Sunday, March 5, 2017

Time for Top Ten List of Favorite Songs Again

Image result for nate ruess
Nate Reuss is a genius even if he doesn't look like one.

     My brother and I are both off this weekend, which is vaguely a nice thing, as we had seen very little of each other in the past two weeks. I had almost forgotten what he looks like. One of our fellow students -- an older (early thirties) and mildly eccentric student I have nicknamed Raptor Jesus II after the original Raptor Jesus from the Recovery from Mormonism message board -- brought a few friends from our cohort to Matthew's and my condo to jam with us. We called a few other friends and ordered pizza, then got out instruments to make music. 

     Raptor Jesus II has eclectic tastes.  He came with a list of songs he wanted to play which included works from Elvis, the Beatles, the Monkees [probably because he knows I like them], Billy Joel, CCR, the Eagles, Queen, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Bruno Mars, Survivor, Elton John, either Jefferson Starship or Starship [I don't know which songs are from which], Kansas, Fun, and a few others. We stopped at 10:00 because we were probably a bit noisy. We didn't get any complaints, but it seemed wise to quit before we got any.

     Musical nights like tonight always cause me to reevaluate my top ten list of songs. My list of favorite songs is constantly evolving and quite arbitrary. My playlists are similarly transient.  I don't base my "favorite" list on anything except what I feel like hearing at the precise time. I shall make my list, which consists of only song that have charted since the 1960's or so. Not a whole lot of good popular music happened before then in my opinion.  People allowed truly odd music to be popular before 1950. Some classical music is wonderful, but I don't try to compare it to or to contrast it with popular music. The two are entirely different, and each has its place. Ditto with Broadway songs, which I typically am less drawn to than the classics, but there's still some excellent music from those sources. If the songs haven't charted, though, they won't appear on my list.

                               Alexis' List of Favorite Songs

1. We Are Young / Fun (I'm quite convinced that this is the greatest song ever written. Nate Reuss is a genius.)
2. House at Pooh Corner / Kenny Loggins or Loggins & Messina (This is a relic from my childhood but it never grows old to me.)
3Hey Jude / the Beatles (The world as we know it would have continued to exist had there not been the Beatles.)
4. Allentown/ Billy Joel (My list will probably always have a Billy Joel song on it, but not necessarily the same song each time.)
5. Bohemian Rhapsody /Queen (The song speaks for itself.)
6. Rocket Man / Elton John  (Elton John composed many great songs; Bernie Taupin was the lyricist for most including "Rocket Man." This one's a bit out there, but it's good nonetheless.)
7. Sister Christian / Night Rider (While I'm far from the most devout adherent to Christianity on the planet, I relate to this song.)
8. I Can't Get No Satisfaction / the Rolling Stones (I like any song House ever quoted or played on his show. He quoted this one in the pilot. The song is truer than true, and some people need to hear it.)
9. Good Riddance / Green Day (My friend Claire liked this one, and if Claire liked it, it gets "favorite" status with me.)
10. The Desiderata / Les Crane (The Desiderata itself is a work of prose, but it did chart, and a section in the middle is set to music, so it's eligible. I memorized this work to get out of giving a speech when I was in the eighth grade, and it's still a calming influence in my life ten years later. I was wise to have memorized this rather than to have given a speech.)

     On an unrelated note, Matthew was supposed to have called the guys in security at the gate of our condo complex to tell them we had ordered pizza. He forgot to do so. The guards let the pizza guy in without calling to check with us. (A few times Mormon missionaries have been let in as well. The manager of our complex would probably go into cardiac arrest if he knew about the Mormons invading the place.)That bothered me. Would they let any psycho or pervert or psychotic pervert into the complex as long as he had pizza (or Book of Mormon) with him or her? Usually pizza delivery people are in logoed cars, but not always, and besides, any axe murderer could put a logo on a car. I didn't want to tell on the security guys because I would feel terrible if someone were fired over doing something he thought was a favor to us, and one never knows how someone's employer will deal with him or her over an error in judgment. Instead, I drove my car to the gate [it was after dark] to discuss it with them. They saw my point and say they will check on all food delivery people in the future but that traffic was starting to back up in that lane, so they buzzed the gate and let him through because he looked legit. I personally think it would be better if all food delivery people had to be met at the gate by whomever ordered the food, but I understand how that's not very practical.  

     The security force is relatively competent here. Two people are on duty at night. If someone is sick or otherwise off, either the manager or assistant works it or one of the daytime people gets overtime. I've only called them about something problematic only once, but a security officer was at my door less than two minutes after I called. The jobs supposedly pay better than most security jobs around here, which they should with the homeowner fees my parents pay every month. Most of us are also generous at Christmas. Good security people are worth it. (The same is true of the Mr. Fixit guy.) There's only been one turnover since Matthew and I moved in, and the manager sent both emails and snail mail to us with the new guy's picture so we would know he wasn't an imposter. I think the people who work here are actually more paranoid than I am, which is fine with me.

     We're not a great place for prowlers anyway because the complex is surrounded by a ten-foot wall, and it's known locally that the place has so many security cameras and alarms on the premises that prowlers would presumably have better luck elsewhere. Supposedly an alarm will sound in the security office and their computers tell them where the wall was breached if anything weighing more than 25 pounds lands on the top of any part of the brick wall. It's set at 25 pounds so that a cat fat enough to weigh that much couldn't make it up there to set off the alarm. Most of the condos including ours have sophisticated security systems, too.  It probably sounds excessive, but I sleep better with the precautions. The world is crazy everywhere, but we're near a crazier-than-average loony tunes population. This is Zodiac Killer country -- probably safer than central Florida, where some of the stranger crimes that have ever happened took place, but not a whole lot safer.


  1. That's a good list of songs. I concur.

  2. You should try to be as safe as possible but there is a saying that I like: "None of us are getting out of this alive." I remember the good old days where you and I would talk about Good Riddance by Green Day. My memory is not perfect and is scattered by strong emotions but didn't you say to me that your father sung Good Riddance at Claire's funeral in a comment?

    There is a very sad movie (no one dies) called The Way We Were. There was a great love story but it was over and they moved on.

  3. Interesting list. I have heard of most of them, but withdrew from the cultural world for a decade or so back in the 80's. My list is also subject to change.
    What kind of a place do you live in where you need that level of security? That is pretty scary to me. I think living that way would make me paranoid every time I left the compound. Even the word "compound" is disconcerting.

  4. I love Spotify because it keeps track of your most played songs over the course of a year, and then towards the end of December they email you stats like your most played artist/band, most played song, most played genre ... it's fun to see unexpected things pop up. I went through a Justin Bieber phase this past summer. I swore I'd never ever listen to, or be into JB ... but, you know, never say never, right? I take it as a sign of the impending apocalypse ...

    Every week, Spotify also takes what you frequently listen to and compiles a list of similar tracks, and I've discovered so many new artists and songs from that too.

    Anyway ... this is not a weird spam comment for Spotify ... it's think it's cool to keep track of this kind of stuff without having to put a lot of thought into it.