I am spending way too much time in my car

I’ve been spending so much time in my car lately, ferrying the kids hither and yon, that I’ve thought seriously about audiobooks.  My problem, though, is that I simply can’t listen to books in dribs and drabs.  One complicated left turn and I’ve completely lost the thread of the story.

I can listen to talk radio, but the dribs and drabs of carpooling mean that, as often as not, I get seven minutes of commercial, and then one minute of Rush or Sean — and then, I usually catch them just waffling on, rather than making substantive points.  It’s a bad investment of my time.

There’s always the phone, of course, but there are only so many times I can call and then hang up upon my long-suffering sister.  With infrequently occurring exceptions, my other friendships are not “phone friendships.”  The phone, therefore, is out too.

All of which, of course, leaves me listening to the radio.  I used to listen to the music of my youth, but that depressed me.  Whether the music reminded of good times when I was young or bad times when I was young, what really mattered was that it reminded me that I am no longer young.

What to do?

I listen to today’s pop music.  As rap finally and thankfully seems to be fading away, today’s young singers seem to be rediscovering the beauty of melody (not that their melodies are always so beautiful).  I’ve written here before about my possibly inexplicable fondness for Hot Chelle Rae.  I also like One Direction.  I know they’re generic, superficial pop, but I really appreciate the reverence their music displays for the object of any given song’s affection.  It’s surprisingly rare to hear women treated so well, if only in a pop song.

I could go on about the songs I like (and on and on), but I won’t torture you that way.  This post is about two songs, and this post comes about only because I’ve been in the car enough to hear the songs dozens of times.  The songs are Adele’s Rolling in the Deep and Fun.’s We Are Young.  Both of them have been mega hits, but that’s not why I’m writing about them.  I’m writing because, just yesterday, I realized that these two songs are a matched set!  They are, truly.

Here’s how it goes:

Adele’s Rolling in the Deep is about her ex who done her wrong, leaving her with scars.  (I emphasize that word because it’s important to the pairing.)

The scars of your love remind me of us
They keep me thinking that we almost had it all
The scars of your love, they leave me breathless
I can’t help feeling
We could have had it all
(You’re gonna wish you never had met me)
Rolling in the deep
(Tears are gonna fall, rolling in the deep)
You had my heart inside of your hand
(You’re gonna wish you never had met me)
And you played it, to the beat
(Tears are gonna fall, rolling in the deep)

Well, I figured out that Adele must have been dating the Fun. guy, because in We Are Young, he clearly wants her back — and is trying to apologize for those scars:

Give me a second I,
I need to get my story straight
My friends are in the bathroom getting higher than the Empire State
My lover she’s waiting for me just across the bar
My seat’s been taken by some sunglasses asking ’bout a scar, and
I know I gave it to you months ago
I know you’re trying to forget
But between the drinks and subtle things
The holes in my apologies, you know
I’m trying hard to take it back
So if by the time the bar closes
And you feel like falling down
I’ll carry you home . . . Tonight

If we could just do an Adele/Fun. mash-up, there might still be a happily-ever-after here.  Either that, or I need to get out of my car and get a life.

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  • Cheesestick

    I ride my bike or walk/jog daily and have the same problem as you.  One suggestion I have is if you have an iphone, download the Clear Channel “iheartradio” app.  You still have the problems w/ the commercials, but when there is nothing good on your local talk stations you can pull up talk stations anywhere in the country.  I listen daily to Armstrong & Getty, which broadcasts out of your city on 910am (which I’m sure you probably know already, but just in case you don’t, they are really funny).  Next is Rush of course, every city, every station.  Then in the afternoon I like to listen to Mark Belling on WISN.  I am slightly ashamed to admit I know far more about what goes on in Wisconsin & California than in my own state.    The other thing I would strongly suggest is trying audible.com.  I know you think you won’t be able to catch it all…I thought the same thing before I tried it.  Mainly because it seems like no matter what I’m listening to or what is on TV, my mind travels (at least until the next Geico commercial comes on, lol).  TV especially doesn’t keep my attention. I really thought listening to a book would present the same challenge.  A while back though, audible.com was running a special for new subscribers so I gave it a shot.  Now I absolutely love it.  It really does draw me in, just like when reading an actual book.  And because I can listen every day while out exercising or while washing dishes or laundry, etc., I’m getting to “read” lots of books I would have never gotten around to reading it the old fashioned way. PS – I’m not a paid troll for any of these companies.  I just enjoy the heck out of both apps & thought I’d share.      

  • http://bookwormroom.com Bookworm

    That’s a great idea, Cheesestick.  I’ll check it out.  There are certain times that are such terrible wastelands when it comes to radio.

  • Kevin_B

    I cannot really comment on today’s pop music. I honestly know just about nothing about it, and I’m much younger than you, Bookworm. Why is that? Because I don’t listen to today’s pop and rock music. I’m a metalhead, and I also love old rock music and classical music (that does sound weird, doesn’t it?). That’s what I listen to. I spend little time in the car and I only very rarely listen to the radio. 
     
    What I do know, it that Adele, compared to others, seems more wholesome. Just based on a small piece of lyrics… it doesn’t seem as bad as some of the stuff that’s out there. Also, notice Adele is most often dressed more modestly, yet very stylish and feminine, compared to some of her colleagues. I could of course be totally wrong here. 
     
    As for recommendations on what to do… I don’t really have much to say, Bookworm. I will only say this. I don’t know if you like classical music, but I find to be rather bearable and even somewhat pleasant to listen to while traveling, like in a car. And it’s certainly less irritating than a lot of today’s pop music, and especially much of the crap talk and commercials on the radio.

  • pst314

    Bookworm, how about podcasts? I particularly like Ricochet and Uncommon Knowledge for current affairs. And the Teaching Company has all sorts of lectures available for download.

  • http://ymarsakar.wordpress.com Ymarsakar