Wednesday, December 18, 2013


I wanna be Taylor Swift.

Not for her nasally voice. I think I’ve got that already. Not for her fame. I wouldn’t be able to handle the paparazzi. (My side profile shots are frightening.) And not for her closetful of trophies. Nothing could ever top my fifth place ribbon I won earned as a seven-year-old in the neighborhood watermelon seed spitting contest. (In truth, there were no ribbons. But it was a moment. With six of us participating, it was the first athletic endeavor wherein I didn’t come last. A victory of sorts. I fashioned my award by tearing a strand from my bed sheet, thinking my mother would never notice. That’s another story...)

I want to fall in love like Taylor does. Swiftly. Did her name create a self-fulfilling prophecy? Perhaps I’ll change my last name. Forget Swift. I’m no groupie. How about Lovemore? Or Firstglance? No, I think I’ll go with (You Had Me at) Hello. Why not? If kids are getting names like Apple and 7, I am going to be James (You Had Me at) Hello. Nice ring to it, no? And I like the parenthetical homage to The Carpenters’ “(They Long toBe) Close to You”. No one else will make the link, but the name is for me.

Perhaps as James Hello I’ll become socially ept. (Clearly, I’ve mastered inept. Why can’t I be ept? No such thing?! By god, how am I supposed to right things?) Maybe the whole name thing needs more thought.

Back to Taylor Swift. This is a woman who falls in love. A lot. True, guys line up for her. Fame, money, trophies. Maybe I’ll go back to wearing my bed-sheet ribbon.

Joe Jonas.

Taylor Lautner.

John Mayer.

Jake Gyllenhaal. (Ah, Jake. This one was the keeper, Taylor.)

Conor Kennedy.

Harry Stiles.

These are all brief relationships. According to my trusty Wiki research, none has exceeded four months. But Taylor would never call them “flings”. Love. Truly, Madly, Deeply. (Aside: Whatever happened to SavageGarden?)

For me, it’s not about the fact the relationships end. My focus is on getting something to start. For the past decade, I’ve been this sad sack, stranded on a quasi-island, failing miserably at survival. Lots of rubbing stones together to try to make a spark, a fire. Nothing. No matches. No light.

Taylor believes in love. Taylor finds love. She is known for bashing her exes in song, but her lyrics are also laced with hope and romance. Listen to “Love Story” again. “Today Was a Fairytale”. Sense the longing in “Teardrops on My Guitar” or “You Belong with Me”. All summer her duet with Ed Sheeran, “Everything Has Changed”, squiggled through my brain like an earworm. It amused me as a tale of falling fast.

All I knew this morning when I woke
Is I know something now, know something now I didn't before.
And all I've seen since eighteen hours ago
Is green eyes and freckles in your smile
In the back of my mind making me feel right.

'Cause all I know is we said, "Hello."                            [As in (You Had Me at)!]
And your eyes look like coming home
All I know is a simple name
Everything has changed.
All I know is you held the door
You'll be mine and I'll be yours
All I know since yesterday is everything has changed.

The jaded part of me dismisses it all as the thinking of a young mind. So naïve. So open. I was that once. An ex (and his mother; both cynical) once described me as a deer in the headlights: innocent, hopeful, and wholly unaware of the harshness ahead. Now I am guarded. I’ve been cheated on, abused and, of late, completely passed over. Yes, Taylor, there is a country song in me if I can ever feel comfortable leaving off word beginnings endings and tossin’ ‘round apostrophes.

But I’d like to get back to being hopeful or, at the very least, suspending disbelief.

Hope is a start. Opportunity is another hurdle. Someone hold the door. Green eyes and freckles or not, show me that smile.

I can’t keep rubbing rocks together. I have no interest in being on “Survivor”. I need a spark, a flame, some warmth. Bring it on. 

1 comment:

Rick Modien said...

Taylor Swift is nothing if not over-rated, couldn't agree more about Jake Gyllenhaal, and you are much too hard on yourself, RG.