I'm not really all that mysterious

still chasing starlight/the relationship of music and spacetime

I think it might’ve been Sirius, the dog star, in the southern sky that lit my way tonight, like a beacon, brighter than the ambient glow of the urban sprawl before me, but I only have a faint grasp of celestialography, so I could be wrong.

Ten days until the sun finally halts its retreat and finally stands its ground. Twenty days until the year’s end, leaving me wondering about the future, and whether it’s even worth wondering at all.

The problem with driving down to San Diego with only my iPod as my companion is that I can get lost in the random music that it plays, dragging me through my memories, many of them dark and bitter. The following is not necessarily exact, but it serves as a rough guide.

  1. Vienna Tang “Harbor”
    hauntingly echoing my deepest desire, although perhaps something that will never come to pass in this lifetime.
  2. Semisonic “Singing in My Sleep”
    on the connector ramp from the Glendale Fwy southbound to the Golden State Fwy southbound, bringing back faint memories of nine years ago after leaving the Bay Area in defeat, and resigning myself to at least a year in limbo in L.A.
  3. Hooverphonic “Cinderella”
    past the junction of the Golden State Fwy with the Pasadena Fwy, on the way to the East L.A. Interchange. The rhythm of the song at first makes me think of “Bettie Davis Eyes” by Kim Carnes. Maybe this could be inspiration for a mashup.
  4. Amina “Hilli”
    speeding through Irvine, past the El Toro Y, making me think of something that might have been composed by Nobuo Uematsu for the theme of some imaginary town in some as-of-yet undrafted installment of Final Fantasy
  5. Aaliyah “Journey to the Past”
    as I wound my way through Laguna Niguel, remembering faint memories of ten Decembers past, and my heart not didn’t so much break, as it did just dry out. And still I dream of home.
  6. Hooverphonic “Battersea”
    through San Clemente. The lyrics are faint, leaving haunting traces in my mind.
  7. Nelly Furtado “All Good Things (Come to an End)”
    through Camp Pendelton. This song has captured my mind ever since I heard it for the first time this summer, and the answer is quite simple, and quite bitter.
  8. Frou Frou “Hear Me Out”
    probably either Oceanside or Carlsbad by this time.
  9. Feist “Secret Heart”
    probably Encinitas or Solana Beach. Reminding me of how so many words have died stillborn in my heart, freeze dried by despair, evaporated by helplessness.
  10. Sunny Day Real Estate “Song About an Angel”
    going past the merge, heading south on the 805
  11. S Club 7 “Never Had A Dream Come True”
    southbound on the 805 past La Jolla, through Clairemont Mesa, to the connector ramp to the southbound 163. This song always kills me, dragging me through the last ten years, and sticking a dagger right in my half-rotting, half-dessicated heart.
  12. Anggun “On the Breath of an Angel”
    exiting the 163 to Friar’s Road, remembering that even with the mess I could’ve turned everything into, she still saves me with her friendship.

It was pretty much ten years ago when I realized that my life would definitely not have a “happily ever after” ending. It’s not that I would necessarily live a tragic life, though. I mean, everyone has their regrets and failures that haunt them for the rest of their lives, right? At least that’s what I tell myself whenever I start feeling sorry for myself.

The more that time passes, the more it becomes apparent that the way things went down was inevitable. The moment came, I was tested, and I was found sorely wanting. I wasn’t meant to be the one, and that’s the way the cookie crumbles.

And yet, somehow, everything that has happened since seems to be an echo, a reverberation from that time long gone, and even this far out, I can’t seem to completely break free of my self-destructive patterns. It’s as if from that moment on, I was doomed. I was damned.

For a while, I’ve held out hope that things would change for me, that I would grow, that I would eventually have my chance for happiness someday. Even though I’ve wanted to give up, I’ve kept going, still keeping this ember of hope burning, still somehow hoping for some miracle.

I thought, “Oh God, my chance has come at last!”
but then a strange fear gripped me and I just couldn’t ask

—The Smiths “There is a Light That Never Goes Out”

I wonder how many years must go by before I must accept that my hope has run out. How many years must go by before I can just thrown in the towel, call it quits. Some things were never meant to happen.

Some are like water, some are like the heat
Some are a melody and some are the beat

—Alphaville “Forever Young”

I think, sometimes, of the curse of The Flying Dutchman, doomed to wander the seas until the end of time, never able to reach the shore. Or of Coleridge’s doomed Ancient Mariner, or perhaps the Wandering Jew. Bill Murray in “Groundhog Day.”

But I’m still hedging my bets. I also think of Schmendrick the Magician, cursed to never age until he learns the secrets of magic, and reaches his full potential. Maybe, still, maybe, I’ll meet a unicorn, and maybe even someone like Molly Grue, and while the story won’t necessarily end happily ever after, maybe I can at least find my way home again, and at least have some sort of peaceful end.

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