Thursday, January 19, 2012

here we go...

I’m coasting down PCH with my head resting against the window and my eyes focused on everything, but nothing in particular. Though I lost my concept of time somewhere in the four months I spent abroad in London, I know it’s around 5:30 p.m. because the sun has just about melted into the sea, probably stirring Japanese schoolchildren to wake on the other side of the Pacific. I’m nearly submerged in a daydream in which I’m discussing the elusive white truffle with Anthony Bourdain when the faintly familiar tune pouring from the speakers pulls me out of my daze. Predictably (if you know me well), I’m now on edge, but I quickly jot down the thoughts that have flooded my mind. No need to be alarmed, I don’t condone drafting and driving; I just forgot to mention that my best friend’s at the wheel. That’s the beauty of best friendships, innit? That you can sit in total silence for long stretches of time on a short drive to nowhere without the pressing need to fill the void with routine conversation. Anyway, the point is that this song caused a cascade of memories to rush back to me, and while neither the song nor the memory that it triggered is relevant today, the connection between music and memory is. Cue the blog.

If there were one thing I could change about myself it would be my proclivity toward short-lived, dramatic sentimentality. I hold on to things of the past with deranged insistence, but only for a short while – a month or so – and then they disperse into the hiding places of my mind. But music has been a remedy of sorts to this. It’s been an outlet to relieve the initial onset of nostalgia, and a capsule that keeps the memories safe until it’s time to revisit them again. Maybe this is relevant to you, maybe not. In either case we might not have much common. I’m a bright eyed and bushy tailed twenty-one-year-old college student, a self-proclaimed music snob, and a hardcore movie buff. In a month I’ll embark on an endless journey to make my mark in advertising, but for now, I’m enjoying my final days in college by making as many interminable memories and impressions that hopefully won’t be interminable to my psyche and/or face. If we are anything alike, it’s probably that we both find joy, solace, and melancholy in memories. And if there’s any reason for you to continue reading, even if it means enduring a few rants about songs I never want to hear again, it’s that you’re lost in the mystery of sound and musing, too, and want to measure your sanity against mine.

While the link between music and memory isn't a new concept and has been discussed in a variety of contexts, my promise is to shed light on this phenomenon through a different lens: a collection of my stories and my friends'.

Although I am an active participant in our manufactured culture (yes, contrary to what you Lana Del Rey haters may think, ALL of it is contrived), I consciously distance myself in order to analyze what’s going on and write about it. My self-awareness defines me. I’m fascinated by our generation, which seemingly has no identity, but borrows that of every past generation since the 20’s. I will ruminate on this through a discussion about the quickly burgeoning nostalgia industry, which is based on the capitalization of  nostalgia-inducing goods, selling memories of idealized times. On second thought, this may be considered another ode to the niche of blogs that have arisen in the category of observation, a craft that I admire. However you'd like it, there is much to look forward to in the upcoming weeks. For now, I'll leave you with this:

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