Breaking Up With a Song

What is it about teenagers and break up tapes? All through high school, I remember watching my friends go through the usual angst of mating and dating and dumping and pregnancy scares and all that fun stuff. I didn’t actually get a chance to partake of such things until later in high school (senior year in fact). Ah, such the wallflower, I.

But in any case, one of the consistent things about it was the breakup tape. Gender didn’t seem to play much of a role here – both guys and girls that I knew would make them (although I think boys made more of them than girls. Maybe that’s because they’re not as good with their feelings?)

Still, I have to wonder at it. Do you put hateful songs? Fun songs? Songs that make you remember your last dance together?

I myself, have only been guilty of such an offense twice. Once after the guy I was dating (for several years through college and in theory was going to marry), dumped me for the second time and immediately knocked up some other girl he’d been living with. He married her, of course and they have a small hockey team of children from what I understand. Bitter? At the time – you betcha! I think I cried for two days straight…which is pretty horrible. And yeah, I made a tape. Even gave it to him. It even had some cheeseball poem or something on the inside and a tiny key. Because, of course, he had made a big deal of the fact that I “held the key to his heart” or some such crap. So yeah, I gave it back.

And the songs? Strangely enough, I don’t think there were any songs there that we both enjoyed, except “our” song. He was a country-western music lover and I couldn’t stand it. So I just threw songs on it that I liked and were nicely passive aggressive. “Look! Here’s a song with my *name* in it! Doesn’t that make you want to come back to me?” Well, ok. I *did* put Jodee Mecina’s “Bye Bye” on there – it was the only country song I could tolerate and it was fitting.

Excuse me while I go vomit.

Of course the tape didn’t work, but it made me feel better to make it. Maybe there is something to it – a gathering of music to try to describe everything you’re feeling, or that you love or hate or whatever.

It certainly beat my second breakup tape – which wasn’t a tape at all. Just a scribbling of NIN’s Down in It on the back of a typewritten letter. Note: Breakup letters are also pretty pathetic.

And of course, then you have to wonder – just what does the recipient do with said item? Throw it away? Burn it? Find it 20 years later and drunkenly call you and tell you he wished he’d slept with you after all?

I don’t know. It disturbs me somewhat to think there’s a bit of me possibly hanging out there for someone to find, but perhaps I’m assuming too much.

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