So, Dr. Curmudgeon (or, as I like to think of him, the other Dr. C.) writes:
I'm going to deviate from the academic questions 'cause I'm trying to overwhelm myself with those thoughts just now. So, something a bit more basic: if you were making the soundtrack to your life, what would the major acts be and what one song would represent them?
Now, I think what he wants is one song per act, for why divide the life into acts if one were only going to pick one song, right? So, Crazy's life thus far, in five acts:
Act One: A Precocious and Curious Crazy Makes Her Appearance on the Scene
This first act ranges from birth to age 11 or 12, thus covering the childhood of Crazy. Now, Crazy was an only child (or, as she mistakenly told people when she was small, a lonely child) and so she really was quite the center of attention. Doted on by her two 20-something parents and a bevy of aunts who were teenagers, the young Crazy enjoyed such activities as dressing her younger male cousins up like girls, playing in the dirt, ice skating, reading (natch), and playing pretend. I feel that it would be fun to choose a song that I really loved from that time, such as "Catalina Matalina," but then I think I really should choose something that says a bit more and that I also associate with that time. And so.
The track: "Different Drum" by Linda Ronstadt.
Act Two: Times of Change, Times of Trouble: The Divorce Years
Well, the title of this one pretty much says it all. After 11 years, Crazy's dad moves out, and Crazy becomes a child of a "broken home" (as Sister Virginia, the principal of my school, so tactfully put it to my mother in front of me). This, as you might imagine, was quite a turbulent time, which included some experiments with shoplifting as well as some acting out in school. I first kissed a boy, we moved to another part of town, I kissed a couple more boys, and then I settled down some. What song captures this time? Well, tragically, the song I most associate with it is Bob Seger's "Turn the Page," which my father played fucking constantly. However, if we're talking about what song I'd choose, and again going with the idea that it's a song that should be both descriptive and give a sense of me at the time, then I'd have to choose....
The track: "Here I Go Again" by Whitesnake. What? You know you rocked out to that song!
Act Three: Heathers, or a Girl Comes of Age in the Early '90s
It's true, during this time two of my best friends were named "Heather." And there were many other Heathers on the edge of our circle. I was editor of my high school newspaper, in choir, acted in some school plays, was in the Latin club, and worked at the frozen yogurt place at the mall. In other words, I was busy busy. This, however, was also the first time at which people started to associate the moniker "Crazy" (indeed, at my 10-year reunion the first thing My Crush said was, "Oh my god! It's the Heathers and that Crazy Firstname Lastname! You guys are exactly the same!" (He, tragically, was not exactly the same, or at least not the same as I imagined him to be, but I suppose that's for the best.) This was also the period of my first Real Live Boyfriend First Love (and the sort of turbulent relationship that only happens when one is transitioning from high school to college), my mom read my diary and found out I lost my virginity, FL and I broke up and only later did I find out he'd been cheating on me throughout - good times.
The track: "I Just Can't Get Enough" by Depeche Mode
Act Four: You Keep Talking about "Truth" - You Don't Actually Believe in "Truth," Do You? The Grad School Years
I've got to say, I do believe that thus far, these years constitute The Golden Age of Crazy (and indeed, a fair number of people actually called me Crazy, like as a name, which is where I got the idea for my pseudonym, in fact). Sure, Grad School was torture in a great many ways, but it was also the time when I really came into myself intellectually, I was living in a great city, I was going out all the time, I had a gaggle of boyfriends, I had a crew of peeps to carouse with, I went to New York for the first time, I fell in love for real for the second time (and out of it for the second time).... And sure, I learned that it was idiotic to believe in anything, such as "truth" or "love" or stable and fixed identity, which has caused some static in the years that have followed, but god, that was a great fucking time. Now, there is a large part of me that wants to choose the song "Livin' La Vida Loca" for this Act, but even I have my limits. No, there is one and only one song that I can choose, and only Medusa will know the precise reason why.
The track: "Ray of Light" by Madonna
Act Five: Dr. Crazy's Adventures on the Tenure-Track
Well, what really can I say about Act Five? This would be my life now, naturally, and so you all know an awful lot about it already. I suppose I feel like I'm in a much more centered place than I inhabited in Act Four - a period of hard work, certainly, and also a period that feels a lot like a phase of transition before I'm on to the next thing, only I'm not sure what that "next thing" will be. I suppose that you'll find out right along with me.
The track: "Extraordinary Machine" by Fiona Apple.
And so, that is the Life of Crazy in Five Acts and Five Songs. I certainly hope that this has proved illuminating (or at the very least entertaining) for you all, and that I have adequately satisfied that other Dr. C's curiosity.