Sunday, September 08, 2013

Looking Back at High School or Songs that Capture a Mood: “Carry You”

"Carry You" opened ALL's eighth, and possibly last, studio album, 2000's Problematic.  The song is a lament to a former lover that explains that even though the relationship is long over, that she had a lasting effect on his life.



Once upon a time I thought I couldn't live without you
Fifteen years gone, I've come a long way without you
And if we ever meet again I got a piece of you my friend
I carry you with me
I see you now, we've got nothing in common
We’ve come a long way from Buckhorn and Top Ramen
But I remember every fight every crazy naked night
I carry you with me
I carry you with me
To every unfamiliar skyline that i seeYou’re there enshrined in memoryWhere friendship never diesI carry you with me
Every evening every day
Every morning D.O.A.So much left unsaidThat well never get to say
'Cause high school drop outs don’t go to reunions
What’s the point? I’m under no delusions
I wonder wherever you are todayDo you carry me the wayI carry you with me?I carry you with me
This weekend was my 20 year high school reunion.  Needless to say I didn’t go.  My senior year of high school was a strange year for me.  I moved to OKC from Lakeland, FL during the summer of 1992, which happened to be the summer between my junior and senior years of high school.  Here’s the thing, I hate, HATED my high school in Florida.  Lakeland Senior High School was a horrible place to go if you weren’t one of the cool kids, but as a result those of us who we shunned and looked upon as misfits bonded and created a very tightknit group of friends.  So while I was happy to be getting away from that school, I was devastated to be leaving my friends.  The school year that followed was fairly bizarre for me.  I didn’t know anyone at the school and trying to find friends, especially as a senior at a new school, wasn’t easy.  Also, the social situations at Westmoore High School (i.e. the cliques) were drastically different from those in FL, so not only did I not know anyone, I really couldn’t make sense of the different groups within the school’s population.  Eventually I met some really nice kids, one of which I eventually married, but even then it never felt like a community.  I never felt like I fit in.  So with when I heard about the 20 year reunion, I had zero desire to go.  Sure there are some folks that I would love to see and catch up with but the vast majority of my graduating class, I never knew.  On top of all of that, there’s the fact that I have been an abysmal failure as an adult, so the thought of being around a bunch of people that I don’t know and getting to tell the few that I do know that I pretty much suck at life isn’t a pleasant one. 

The pending (and now past) reunion has caused me to look back and reflect on things; to think about the people that touched my life and the events that helped mold me into the person I am today.  Those years in Lakeland, while some of the hardest and most unpleasant, were also monumental.  Since moving to Oklahoma, I’ve never felt like I had a real community.  Yes I’ve had friends and a family and I’ve participated in the local music scene, but with the exception of the zine years in the mid to late 90s and my time working at Sprint (where I did have a close-knit group of friends), I’ve felt like an outsider.  Normally one would go look at old pictures and yearbooks, when feeling nostalgic but at some point in my 20s, I threw all of that stuff away.  Needless to say, I regret that decision. 

For me, ALL’s “Carry You” is my old pictures and yearbooks.  This song reminds me of those times from school and my youth.  It takes me back to high school and junior high and even earlier and helps me see those face that have long since passed from my life but nevertheless are with me every day.  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dave! I just saw the link to this from your FB, and had to say: you cannot possibly suck at life, because too many people think you're great! You have an infectiously awesome attitude.

Also, I love this post b/c I've been thinking--and writing--a lot about my high school years lately, and especially about music, and also going through a lot of "lack of community" feelings. And this is why I love the internet: I always find out that I'm not alone, and that what I'm going through is something that someone else probably is too, and that helps immensely for some reason.

So, thanks for sharing, and keep on keepin' on. Maybe you can rock the next reunion...you know, the one after you win the lottery? ;)

--Susan B. (you know, from I.S.)