The cool light of Paris at the start of summer made me think of Rome and just how warm the light there is. You can see it in their paintings, the quality of sunlight changing with the city. It made me think about how our perception of the sun is filtered through the ground we stand on. The light reflecting off buildings, made of stone from the ground, light changed by the dust in the air, pulled from the ground, and even the paintings themselves, pigments suspended in oil so often sourced from the earth or the plants that grow in it. Someone told me the reason Arizona has the most stunning sunsets is because of the chemical composition of the sand in its desert. Same sun, different ground beneath my feet: how could the quality of light in Paris not be different than that in Rome?
What do we lose when we standardize things, mold our foods and our pigments and our bodies and our relationships towards sameness?
Even heartbreak feels different in Paris. Sorrow feels so beautiful and I found myself writing and writing and writing, trying to capture the feeling. Beautiful, ineffable, inevitable. Heartbreak back in New York feels colder, removed, analytical, a chemical taste in the back of my throat. I keep smiling where I want to cry.
I saw some tweet or meme or whatever the other day about an Italian man who was asked if he was ever unfaithful to his wife.
“Never!” He proclaimed, “Only twice!”
What is being unfaithful? I think we all know it’s more than just sex. Is it falling in love? Is it letting yourself imagine a different life, one with someone else? What about when you build a wall so impenetrable that the ones who love you can’t reach you anymore? Is that keeping the faith?
I fall in love at the drop of a hat. I fall in love when I see a bit of someone’s earnest self, in their art or home or the way they hold their phone. I’m always chasing after people and their little hidden beauties. Sometimes people see this in me and they love it, but sometimes it scares them. They want to be special by nature of exclusion, not on the basis of their own inextricable beauty.
I prefer my passionate love affairs with people who know they’re hot, who know there’s no need for games because they’ve captured my interest on their merits alone. Who don’t try to hide because they know I love them, mess and all. Who aren’t afraid to cry when they’re feeling sad so I can hold them or blow up my phone with double texts of love! Who know how to take space so that I have a chance to miss them, who put their phones away when we’re talking so we can just be together. People who will tell me about their romances with other lovers and people who will make art with me, paintings or photos or music, who will write me little love poems at a whim. I want to watch their careers take off and their bank accounts fill up while mine do the same! International love affairs, lovers I see in a new city every time, little private getaways on remote islands where we spend all day naked in each others arms and all night making something of beauty.
And isn’t that the point of hot girl summer? Sweet and beautiful flings. But both “summer” and “fling” imply a certain duration and I never want it to end. After all, I’m still in love with people I met in preschool! If I fall in love with someone, I’m never getting over them. I’ll want them by my side for the rest of my life!
Somehow I kept ending up in relationships with people who wanted to keep me in a type of cage. They’re beautiful cages, well stocked with everything I could dream of, good food and good sex, romance, diamonds and designer clothes, everything I could ever ask for and more. But even though it’s so comfortable, I can’t stay forever. I need to run around in the mess of the world, falling in love and feeling everything. I don’t want a cage, but a little nest I can land in every night. I want to have my cake and eat it too ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
One of my closest friends makes the yummiest hyperpop and jersey club remixes. Pure serotonin jolts straight to the brain. I’ve told him to post them online so I can listen to them whenever I want, but for now I just get the privilege of hearing them whenever I visit him in the Bay Area. Recently we were chatting about how both genres feel like an actual drug - listen to them long enough and your brain will get a lil crazy.
I made this playlist for him in an attempt to include other songs that felt like they had a similar effect. It reminds me of late nights chugging Red Bull and playing video games with my bros in high school. There’s sadly so many t3rrible remixes I couldn’t include, because they’re not on Spotify. It’s funny tracing back how I first came into contact with these different genres. Anime openings that I later looked up, video game music, random YouTube videos, browsing 4chan… And of course, one my first long distance internet romances when I was 14 with a 16 year old math genius who lived in Bristol and was always going out to dnb raves… At the time, I fully believed he was the coolest person I would ever meet!
This kind of high intensity music is very online, and it makes sense that as we as a society spend more and more time on the internet, genres like these become even more pervasive.
I’ve always liked this type of music, but it’s always been a secret, guilty pleasure… Don’t judge me!!