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How have you been? I have actually missed you a lot. The other day, I took a road trip with my parents and I thought of you. I remembered how you told me you wanted me to burn a CD with music for you. Thus, I listened to my iPod the whole way and selected many cool songs that I think you would like. Please get back to me and tell me which ones you liked and all. Also, I know you told me to only put around 10 songs but I could not contain myself and I chose 16 of them. I hope you will like them, because to tell you the truth all of these songs kill me.
The first song I chose to put in the CD is “3 Cigarettes” by The Sleeping. Besides the beat and instruments that are cool as hell, the lyrics really remind me of you. First of all, there are the obvious connections to cigarettes, which seem to be one of your passions. Also when he says “I have been drinking more and eating less” reminds me of you. It is pretty much all that you have done lately, smoked, drank, and thought of Jane. Just remember that just like they say “we don’t have to blame ourselves” you should not blame yourself for everything that has been happening. Finally, the line “Do you care? Are you there? Are you listening?” kills me and I am sure it will kill you too. It is calling for people’s attentions, it is calling all those phonies and it makes me wonder if anyone really cares about me. I am sure it will make you feel the same way too.
The next song I chose was “Through the Glass” by Stone Sour. I think that this song is talking about an insider who became a stranger and now they are looking from the outside back in. This makes me think of you because many times throughout your life you have alienated yourself. You just look from the outside as time passes by and sometimes you feel like going back in, and being an insider again but you don’t. The phrase “I’m looking at you through the glass; don’t know how much time is passed. Oh God it feels like forever” makes me think of you a lot. Because you are always thinking about how quickly time passes by. It seems like you have been alienating yourself for a long time now, it feels like forever.
The next song on your CD is “Tears in Heaven” by Eric Clapton. I just had to add this one. I know that you are really sensitive about your brother’s death and all, and you don’t like talking about it. However, I think that the sooner you face reality the better it will be for you and everyone. This song was made for his son who died. He was very meaningful to Eric Clapton just like your brother Allie was to you. I know you so well, that I am sure that you have wondered about many of the things that this song is stressing about. Such as if Allie would remember your name, and if it would all be the same. Also, there is a bigger picture to it.
I remember about an specific conversation with your sister Phoebe you told me about. She asked you to name one thing you really liked and you said you really liked Allie. I think you should listen to lines such as “Cause I know I don’t belong here in heaven” and “Cause I know I just can’t stay here in heaven”. The bigger picture that these lines are showing and I am trying to prove to you is that as much as you love Allie you have to let him go. You are both in different worlds now, and wherever he is, you don’t belong there. At least not yet. Holden, you should really get on with your life and just keep with you all of the good memories you have with Allie but let him go. It is the best thing to do.
I am sure you will enjoy quite a lot the next song I picked out for you. It is a classic by the great band Pink Floyd. This one is called “Another Brick in the Wall”. You might have heard of it already. The meaning of the song is to say that in school they treat us all the same and they do not respect that everyone is a separate and different individual. Pink Floyd is saying that this is all “false control” and they are putting all the students together and trying to make them all the same, therefore losing their individualities.
I can tell that you will agree with these lines, and that they will really kill you. When they say “All in all it’s just another brick in the wall”, the meaning is that every single one of us students are just a tiny brick of the wall of hypocrisy, superficiality, and shallowness that they are trying to build. “They” are the ones that you every so often refer to as the “phonies”. That is what I think this song is criticizing, phonies who try to make everyone be the same. They try to make everyone be like them. Hopefully there are still people out there, like me and you, who are going to fight this and knock down this “wall of phonies”.
The next song I picked is called “Boys Don’t Cry” by The Cure. It makes me think of you and Jane. When I listen to it, I think of how you like Jane so much and she is the only girl that you truly care about but you won’t tell her. Just like the song is describing, you often say “I would…” You mention things that you would do, such as give her a buzz, and visit her, and ask her on a date. However, you never do any of it. The line “boys don’t cry” is obviously making a critic to some boys like you, who would rather hide their feelings and appearing tough instead of telling the truth and possibly crying. I love the line “I try and laugh about it hiding the tears in my eyes” and the one “I try to laugh about it; cover it all up with lies”. Both of these lines are very strong. They also show things that you do. You often act all nonchalant and like giving Jane a buzz is just something you would do any day. However, I think it is much deeper than that. You are scared of being rejected by her because she is the only one you care about. So, you just act casual and cool about it and lie and hide your feels for her.
The next song, “The Permanent Rain” by The Dangerous Summer follows the same line as the one before. I think that just like the singer is saying, “I won’t let this die”, you shouldn’t let what you have with Jane die. You and her both have a really strong connection and bond. I think it would be very sad if you did not do anything about it. I think you should go and tell her how you feel. It is really the best thing to do. When he says, “I know it’s not helping to hear me say: I wish it was me in the car the other day” really makes me think of you as well. Even though you have never actually told her about it, you have wondered for a long time about her and Stradlater in his teacher’s car. You wonder about what happened and you cannot help but wish that it were you with her in the car instead of Stradlater. Finally, when the line “You know it meant a lot, but I was just a kid” comes up it seems like it was written for you. You were both too young to fully understand the connection that you both had. Now, I think you are old and mature enough to understand it and your relationship with Jane should mean even more if you tell her how you feel.
The next song, however, is not about Jane. It is about High School, hence the name “High School Low” by Say Anything. Just like you, the guy in the song is sixteen. He is also worrying about things such as the whole high school experience, and girls. I find there is even a connection to you when he says, “My teacher says that I’m brilliant”. It reminds me of how Mr. Spencer would try and get the best out of you. He did not say you were brilliant, however, he acknowledge that you had so much more potential than the one you were showing with your poor grades and test scores. The passage about looking at pictures of himself when he was a child can also be compared to you. I know that you have often thought about how it is such a horrible experience having to grow up and all, but we will get to this topic later. To do with the whole grades issue, he also says “My grades look pretty damn low. I want to motivate myself, but how the hell am I supposed to work”.
This is something that is so similar to you that it could have come out of your mouth. At the same time that you realize that your grades are low and you need to make an effort, you don’t know how to. You are confused about what you should do that would motivate yourself. I remember you told me that when your psychoanalyst asked you if you would apply yourself when you got back to school in September you said you did not know. I mean of course you want to, but as you said it yourself, you are not able to tell how you are going to behave. One phrase that is constantly repeated is “take me away”. Just like you, this boy wants to run away from these high school days and from all the “phoniness” and move on to a better part of life; be it the past or the future.
Speaking of phonies, this is what my next chosen song is about. It is called “Mutiny!” by Set Your Goals. This song is clearly criticizing people. In my opinion, it is criticizing the phonies. What leads me to think this way is when things such as “superior, you are inferior” and “heroes have betrayed” are said. This is talking about people who think that they are better than other s when they really are nothing special. It is also talking about how people can just betray you and change all of the sudden. Finally, the line “I will find the line and cross it every time” reminds me of you. It reminds me of how you many times alienate yourself as a form of protection. Therefore, I think that crossing the line is a symbol for you of that crazy red hunting hat you wear. You wear it to prove your point and to show people that you don’t care and you’re fine with being different. This is nothing else but a way of “crossing the line”.
The next song I chose is called “Flake” and it is by Jack Johnson. In case you don’t know, a flake is someone who says that they will go somewhere or do something and then they don’t. Am I the only one who sees a resemblance here to you?! Yes, I am going to start talking about Jane again. You seriously have to stop saying that you will call her, unless you are actually planning on doing it. Otherwise, you are just flaking. The strong line “It seems to me that maybe pretty much always means no” is what I feel sometimes when you start talking to me about her. You say that you might call her if you feel like it. Now, I am starting to see it as something you just have to say to feel good about yourself, to show that you have the power to call her. I think you should not “flake” Jane. Besides that, it is a great song and I really love the instrumental and the beat for it. I am sure you will love it too!
The next song I picked is a slow one. I find it truly beautiful. It is called “Cannonball” by Damien Rice. It is also a love song. What I think it is talking about is about someone whom he really loves but that he cannot be with for a reason or another. He talks about how he remembers the girl all the time, and the things that remind him of her. I think that the way he feels about this girl is just like how you feel about Jane. It reminds me of how you remember her because of little things such as how she always kept her kings on the back.
This song also brings up the issue you have of lying and it claims that the issues he had to face in life when dealing with love are the ones that made him be like that. It also reminds me of you when he mentions that “It is not hard to fall when you float like a cannonball” because you can often be very “heavy” and therefore you sink into your issues like a cannonball sinking down in an ocean. My favorite like on this song, however, has to be the last one. It says “when you know that you just don’t know”. I think it is talking about when people are confused and how it takes courage, to even admit that you are lost.
“Speed of Sound” by Coldplay is also sort of a slow song. The main point to this song is that it is talking about time. I think that Coldplay is trying to show how everything moves so fast, like the speed of sound. Time goes by too quickly, Holden. I know you have already realized that before, considering how you have told me countless times and made me notice that once we notice everything has already happened. This song could have been sung by someone who is waiting on a platform and they are noticing how fast things happen. It also talks about the issues we all have with dealing with this fast-moving time.
Be prepared because this next song I am about to introduce to you will kill you. I am serious. It is called “Forever Young” and it is by Alphaville. It is impossible for me to listen to it and not think of you. The main point to this song is the fact that we all get old. The singer obviously wants to be “forever young” just like you! You tend to resist the natural process of maturity and growing up. It seems like you want to be forever young without having any responsibilities or having to deal with any problems of adulthood. I think this is mostly because you are scared. You are scared of what awaits for you, and it all sort of mystify you. That is why you invent that you do not want to be an adult because it is a world of phoniness. It is your way of running away from the fact that you are actually scared of growing up because you do not have a clue of what any of it is like.
A line on this song that I find really interesting is “Some are like water, some are like the heat, some are a melody and some are the beat”. I think that this line is talking about the people that make our life what it is. The people that are there for us. I think that water is a symbol for the people that are a bit colder and the heat for the ones who are warm. The people who are a melody are the ones, like Jane, who come every once in a while and they completely change how you were before, just like the melody of a song. The “melodies” of someone’s life are not always there, but we can never be the same after they leave. Finally, the beat is a symbol for the people who are there to support you in your life constantly, just like the beat in a song. It is also impossible to be the same without the “beats” of our life, such as Phoebe, because they are the ones that we can call whenever we need.
I think you will really enjoy the next song I picked. It is called “Marching Bands of Manhattan” by Death Cab for Cutie. First of all, the main reason of why it reminds me of you is the whole New York experience. I know how much that city describes you. I am sorry but I will have to bring old Jane up once again. I think that this song is mostly talking about how he wants to be with someone that doesn’t know how they feel. I think that this is your type of song, and I hope you will like it. If you like it, you should look up more songs by Death Cab for Cutie, they all send like this and have wonderful lyrics.
Well, this is pretty much all, I hope you enjoyed the songs I chose and you will take some of the advice I gave you. Remember to get back to me and tell me what you thought of them. Oh! Also, I hope you like the cover for the CD! I know how crazy you have been about those ducks on Central Park and I just thought you would enjoy that.
P.S. The two other songs I added were songs I found searching on the internet that were inspired by The Catcher in the Rye and I thought that they would be interesting to add.