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Thanks to all who have been commenting and participating! It’s been truly amazing – I’m not sure what kind of a response I was expecting for my first time out at a blog hop, but this has really been a killer weekend. And though I haven’t been replying to comments, I’ve been reading them all. Seriously, you guys are amazing – I love hearing what everyone gets up to on this holiday, and it’s really made me realize that the whole world isn’t conspiring against those of us who aren’t part of a couple. Everyone really’s just trying to appreciate the love in their life, no matter what form it takes.
Today’s the last chance to comment for my giveaway, so be sure to get in on it while you can! I will do my best to compile all the entries and draw either wed the 15 or thurs the 16 and announce the winner as soon as I can.
So today’s the big day, the day of hearts and flowers, the day of violins and accordions, the day of sparkly birdies and bright pink frogs!
A lot of people seem to think I’m this hard-hearted person since I’m a little independent and I have a smart mouth. Don’t ask me when those personality traits equal ice queen, but okay. Truth be told…and I’m only admitting this to support the blog hop…I am a softy. I may have distinct tastes in the romance department, but I do have them. So today we’ll be taking a look at things I find swoon-worthy.
Moulin Rouge – Truth! Peace! Beauty! Love! Everyone either loves or hates this movie. While I admit it has its weak points, I cannot help but melt every time I watch this thing. The dancing is fabulous, the design is insane, and the music!!!! Plus, at its core, you have the kind of complicated love story riddled with ridiculous humor that I love. Do Christian and Satine make dumb decisions? Of course. Is it way over the top? Hell yeah! Is the ending tragic? Oh, yes. Does that make the fact they profess their love for each other on top of an elephant with fireworks and rock ballads any less awesome? Nope, can’t say that it does.
Old Musicals – This would be the category that turns me into an instant sap. Meet Me in St.Louis, White Christmas, Singing in the Rain, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Kiss me Kate…I love them all. And while the plots can get a little silly and the endings can sometimes be tidied up within the space of a musical number, come on…I think all of us want life to be a little bit like this (Truly, life would be much easier to figure out if you had a soundtrack/score to guide you along). And admittedly I still have a mad crush on Howard Keel and I adore Gene Kelley and Danny Kaye. This sort of genre succeeds because to a certain extent it doesn’t bother with reality or all the ‘but…but..but..’s’ that we throw up to guard ourselves. These song and dance-filled extravaganzas plow right for your heart and drill right through the walls we tend to throw up. Because, come on…everyone knows the best things happen when you’re dancing 😉
Really Good Love Songs – Admittedly this is subjective, but we all have those songs that turn our cranks or make us blush and smile. Classic rock fan that I am, Bowie’s cover of Wild is the Wind never ceases to thrill me. That song is gorgeous and filled with the passion and devotion that a person longs to hear. In his original work Bowie has this ridiculous talent to put into words what a woman wants to hear – a dangerous and awesome talent indeed. As the World Falls Down, Be My Wife, Loving the Alien, Let Me Sleep Beside You…I could go on and on. I don’t know how many married friends I can name that have used at least one of those at their wedding. All focus on different aspects of relationships, and while he’s also done some ungodly hot relationship songs, these also play deliciously on the heartstrings, whereas something like Stay lasers its focus on the carnal.
On the gentler end of the spectrum, I absolutely love Robert Plant’s All the King’s Horses. For me, personally, this song might actually nudge ahead of some of Bowie’s (and if you know me you know how huge that is.) The intro reminds me of living near the Mississippi River when I was younger and the kinds of music I overheard my folks and other family members listening to. But the lyrics…forgive me for going all girly for a moment but oh my gawd…Robert Plant has this insane talent of being able to blend together tender and sultry aspects (both lyrically and in his delivery) plus also throw in these veiled mythological tidbits. When I listen to his albums like Mighty Rearranger I always think of him as some wandering storyteller or adventurer stopping at different villages and sharing his tales and stirring up hearts. While his songs like The Enchanter are more epic examples of this, the lyrics on All the Kings Horses are so gentle and tender, and who doesn’t want to hear about someone falling for ‘the beauty within’?
Admittedly, I also have music that I hide and never tell people I like until they stumble upon me listening to it and refuse to let me live it down. Some things like the soundtrack to Music and Lyrics are deemed acceptable. Others, like my fixation with Blessid Union of Souls, are not. Sigh. I know, I know, their songs are ungodly mushy and probably a little typical…but I LOVE THEM. I don’t care what that makes me, bring on the schmaltzy gooey love songs! And I Wanna Be There is my favorite. The first time I heard this, I was driving home from who knows where, and I think I actually pulled over at a light to write lyrics on my forearm arm so I could google it when I got home. I get that this is pretty much playing to what women want to hear. The cynical part of me reminds myself that no man completely thinks that way and this was probably written because it was obvious such a song would do well. Let’s face it…songwriters, like writers and musicians, like actors, have to be able to give the performance that people want to see. We may want to believe that this is how they really feel, but this isn’t always the fact.
This is where the emotional female part of me proudly shouts I do not care, I’m gonna like this song anyway and believe that some dude somewhere thinks this way, so nyah!
Ahem. I also love this song because while the emotional content is over the top, it expresses itself in everyday terms. That sort of thing is more accessible to me…as much as I joke about it, I’m not the type of woman to see myself as someone who would ever end up on the cover of an epic romance book. While I may joke about it, I’m not necessarily the tiara and gown type that would be completely comfortable with gigantic professions of love. Songs like G Tom Mac’s Shadowwalk (and even some of Bowie’s stuff) are gorgeous, but intimidating in that respect. But because I Wanna Be There takes the emotions and puts them in a very accessible way…well yeah, of course I’m going to like it.
The Hazards of Love (by The Decemberists) – And we all know I like epic stories, especially those with mythic or faerie tale elements. So how could I not adore something that combines that with a rock-ish concept album?! I mean, hello…The story of Margaret stumbling upon a shape changer and falling in love with him is gorgeous and ultimately tragic. They go up against human and magical obstacles, of course, and their love is ultimately what gets them into trouble but offers them at least some semblance of salvation. There are some amazing characters that show up throughout the album. But the more I listen to it, the more I love that the songs take a good deal of time to show the different aspects of love between the pair in question. There are some beautiful, earthy lyrics and beautiful musical phrasings going on that are repeated throughout. And, honestly, in a weird way I do find the whole concept romantic. Yes, it’s about a heroine stumbling upon an animal that just happens to be this magical dude and they fall in love and ultimately their love saves their souls even though there’s no hope of them living through to the end.This is romantic to me, don’t ask me why.
Never admit something like that to people who don’t know you well. To this day I still get heckled about this, something to the effect of: A deer man?! You think some girl falling for a deer man is romantic?! And the ending is awful, how can you say something is beautiful when everyone dies?!
Sigh. It’s so hard to explain this to people who didn’t grow up reading really old-school folk tales.
So enough about me…what sorts of stories, movies, and music do you tune into when you’re feeling mushy?
In a little while I’m going to have another post going up today – a continuation of a story I’ve been writing off-the-cuff for Tuesday Tales. And I can guarantee you that it definitely showcases my softer side, so if you’re looking for slightly sappy reading hopefully that’ll please you.
And remember, we’re at the last day of the giveaway so don’t forget to comment and check out the Blog Hop Spot! And don’t forget to check back later in the week to find out the winner of my giveaway!