Let’s talk about six

Today marks the sixth year of my blog. It also marks the one year anniversary of the post where I swore to never move again, and look where that got me. As is tradition on this auspicious day,I’m recapping the last year in the life of this blog in the hopes of finally learning my lesson to stop making veiled threats to the universe, as it has a much darker sense of humor than me.

I also learned that pairing music to alcohol should be left to professional DJs and Pitbull. But, undoubtedly, the greatest lesson I learned in the last year of blogging is that love is greater than marriage, but marriage is pretty fucking great.

Just before this anniversary, I arrived newly wedded to a brand new city, where I can’t pronounce anything right. And now that I’m finally getting my bearings, I can’t wait for another year of gargantuan mistakes.bedazz

Happy anniversary Relativity!

Hearing in paired: Whiskey

Some people feel and taste colors. Other people associate feelings with sounds. Me? Well, I drink in music. In this blog series, I pour myself a glass and pair 10 sips to 10 songs. Today, I’m drinking whiskey and it tastes like angry drum beats and dirty guitar riffs. 

Good ol’ whiskey. Or is it whisky? Or is it Scotch?

Well, whiskey or whisky is ultimately the same thing. Some argue that you should spell it with an ‘e’ if it’s distilled in the United States. While others claim that the difference in spelling is a style choice, similar to color versus colour. And Scotch is just whiskey/whisky from Scotland.

So you see, everything about this simple beverage is overly complicated, with its many options to consider, from a blend to a single malt to the years its aged to the country of its birth. Yet, its popularity is unwavering. I dare you to try to take away Fireball Cinnamon Whisky from American twenty-somethings. They might be grossed out by gluten, but high amounts of propylene glycol (the ingredient that got Fireball banned in parts of Europe) is perfectly all right. And connoisseurs pledge allegiance to a brand, as I once witnessed a Johnnie Walker drinker thumb his nose at a perfectly poured glass of Glenlivet.

As for me, I don’t hold fealty to any particular brand and am only an occasional whiskey drinker because it tends to bring out my least endearing qualities. Yet, for the scientific purposes of this blog series, I poured myself a glass of the 12 year old Scotch blend of Chivas Regal (over tons of ice) and paired my first ten sips to ten songs that captured what I was tasting and feeling.

Whiskey Sounds

Sip 1 – Boys Wanna Be Her by Peaches

The bass drum matched my heart beat as I let out a deep exhale, followed by a gulp. As soon as the liquid heat touched my tongue, I felt like I’d been challenged to a fight in a parking lot. Only my opponent was the whiskey and the only way to kick its ass was to drink it all.

Sip 2 – Walking Backwards by Leagues

I felt my face contort until I swallowed and then I slammed the glass on the counter because I immediately regretted this stupid idea. I grabbed the edges of the counter top with both hands and let the liquid run through my body like the bass line of this song.

Sip 3 – No Angel by Dark Like Snow

The third sip was much smoother than the first two. My body stopped fighting the whiskey, allowing it to run its course through my veins, my joints and my muscles.

Sip 4 – Breaks Me Down by Stars and Crosses

I felt the warmth of the fourth sip on my face, which tricked me into momentarily wanting to relax, but just like the midway point of this song, I became hyper and irreverent shortly after.

Sip 5 – For This I Can’t Be Sure by Sunparlour Players

I became chatty and loud. As many times as the title of this song gets repeated as a lyric, I too attempted to explain a simple concept by just saying it over and over again.

Sip 6 – People Are Strange by Johnny Hollow

I convinced myself that everyone else is the problem. I wasn’t able to pin-point what that problem was, but there was one and they had it.

Sip 7 – Middle of the Road by The Pretenders

Out loud, without prompting and without reason, I said, “Fuck everybody,” which is what I think the guitar riff is really saying in this song.

Sip 8 – Walkin up the Road by Betty Davis

My throat is raw for some reason. Maybe because for the eighth time I’ve poured gasoline down my trachea. I feel like my voice now sounds like Betty Davis – both the white one and the black one.

Sip 9 – I Know What I Am by Band of Skulls

It never fails. This libation brings out the worst in me. And by the ninth sip, I had in fact convinced myself that I was infallible, invincible and maybe even invisible as well. I let my mind wander to places of paranoia and regret. And then look at my glass for my tenth and final sip.

Sip 10 – I Want To Be Your Joey Ramone by Sleater-Kinney

After the gulp, I stared at the glass and wiped my upper lip with the tips of my fingers. I regretted doing this experiment on an empty stomach. And then I remembered it didn’t matter because I’m a rock star in the rough. “I wanna be your Joey Ramone/Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah/Pictures of me on your bedroom door.”

Below is a full list of the 10 songs for my 10 sips:

And, of course, an after photo of the whole ordeal for posterity:

After

Five days of gratitude: People, places and things

I had to take a momentary pause from the five days of gratitude challenge because I was in France at the secret wedding of my ex-girlfriend.

We had an awkward moment when she suggested we do it one more time, “for old times’ sake,” but I declined because I didn’t want to ruin my makeup.

I did however agree to be her maid of honor just to irk her new husband. I made sure to wink at him throughout the entire ceremony. Afterwards, him, George Clooney and I drank cheap scotch and smoked expensive cigars (which I brought) and laughed the whole thing off.

I wasn’t allowed to take photos, but this is basically what the ceremony looked like:

From PinkertonPhoto.com
From PinkertonPhoto.com

Anyway, I don’t think my hiatus was a big deal because the rules of the challenge do not specify that the five days have to be in consecutive order. So, without further ado, my three most wonderful things I’m grateful for today are:

People. I’m thankful for smart people that are working to fix, help, improve the lives of other people. I’m thankful for people with special needs that teach me to be patient, kind and humble. I’m thankful for mean people whose actions remind me of the need to be more empathetic to compensate for their lack of humanity. I’m thankful for the people who drive well, for the people that sing in the car and for the people that are brave enough to say good morning to me, even when I’m wearing sunglasses indoors.

Places. I’m grateful for places that have taken my breath away, from the Napali Coast to the Amalfi Coast. I’m grateful for the places that broke my heart, like Managua and Havana. I’m grateful for the places that give me hope, like San Francisco and New Orleans. I’m grateful to Miami for welcoming my parents when they were kicked out of their country. And I’m really grateful for the existence of Las Vegas.

Things. I appreciate my musical instruments, as they remind me of all of the different ways I can ruin a good song. I appreciate music in general and the way it makes me feel. I begrudgingly appreciate how it makes me move, especially when I’ve been drinking. I appreciate a quiet spaghetti dinner at home equally as much as a really nice dinner at The Palm. And I appreciate having the money to indulge in either.

I’m also really thankful for YouTube.