now, I just need to work on getting him to follow me around with a boombox and start flash mobs often…totally not kidding.

At least that girl got what most of us movie-loving wannabes can only dream about.  But, let’s just say it does give me a reason to still dream.  I don’t expect my life or my love to be perfect.  I don’t expect in today’s busy day and age that I will be on somebody’s mind at all times, but at least a story or two (even sometimes my own) make me realize I can still dream for Prince Charming, even if he is only Charming for a Moment.

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The Ginga Ninja

Now what did you say was a virtue?

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“You can’t hurry love, you just got to wait.  Love don’t come easy, it’s a game of give and take.”

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I have to say, I think these lyrics are actually pretty true.  I’m sure I haven’t always been the best at following them – patience is a virtue I only seem to have some of the time, but for all those little girls out there waiting for their first kiss, first dance, first boyfriend…just keep waiting.  Your first everything only comes once and when it does, well…..it’s gone forever.

There are a million and one thirty-something women out there still hoping to meet the “one”.  But, you know what?  Today’s version of life just postponed it.  Less and less people are getting married young and more and more people are truly waiting around for their most compatible match.  Once upon a time, if you didn’t meet your soulmate by the age of 26, well you settled for whoever was around at the time.  Now, women have the choice whether or not to marry that man and often, as a result, we end up single.

Being a single women isn’t always easy, but then again, is it any harder than being a single man?  I guess we have the inevitable biological clock that men don’t really have (Alec Baldwin just had his second child at 55) and traditionally men still make higher salaries, but really, why would the life of a single 32 year old woman be any worse than that of a man?

For all the times I think “where are you already?”, I also have to remember that often I choose this.  I have been lucky enough to have loved not only once, but many times and in fairly healthy relationships.  I have also had the choice to walk away from things when timing was wrong and to settle or not settle for somebody who doesn’t make my life better. I may in the end be my own worst enemy because frankly, I’m a loyal and dedicated girlfriend, but I’m petrified to be a wife.  I think the reason is that I know marriage is more than the wedding and your life is more than the mortgage and kids.  Until death do you part can be a very long time in today’s day and age (damn you improved healthcare) and the impending fear of this vow scares me away from the idea of the altar each and every time.

Still, as I raise my flag to women’s lib and commend all those (men and women alike) who haven’t settled, in a childlike way I still hope to meet the person that may not be the one, may not be my side until the death bed, but that I feel comfortable enough to at least try to commit to.  Fear is a nasty thing and it can come in many forms – fear of being alone, fear of being single, fear of being stagnant, fear of starting over, but without fear there is nothing to propel you to the next step.  You need to know bad to know good, you need to know happy to feel sad.  So, whether I relish in my single life and continue to casually date, give up until I stumble into the next thing, or miraculously find Mr. Right or at least Mr. Right Now is still to be seen.  But, I think it’s true.  You can’t hurry love, you just have to wait…and I think that even reigns true when it comes to loving yourself.  Maybe the reason things haven’t worked out so far is that I was seeking the wrong love.  The love I needed most in order to find the right match was in fact, my own.  Patience is a virtue, but so is self-preservation.

And it takes no time to fall in love
But it takes you years to know what love is
And it takes some fears to make you trust
It takes those tears to make it rust
It takes the dust to have it polished – Jason Mraz

The Ginga Ninja

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Mr. Right Was Always Right Here

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Daddy's Little Girl, Fred Flintstone & PebblesSo, I debated just reblogging last year’s Father’s Day post for anybody who missed it.  Good and bad, right and wrong, I sure do love my Daddy.

But, I stumbled across this great article earlier this week.  It was about a father who wrote a letter to his young daughter.  He wanted her to know that in her future she should have worth, she should have standards and she should be willing to wait for somebody who had been willing to wait for her.  She was more than a toy, she was more than a fling for a boy, she didn’t need to meet Mr. Right, just Mr. Right For Her.

http://mobile.news.com.au/lifestyle/relationships/dads-heartwarming-letter-to-daughter-about-mr-right-gets-internet-love/story-fnet0he2-1226638398797

It got me thinking.  In all of the years I have dated; the ups, the downs, the makeups, the breakups…I don’t really remember my dad ever telling me what I should or should not be doing (at least not in regards to boys).  When he liked a boy, he vocalized that he may be a good husband and if I chose to partner with him, he could be a good match.  But, the important thing here was that he always specified…IF I CHOSE.

He didn’t say much about the boys that were no good for me, he never called anybody a bum, or a good for nothing or an over my dead body….but, he always sat by quietly just waiting to see what I would do and who I would choose.  Sometimes, after the fact he had an opinion or two, but he was very careful not to say anything that would make my mind up for me when I was deep in the heart of it.  When a tough decision came last year over a good guy…he simply told me to do right for me and reinforced that I had to question what could make me feel any less than the best version of myself.

In all of these 31 years, I don’t remember him ever telling me I had to get married, I had to have kids, I had to have a partner, or even that I had to have a concrete life direction.  He has never asked me for grandkids or ever mentioned how much money I’ve wasted despite what I owe him.  He has watched me through many adventures and many changes and each and every time he seems to have a positive outlook on the “rest of my life”, what I deserve and who I will be.  I don’t ever remember him telling me to grow up, to get real, or to lower my expectations.  In many ways my dad has always been my best friend and I don’t think he has ever worried whether I had a man to “take care of me” once he is gone….because I think he raised me well enough to take care of myself.

So, like the father from the letter; I think that my Dad hopes that I meet Mr. Good Enough.  But, let’s be specific here… not Mr. Good Enough to Settle For, but Mr. Good Enough for Me.

 …But Whatever Road You Choose, I’m Right Behind You Win Or Lose. – Rod Stewart

The Ginga Ninja

Thank You For The Music

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music tattoo on redheadWhat does music mean to you?  I find that most people can relate certain periods of their life to specific songs, sounds and melodies.  That every sequence of notes somehow plays out a little story in our head.  Every guitar riff, every beat of the drum, every lyric and every haunting chorus can transport you right back to a day, a year, or a memory.

Music is a big deal to me.  A very big deal.  It always has been and hopefully it always will be.  It started with my dad. He always had music playing as a child and I can remember running around the backyard in the summertime listening to John Fogerty and the Flashdance Soundtrack. He, my older brother and practically every boy I have ever dated have played endless music trivia  and “Guess The” games with me (Whether I wanted them to or not).

I can hear a song and tell you the singer, if not the name, era and whether or not it’s the original version.  Ask my best friend how many original Westlife songs there are – she will tell you hundreds, I will tell you almost none.  I can build you a playlist for every phase of life, city I’ve lived in, roommate I’ve had and tell you the first time I heard a song and why I reminisce. Funnily enough, as a girl, I find I often relate more to the lyrics then the sounds – boys focus on instrumentation, beat, tone – girls focus on the mood, the word and the melodic voice.

I did however, find myself turning down the volume, shutting off the radio and getting lost in thought during car rides lately. My apartment was quieter, my song list was shorter and my CD’s were less used (well, obviously).  But, this is something that I traditionally never did, this is something that simply isn’t me.  I always had my music on the loudest, the longest and evoked the most meaning from what blasted through those speakers. Hell, a roommate threatened to leave because my room was above his and it was the room of choice for blaring Saturday tunes. Each and every time my dad entered my car he was met with a heart-attack-inducing decibel of sound or “racket” as he liked to put it, but that never stopped me.  Not much has.

But, not too long ago, a friend who hadn’t driven with me in years got in my car.  The first thing she said to me is “Your radio is off, something must be wrong”.  How interesting.  I know it means a lot to me and I know that I have harassed most in my life to play my CD’s, put up with my playlists, deal with my new instruments and carry the spirit wherever they go…but to know that they (by the way, did you ever wonder who “they” are?) relate it as a piece of me too, means a lot.  And you know what?  She was right.  Something was wrong.

So, now, when I’m deep in thought after a long day at work, worrying about finances, rehearsing a conversation I want to have with my boss…I take a moment to realize there is an eerie silence in my car. I stop, take a deep breath…and crank that knob.

Some of my best friends are hiding there. Not just in my computer, my TV, or my MP3 player. But, in old mixed tapes, disc mans, old stereos, in my car speakers, in movie soundtracks, in old home videos and in my own voice. The Traveling Wilburys, John Lennon, CCR, The Rolling Stones, Serena Ryder, Franki Valli, Bruno Mars, Billy Joel, Rod Stewart, Blondie, ABBA, Coldplay, Counting Crows, Florence and the Machine, Jay-Z, New Kids on the Block, Mumford and Sons, Pink, Queen, Ray Charles and even the Violent Femmes have always been there for me.  Who is there for you?

Music is my religion. – Jimi Hendrix

The Ginga Ninja

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