No baby but plenty of pop music

4 Apr

We’re expecting a new child any minute, I’m listening to Bach’s Partita no. 2 in D Minor, Josh Ritter’s The Animal Years, The Flaming Lips “Love Yer Brain” and Flo Rida’s “Wild Ones,” that sugary rap/techno/dance/pop piece of transcendentalism that manages to marry the outlaw literary tradition of the Beats—I swear I hear Kerouac and Ginsberg rattling around in here—with the Euro-trash excesses of the Dirty South. This club anthem amalgamates Disco dance culture, the Romantic poetic tradition, the jazz belters of the 1950s and a soupcon of the Miami cocaine sound. Rimbaud and his derangement of the senses. DeQuincy and his confessions of opium addiction. Coleridge and his opulent Kublai Khan. (Or maybe it doesn’t allude to any of these things, and I’m just rationalizing my declining tastes.)

There's just something intoxicating about this song. Simone agrees.

Strangely, I’ve also been thinking about westerns. A lot. Not watching any, just thinking about them.

I find these thought patterns weird. As if they were being transmitted.

The brain is a bizarre muscle. For the past two years, I’ve had repeated nightmares of Simone suffocating in one of my pillowcases. I would awake with my hands desperately shaking the pillows, a jolt of fear and then a mad dash through the dark to check on her. I would return to the bed in a near-fugue state, sliding back under the covers, my breathing returning to normal. Sometimes she was between the mattress and the box spring. Sometimes she was wedged between the oven and the kitchen wall. Sometimes she was in the clothes hamper. Once, like the James Cain short story, she was in the freezer.

The new nightmares deal with my teeth. They fall out, turn crimson or black, rot away from some hyper-advanced disease. Or they’re knocked out with a hammer. Distressing stuff, and I can’t tell what it means, if anything. The dreams are graphic, specific—a corrosive acid melts away my molars to the gums; a dentist tells me that my tooth decay is symptomatic of some new form of AIDS; I pull out my teeth at a public water park to the shock and dismay of the other water slide patrons. What could my subconscious possibly be trying to tell me?

Back to Simone. She’s a maniac, running and jumping and singing and always fighting off sleep. Yesterday she saw me with my hair cut and said, “You’re a crazy funny guy,” while laughing. Her books of choice are the If You Give a Moose a Muffin variety. She has an illuminating turtle on her bed that scatters the ceiling with stars. We can hear her clicking it on and off into the late evening. Last night she was fooling with it until 10. We’re working on a duet together. We have two potential songs: Singin’ in the Rain and We Are Young. She loves both, but sings off key and I can’t figure out how to make the recording sound even remotely good. The last sentence sounds like a joke but it isn’t.

I would update about grad school but my last classes seem so futile, banal, and frustrating that the thought of the remaining assignments fills my mouth with bile.

The waiting is tough on me, tougher on Simone, and of course the toughest on Beth. As soon as we have good news, I’ll update.

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