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The musings of a 20-something songwriter living in LA..

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Why We Do What We Do

6.27.23


The feeling of nostalgia is similar to a feather finally hitting the floor— it’s not loud, it’s not quick, but suddenly something is different, warm. I have it a lot when I hear songs that were pivotal in certain chapters of my life. Currently listening to “shampoo bottles” by peach pit which was blasted daily in my grandmas 2007 venza she let me borrow when I was living back in Ann Arbor in the fall of 2020. I had it on a playlist called Virgo season since I was living with 3 others virgos in a big blue house in kerrytown. I often get hit by nostalgia from growing up in Michigan— but especially the feeling of being in Glen Arbor on a sunny and 72 day when you walk out of a shadow and into the sunlight and exhale and feel the warmth on your face. I find that this specific feeling or memory often happens when I’m not actually in Michigan, but it’s how I often decipher if I feel safe or happy. It happens in those really tiny moments when you see a certain view or remember a certain moment that the warmth appears.

I just got done teaching a summer program at Berklee and I’m on a flight back to Los Angeles. I live there now– that’s weird to say or, more correctly, think in my head and then write down. I just finished watching the last Mrs. Maisel episode and I felt that little feeling of warmth and nostalgia. Someone asked her in the last episode why she does comedy, and her answer is something that I’ve been telling myself for the past year. She says, "if I could do anything else, literally anything else [that would make her happy] I would do it."


I think about that all the time as I’m stuck in traffic on the 101 coming from work and going to a session and eating a granola bar in the car, why do I do it? Sometimes the answer is, I don’t know— it’s the only thing that gets me out of bed each day or I just can’t imagine stopping. But in those moments that the nostalgia hits— at a leith ross concert or when I hear the 'day-of' bounce for my new favorite song, that’s why I do it. For the moments where life isn’t just good, but it’s on an entirely new plane of happiness that I thought could only be discovered when super fucked up. So that’s why we do it right? The little brilliances.

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