The SFW Survey: Which Song Do You Most Closely Associate With The First Time You Fell In Love?

Here's our new thing: we're asking everyone in the world to answer song-related questions for us so that we can share your responses on Strawberry Fields Whatever and then all get to know each other so much better. Our next question is "Which song never fails to make you cry?" If you'd like to answer, please email your response here (letitbebeautiful at yahoo dot com), sometime before September 1st. Unfortunately, we will not be able to publish every submission we receive. (Our most sincere apologies go out to everyone who submitted to this week's round under the impression that all responses would be featured on SFW. We were overwhelmed with submissions and have decided to cap off all SFW Survey entries at 25 writers in the name of not crashing our blog. We loved reading all the words you wrote us and hope you will submit again.)


The November I was nineteen a boy mailed me a mix CD which came in a case he'd made out of corrugated cardboard. I'd never kissed him, and I'd only met him once, but I anticipated loving him and I was right about that. I would love him. 

I had a different boyfriend when I first met him, a Hungarian skateboarder with slammin' inguinal ligaments; I hated him. He called me seventeen times in a row while I was stoned and playing Monopoly with my roommates. I finally picked up, broke up with him, he threatened to kill himself, I didn't believe him, hung up, nobody died, he's definitely still alive, and I went back to playing Monopoly. Once we bought a cake shaped like a football and when he grinned up at me his teeth were blue from the icing and that was when I knew I hated him. Learn to eat your cake like a proper fucking grown-up. 

I broke up with Blue Teeth for Corrugated Cardboard. Blue Teeth had painted me a painting and I threw it out my window. It snowed all winter and when I found the canvas in the springtime all the paint had washed off. Corrugated Cardboard took me out to see The Life Aquatic on Boxing Day and our knees touched, it was a magnificent two-and-a-half hours of knee-touch. I remember nothing of that movie; I was paying too much attention to his knee. We kissed for the first time three weeks later on his patio with a red felt blanket draped round our shoulders like a cape. We stayed together for three and a half years. That same red blanket was lying on the couch the night we broke up.

I lived in New York and he lived a nine hour drive or a twelve hour bus ride or a two hour flight away from me. When you're nineteen you are stupid and believe that loving a boy who lives kind of faraway is the most tragically unfair circumstance that any human being has ever encountered ever. It's grey out and you're wearing a white sweater and you'll allow yourself to believe that this is the worst it will ever get, and you'll be wrong about that. The only time I ever fell in love and I spent the whole thing sobbing. 

"Chariots Of Silk" by Tyrannosaurus Rex was the second song on my mix CD and that November it was my only song. It's the saddest-sounding song that isn't sad- it plays like an elegy, but it's about moose and frogs (who aren't dying). I never once stopped to think that maybe it wasn't sad. I was sad so I wanted it to be sad too. I only bothered to look up the lyrics for the first time last February, when I realized Marc Bolan is my brother. The words go Stone jars stacked with stars on her shoulders/ Hunters of pity she slew and those words are so perfectly, exactly what I'd love for all lyrics to go like, those lyrics are so me to me. 

Me to me enough to sever their association with a period of my life that I resent myself for squandering. Youth wasn't wasted on me but love was. 

-Laura Jane

Electric Honey by Luscious Jackson came out the same week I met the second boy I ever fell in love with. We worked together at a big-deal alternative newsweekly in Boston -- it was my first job after college and I was the receptionist and he was a graphic designer; let's call him Jason. On lunch break I'd go to the convenience store/deli across the street with the other receptionists and we'd eat sandwiches and they'd chainsmoke Marlboro Lights and we'd gossip about all the boys in the office. The rest of the day, I was stuck at the front desk and sometimes J would bring me presents, like paper bags full of Skittles and Starburst and Sour Patch Kids. On Fridays after work we'd drink beer at the bar downstairs. It was the middle of summer and Fenway Park was next door and the streets were full of yelling boys but my boy was very quiet, and smarter than everyone, and funnier than everyone, the best kind of goofball-funny, and he was tall and kind with the softest skin and the nicest shoulders I've ever known.

By the end of summer we were an item and our third "real date" is the one I remember most vividly. It was a Friday and after work we walked down to Newbury Street and walked around for a while, then went out for Thai food and beer and Thai iced tea. After dinner we took the train to Little Italy and bought a box of cannolis and went down to the water and ate the cannolis and kissed a lot. We took a cab home and kissed in the cab and then kissed at his house, to Electric Honey by Luscious Jackson.

I only ever listen to four songs from that album now, but each of those four is so beloved by me, especially "Devotion." It's midtempo and lazy and shimmery and sweet, with lyrics about skies and rockets and shared understanding. There's also repeated lyric where Jill sings about being an "underwater fraulein," which make no sense but still means a lot, because the mood is so right: it's sweet and bighearted and hopeful and grateful, sexy in an chill and easy sort of way -- like it's got nothing to prove. All through the song there's this cool and almost-dopey sense of surrender and I guess that's why I'll treasure it forever. We had a really good two years.


Sleater-Kinney - "Leave You Behind"


I'm seventeen. I think I've been in love before this, but looking back, I realize that I haven't. When I'm not in school or waitressing, I'm stoned. Shake gets on my fingerless gloves, I find dried buds in my coat pockets. 

I've been dating someone for awhile, but we're drifting apart and thinking about college, which looms at the end of the year. I've become really close with this friend of mine, he's elfin, and we lay in the trunk of our friend's Jeep most days after school, watching our fingers interlace and listening to classic rock. He's so quiet, so I do most of the talking. Sometimes we kiss in closets, or when I push him against his kitchen countertop at three in the morning. He makes me feel electric. 

The moment I realize I'm falling in love, we are listening to music on the floor of my bedroom. I make him tea and he gulps mug after mug, and we change sides over and over. One of us puts on "Gimme Shelter" by the Stones, and our eyes meet. 

I'm twenty-four now. I'm writing this over three hundred miles from the woods of New Jersey. Logan calls out from the kitchen, "You're really rocking this song right now. It reminds me of making out with you in your room. On that little portable record player. I was so nervous, I kept drinking all of that water." 

-Kristina Bauman

I met my first boyfriend on Livejournal, during the summer between grades 11 and 12. We were supposed to start a band. Our songs sucked, but we had major sexual tension, which erupted when he told me he'd gotten into video game school in Miramichi, New Brunswick, and would be leaving in the fall. 

That night I was throwing a party at my parents' place. He'd arrived with two 40s of Olde English and by the end of the night he had collapsed in the backyard, sopping with his own vomit. After I wiped him up and dragged him inside and put him to bed, I started bawling, and the only thing that could make it better was the Ken Burns Billie Holliday compilation. 

We dated all summer. At one point he fucked off to Montreal for some protest and got thrown in jail for a few days; I told my friends I felt like a "war bride" and kept playing and replaying "I Cover The Waterfront". I know, but when you're seventeen, and the guy's filled your head with all sorts of pseudo-revolutionary claptrap designed to glorify his directionlessness- but he scoots around town on a scooter and goes down on you all the time- every trifle smacks of romantic tragedy. 

-Alexandra Molotkow (writer: The Hairpin, Weekend at Bernie Taupin's)

"Your Song" by Elton John is an unabashedly corny bad song, made boring by how earnest it is. It's stupidly self referential; it's a song about writing a song, which is cheap. But every time he sings, I hope you don't mind, I realize over and over again that I don't. I like it. 

Initially, I thought my first love was this super punk rock guy who did heroin or at least lied about doing heroin, which is really just as ridiculous since I was fifteen and wore a trillion baby barrettes and made straight As. I tried so hard to fill my CD binder with all the important punk cds and learn everything about music, but I only got as far as loving The Clash, who I still love obviously and forever. 

When he disappeared, I started spending more and more time with my best male friend. We played a lot of pattycake type hand games and made other excuses to touch each other. We said "I love you" the first time we kissed and it was TRUE.

We spent that summer driving back and forth to each other's faraway houses down windy river roads, real Pennsylvania stuff, through dense green woods with the cicadas going crazy and both of us almost dying all the time from being terrible, underslept teenage drivers. He was into the classic rock station on the radio, well really he was strictly into The Wall (in a borderline compulsive way), but the car couldn't play CDs, so we waded through a lot of Meat Loaf and Elton John waiting for Pink Floyd to play. In spite of myself I loved those songs so much, I couldn't help it: I was forging new pathways in my tiny baby brain, and all of my neurons wanted more love and more love songs and they traveled as fast as lightning and couldn't be stopped. Before I knew it, I was singing how wonderful life is while you're in the world, in an only-half-joking croon, goofing out like I'd never goofed in front of any boy before. 

Then there’s the part where Elton John says if he had money he'd buy a big house where they both could live, and it made me want to grow up so fast and get a bunch of magazine subscriptions delivered to a big house where we both could live, forever. I did grow up, and I have a lot of magazines, but that guy grew up too, and started doing heroin just like the first guy, because nothing gold can stay and because, duh, he was always weirdly obsessed with "Comfortably Numb."

-Morgan Peirce 

Sarah McLachlan's "Possession" as remixed by Rabbit in the Moon and distributed on a mixtape by Baltimore DJ Scott Henry that the first people in line at Fever were given. It was 1995, and I had just reconnected with a guy that I'd met four years earlier in a chance encounter but who had remained in my mind as the perfect man. When we met again, he had a girlfriend, and I refused to pay him any mind until he was single. I'd catch a glance of him at parties in illegal warehouses, both of us moving soundlessly through a crowd bathed in flashing lights, people doing all manner of ungodly things, as we synced in orbit, circling ever and ever closer. I was sixteen.

-Lauren Cerand (publicist, blogger, purveyor of elegance) 

Not even the fact that it seems to have become a go-to song for music supervisors who want to signify new love (or just plain old love) - I think it was used in That 70s Show, Adventureland and House, among others - could take away the memory of putting Big Star's "I'm In Love with a Girl" on the first mixtape I ever made for a girl. It's kind of obvious, I know, but discovering the music of Big Star and requited love at about the same time in one's life makes someone do obvious, stupid things. I didn't know I could feel this way, indeed. 

-Thierry Côté (music writer, Sonic Weapons) 

When I was 24, I used to go to Oakland to meet up with my friend Lucy. I'd known her for a year. I'd never considered her my type, although I don't think I'd even developed a preference for a type of girl at that point. I liked her mind, and she was a mind reader. They say Christ could size up a person from a mile away. She was that way, too. Lucy was very tall, as tall as me, and her face had a cartoon quality, like Lucy from Peanuts. She wore the same dress every single day. Whenever it suffered a seemingly irreparable tear, it would be fixed. Her father knew an excellent tailor. The man at the corner store would tell us, "You do not look right next to each other." At the Indian restaurant, the owner would ask "Where is Alan?" Everyone knew she was Alan's girl. Alan was my friend, too, and a good guy. One thing she and I had in common was that we both liked to walk long distances after dark. On one such walk, we found a pile of moldering trash on a bridge over a creek and started kicking it around and checking it out. A Wings LP where Paul and company stood waist deep in a creek, similar in appearance to the very creek the bridge ran over. The grooves of the record were covered in a very fine, bright green mold, like somebody crumbled a sponge up and mushed it in. I still have that copy.

She picked me up at the station as usual one day, and after driving a few blocks, pulled the car over. It took a moment to notice that she was weeping with her head against the steering wheel. I sat there and waited for her to say something. It's uncomfortable to see people cry. She had been dumped by Alan. I had some impulse to cheer her up, so we played Photo Hunt for several hours. Photo Hunt is a video game at bars on a little mini TV set, where you are offered two choices: Babes or Hunks. You get two pictures side-by-side, and you have to point at the screen wherever you see differences in the two images. All of the babes are topless. Photo Hunt's Babes and Hunks appear to exist between May and August of the year 1992.

Before that afternoon, I had never known with full confidence that I wanted to kiss someone and then followed through. I had never made a choice based on pure feeling. "Holocaust" by Big Star was on her record player. What I felt at that moment was something new and I've come to recognize as love: overwhelming relief, realizing you've finally found something you were wanting without being aware of it. I remember my chest did this weird thing, contracting involuntarily, and I laughed at the unfamiliarity of it. It is like you were standing on a small, vaguely uncomfortable stone in your shoe up until that point, and you knew nothing else. Falling in love is to have that stone removed by some trickery beyond your control. I had never expected Lucy would wear black underwear, and that was exciting, too. It felt like the cover of a VHS thriller, behind vertical blinds. She had another side I'd never known. "Holocaust," so complete in its cold beauty, felt like it was an entire side long, with endless verses upon verses. When I hear it now, it always surprises me how short a song it is. 

-Ryan Monsarrat 

I don't know if it was love, in hindsight, but when I was dating my first boyfriend in grade eleven, we were both listening to a lot of classic rock. My favorite band was The Who, and their song "Getting In Tune" was a song I would listen to constantly while laying awake at night thinking about how awesome it was to be into someone and have them be into you. This guy was a musician (he wrote music and played the piano- be still my young heart!) and so the whole musical metaphor aspect of the song really hit home. That was basically ten years ago, so obviously a lot has changed, but I still get some warm fuzzies when I hear that song. 

-Laura Maize (writer/editor, Burgundy Girls

This isn’t the first time I fell in love, but I have a distinct memory of, very early in my relationship, driving out to the drive-in, and listening to "Long, Long, Long" by the Beatles turned up very loud, and him resting his hand on mine as we drove down the highway and knowing – very suddenly and although it was only two weeks in – that I was very much on the way to falling deeply in love with this person. It was a moment of clarity during an uncertain time, since I didn’t want a boyfriend, but that moment solidified that it didn’t matter what it or him or we were called, but that I wanted it and I gave in. 

 -Amanda Caswell (writer/editor, Burgundy Girls

We played brother and sister in a Faulkner story and when he looked at me onstage, saying his lines, I knew he was looking through my cotton dress. Our first French kiss was two pitbulls lathering each other in drool, but it was the best thrill I’d ever gotten from a boy, him always looking at me like that, treating me like a new, exciting version of myself. He pled with me to capitalize “i love you” in my emails to him: “I Love You,” the way he wrote it, giving each word its due importance. He worked at the movie theater and I’d meet him there beneath the neon lights when his shift ended, and I didn’t pay to see a movie from 1999 to 2001. Then we’d crank the car windows down and jerk his junky black car to the edge of some deserted gravel road and screw around, dark wheat fields whispering and the fallen upholstery from the ceiling dropping lint into his hair. I was always getting ready to leave, about to drive the 45 minutes home, constantly late for curfew and ignoring the calls from my mom lighting up my Nokia. We were always crying, because we were teenagers and we were trying to be brave but we both needed too much desperate love from the other. We cried in our cars, parked in deserted lots behind boarded-up businesses, we cried in his sister’s treehouse, we cried in my bed, on the floor in the glow of his sleeping mother’s Christmas tree lights, blinking red and blue and green. We called it love but it wasn’t love, or if it was love it was only intermittent, or if it was love it was then it was the kind of love that is terrifying in its reach of how horrible and hard and bad for you love can be. 

He broke up with me on my parents’ couch between episodes of Jackass. I told him I was afraid that I wouldn’t be okay and he hugged me and said I would be fine. I wasn’t fine for a while and then my fineness crept back in. I found my copy of Exile in Guyville, which he’d paid for at a mall store when I picked it out and then complained about so often that I quit playing it around him. He was especially put off by “Flower,” all the explicit sex talk and singsong: every time I see your face, I get all wet between my legs. Every time you pass me by, I heave a sigh of pain. I listened to it over and over, tearing down gravel roads alone in my car, craving the punch of sadness, strong as lust, one following another until I felt ripe with blood and awake behind the wheel. 

 -Lindsey Gates-Markel (writer, You Are Among Friends

My first love was an intellectual, anti-social, critical-theory-loving punk who kind of alienated everyone. Sometimes I wonder why he was my first love; I think it was a combination of hormones, sexual chemistry and just deciding that it was time for a first love. We were enamored of one another for a time and there was a fervour and heat, but my persistent memory of our time together was really that of a near-constant agitation that I mistook for passion, perhaps. Maybe it was youthful folly, I don't know; I'm lucky in that my first love was awhile ago, and the ones I've had since have their own rich, poetic soundtracks. 

But it's fitting that the song I most closely associate with my first love is a really passionately agitated emo-punk love song, Rye Coalition's "Baby Puts Out Old Flames." I have a clear, diamond-like memory of my first love playing the 7-inch on the turntable in his apartment and kind of doing that punk shuffle-in-place moving-around-thing to it (NOT DANCING, he insisted.) It was a rare moment of fun for a super-serious boy who took himself way too seriously (as we all did back then, I guess), and I loved seeing how his head bent down and his shoulders sloped over as he listened to the music, the contours of them sticking out from underneath his t-shirt, swooping into the beautiful curve of his lower back. I sort of fell in love with him in that instance, actually, so maybe my love for him was more than hormones and a wistful longing for experience. 

-Kat Asharya (writer, filmmaker, subversive romantic) 

This is the hardest question to answer, because just like any red-blooded music geek, I've spent my life mainlining songs and albums as quickly as my brain could absorb them, and my memories are one long, nostalgic burst of sound -- my first love, like the rest, comes with a box set of smash hits that topped my charts. But after thinking about it for a few days, I guess I have to choose Michael McDonald's "Take It to Heart," for all the reasons I outlined in this post a couple of years ago. 

-Jeff Giles, (editor-in-chief, Popdose.com)

"Wild Horses." I was 17, and he was 25, and he played it for me on his guitar in a tree house in the foothills of the Sierras. Then he broke my heart. Then I broke his. 

-Frances Lefkowitz (author, To Have Not)

 Following an AIM conversation, he trekked 20 minutes across town to pick me up and get a Wendy's Spicy Chicken Sandwich. My mother invited him to my surprise 16th birthday and I thought I could murder her, his presence made me so nervous. He could swing an axe better than anyone else I knew, plus there was that ironic Iron Maiden sticker on his Volvo. He was my dream boy and for mysterious reasons, he chose me back.

We made each other countless mix CDs. He introduced me to Pavement and Pixies, rounding out my current Holy Trinity of Music. We listened to a lot of good stuff I still spin and we listened to a lot of crap. (I sometimes wore a pyramid belt, so.)

Weezer's "El Scorcho" talks about a crush in the most bizarre way. It's an appeal supported by logic but delivered in whoops and screaming and tumbling tom drum. This boy often signed off emails and love letters with the Weezer "w" ending his name. The lyrics are ridiculous and snobbish, just like us. We'd sing this loudly to each other, standing on the couch in his basement (our lair). Often he'd swap out "you" to his name, changing the line to say, Or maybe you're scared to say, 'I'm falling for Drew," and boy did I. Hard.

-Beca Grimm

It's probably pretty corny, but I've more than made my peace with it. Mos Def's "Ms. Fat Booty" is the song, for the very basic reason that the girl in the song had the same name as the girl in my life. It's a good song, definitely a highlight of Black On Both Sides, but I definitely roll my eyes at myself a little over it, shortly before reminding myself that I just gotta accept these things, because they're actually beautiful outside of my hypercritical mind. I don't remember if the song was an in-joke between us or not. I know she liked it, and I definitely played it for her the way you play things you think are important to you and should be to other people, too. The song ends in a break-up, which is different from what we ended up having. We never ended up together-together, just good friends that sometimes accidentally made a bad decision with each other on late nights every once and a while. 

-David Brothers (writer, 4thletter!)

Led Zeppelin, "The Rain Song." I lost my virginity to it. Every time I hear it, I think about one ridiculously hot night in August in a bedroom with no AC. 

-Niki Luparelli (chanteuse, hula-hooping comedienne, one half of the world-famous Steamy Bohemians)

"Karma Chameleon," Culture Club. That and the smell of clove cigarettes. 

-Erica Lorraine Scheidt (author, Uses for Boys)

This is a tricky question, because I don't know if we all share the same definition of "first love." I only just recently revised my thought on who my "first love" was, which is a good thing in terms of answering this question because there's a song I can name right away in response. When my "first love" and I were on one of several road trips we took, and I'm thinking it was the leg of the first trip where we drove along the southern U.S. from Florida to L.A. and up to NorCal, we loaded up the CD changer in the trunk of my car with a whole bunch of discs for the ride. When "San Berdoo Sunburn" by Eagles of Death Metal came on, I immediately latched onto the song's story of driving from the east coast to the west. Plus since EODM were sort of a half-joke band with stoner roots and a good dose of sexy to keep it exciting, it was even more appropriate 'cause that's a really good way to describe my "first love." Oh, fuck the quotation marks. She was my First Love. And for the record, those before her, even the ones I thought I was in love with, were cases of deep, intense infatuation. And I thank one of my other "first loves" for teaching me that. 

-Michael Fortes (writer, Popdose.com) 

"Listen to Me" by Buddy Holly. When ex-boyfriend Ryan and I first started dating, he made me a bunch of mix tapes, which were mostly full of songs by bands like The Zeros, The Ramones, Screeching Weasel, and The Vindictives. Which were often surprisingly romantic. But snotty. On one of the tapes, amid of all of the pop-punk was "Listen to Me," which became our song. It has a gentle calm and a pure sweetness that still reminds me of how that relationship was a safe home for me during all of the chaos that came with being young and in love and on my own for the first time in my life. 

-Sarah Tomlinson (writer, author, Duchess of Rock) 

Phoenix - "Long Distance Call": No, it has nothing to do with the title of the song. That would have been a lame choice. This was on the first mix I made for her, and she used to sing along with it, always smirking at the high note of "idea" in the first line Where to go I had no idEA. I had never really thought about it before but I'd laugh every time she'd exaggerate in her singing how high the vocals went at that word. It was really cute- what can I say? I was in love.

-Lee Levin (writer/editor, Knox Road)

The Ronettes' "Be My Baby." It was included on the first vinyl record I ever bought with my own money, the Dirty Dancing soundtrack. Purchased at Kmart in 1987. 

-Sarah Utter (artist, bassist/vocalist for Western Hymn)

 My first relationship was the longest I've ever had - two and a half years. I was fifteen. I met my first boyfriend on Myspace (I met my current boyfriend on Twitter).

My friends and I were totally obsessed with Jimmy because he was hot and 'did drugs.' I friended him (I'm not sure if it was actually called 'friending' on Myspace but I can't remember so whatever) and he instantly direct messaged me "cause im inlove with you." What a freak, right? I loved it though.

I went to public school and he went to the private school in the same area. We would talk on AIM. We'd talk a lot. I can't remember about what. His screen name was 'someantibiotics' and mine was 'jazzy203'. Lol.

I got my drivers' license and my first car (a pink Honda Civic) and we thought we should start hanging out. It was going to be great. Freedom! Love! Motor vehicles! A week later, I crashed my Honda Civic into a lake.

After the accident, our parents would drop us off at this coffee shop so we could hang out there for a few hours. Mostly we'd leave the coffee shop and make out in the parking lot. Adorable. Oh and we'd decided that we were officially beef and geef by this point.

A little while later, maybe four months later, I got my second car (a silver Dae Woo). He lived 30 minutes away from me but I'd drive there 3-5 times a week. We'd do cute things like get chinese food and eat it by the train tracks and he'd put quarters on the tracks so the trains could flatten them for me. And we'd wear necklaces of each other's blood and bones. Not real blood and bones, but we'd tell people otherwise. We'd also do a lot of drugs.

Jimmy made the best mixtapes ever. Any cool music I know about now is what I learned from him then. So beautiful and meaningful and vaguely druggy. Everything I loved about Jimmy. Anyway, I crashed my silver Dae Woo into a telephone pole on the way to Jimmy's house one day. I was listening to one of the mixtapes he made for me. "Love to Love" by Zwan was on this particular one. Jimmy and his dad came to my rescue and I was fine but my car was totaled (again). That silver Dae Woo sat in their driveway for like 6 months. The tape was jammed into the tape player and I never got it back.

We couldn't see each other for a while. I got addicted to cocaine and stole hundreds and hundreds of dollars from my father and cheated on Jimmy with a ton of cokehead losers. And we broke up a week before we both left for college. My car was towed and compacted with the mixtape still in it.

-Al Bedell (Al is _YOUNGBABY_ on Twitter and she's my fav, signed LJ)

"Wonderwall" by Oasis. It was the nineties. I was in high school, which meant things like going for aimless drives in the suburbs at night, parking at the edge of a construction site, climbing onto a bulldozer, looking at the blinking lights of the houses in the distance, making grand plans for your long life. When I first fell in love, it didn't last long, but it was filled with those kind of ordinary moments that high school kids infuse with so much intense, desperate meaning. Good for a song with lyrics like And all the lights that light the way are blinding.

-Samantha Garner (writer, clock&bell)

A year of holding each other on various beds, learning how to best become entangled. Heads curled into chests, torso over torso, legs across legs. It started at the beginning of summer, a summer of this tangling, and stretched into fall, winter, spring. It was winter that Nico’s "These Days" soundtracked the most, I think. Doug gave me Chelsea Girl for Christmas- the liner notes annoyed me, how they talked about Nico’s “flaxen hair” “long neck” and “tall lithe figure” in such boring, predictable ways, but I loved Chelsea Girl: it’s not catchy, but rather clings to you; it's haunting. In February I became so sad and despaired about the days I was wasting. I loved "These Days" because it captured sad, wasted, non-poetic time, poetically: a paradox. (These days I seem to think a lot/ about the things that I forgot to do…these days I’ll sit on cornerstones/and count the time in quarter tones to ten.) February proved to be the beginning of the end, and in the spring the year of entanglement was over.

 -Clara Lipfert

That would be "Apple Shampoo" by Blink 182. I loved this hockey player so much, and I remember listening to this record while I dyed his hair bright pink. My hair was bleached blonde and he dyed the front two pieces of my chin-length bangs bright pink, too. For Christmas, I got him the Blink 182 tour VHS cassette and he got me a Backstreet Boys calendar and a pet budgie. (His budgie had babies.) P.s. We were 'just friends' on his end.

-Kritty Uranowski (singer/songwriter, Patti Cake

I'd heard K-Ci & JoJo's "All My Life" like a million times and thought it was totally goofy and would make a big show about theatrically lip synching it at the dances hosted by my middle school cafeteria more or less every month. But one time, when this sad and funny, tall, skinny, blonde girl and I were "dating," and of course had to slow dance to it, I actually felt something. I got what these guys were talking about. Sure it was weird how religious they were about it, or how they were brothers who say Close to me you're like my brother, sort of to each other, but really, they were talking about what a relief it is to be in love! To feel this strange chemical pull, this union with another person! I mouthed the lyrics, not giving up on my joking half-smile, as I looked her in the eyes and really hoped she didn't feel my boner. 

-Pat Barrett (designer, illustrator, cartoonist)


  1. hanging out (& giving hjs) in his car in the auto shop behind the school on a blank hall pass ("suite: judy blue eyes") or, at night, in the municipal parking lot across the street from his best friend's house ("broken arrow" off decade)

    1. i wish people would leave us comments about neil young and hand jobs more often

    2. as co-president of SFW, i second lj's comment so hard