Thursday, March 01, 2007

One foot on the ground

Here's the first verse and chorus of 'Fidelity', a song from last year by the very hawt and very gifted Regina Spektor:

I never loved nobody fully
Always one foot on the ground
And by protecting my heart truly
I got lost in the sounds
I hear in my mind
All these voices
I hear in my mind all these words
I hear in my mind all this music

And it breaks my heart
And it breaks my heart
And it breaks my heart
It breaks my heart

Heard this on the radio today, driving down out of the Adelaide Hills in a hot late afternoon, and I wondered (as you do), could I say that? I mean, Spektor is all of 27 and she would think such caution a bad thing, and she still has lots of time. But did I ever take both feet off the ground?

Once. Just once.

And it broke my heart, and it broke my heart ... actually, it permanently derailed my life and nearly killed me. So listen to Auntie carefully, Grasshoppers: keep one foot on the ground. You heard it here.


comicstriphero said...

I heart Regina.

tigtog said...

Auntie tigtog seconds Auntie Pav: one foot on the ground, younglings, one foot on the ground.

A torn and bleeding heart takes heroic effort to recover from: better to just let it get bruised a bit now and then.

Word verification: auntktjm, which seems especially appropriate

Meredith said...

Intriguing... 'd love to hear more about your derailment... have you written about it? Or do you plan to?

Mark said...

Ever since you recommended the Audreys last year, I've worked out that we have identical tastes in music! I thought my friend E and I were the only Oz fans of Regina!

Pavlov's Cat said...

Yes, Regina is quite something. She reminds me of a sort of next-generation New York Russian Jane Siberry. (Have a listen to 'La Jalouse' or 'Everything Reminds Me of my Dog' on Bound By the Beauty -- same breathy murmurs and girly sounds and fragmented-conversation lyrics.)

Tigtog, that word verification is hysterical. What would the odds have been, I wonder?

Meredith -- names have been withheld to protect the not-so-innocent. But it was a long time ago; I too was 27, like Joni Mitchell when she was making Blue about James Taylor, and Anne Elliot in Persuasion. Perhaps there's some weird '27' switch that gets flicked.

Someone ten years older when you're that age is really fatal -- a serious grown-up, but still young enough to be physically devastating.

cristy said...

Too late. Both feet have already been removed and so now I must simply live in permanent fear.

There are worse things.

Lunar Brogue said...

There's no denying the power of the illusion though (or romantic fantasy). Of launching oneself into Keats's 'perilous seas in faery lands forlorn'.

I have often wondered whether what we admire in people who've abandoned themselves to passion or love is their courage to remove both feet from the ground, accept their vulnerability, and live this illusion.

Paradox noted.

Enemy Combatant said...

Birds sing out of tune
And rainclouds hide the moon
As I hide
Deep inside, with my lonliness
I don't care what they say
I can't live in a world without love.

Peter and Gordon circa late 60's.

Made some dumb mistakes and somehow stumbled through, but having completed perhaps two thirds of the journey, like the characters from Pynchon's new romp, I've always been prepared to pop both tootsies aboard life's beautiful balloon and take the ride.

Some may call me a fool for believing that gold, in hearts, is where you find it, but if a copper called Kojak ever barks; "Who loves ya , baby?", I consider myself incredibly fortunate that my reply would be instantaneous, a heartbeat reflex.

The character played by Anthony LaPaglia in "Lantana" made a big mistake with his surliness(self-centredness)when Kerry Armstrong’s character(spouse) tried to rekindle the spark at the local Arthur Murray chapter.
Next week, me and my gal are off for the first of possibly weekly salsa lessons . Her idea, but I'm really looking forward to it.
She just loves to dance. And I love her. Sixteen years true. Our ongoing work of art.

Mum and Dad are celebrating their 60th wedding anniversary next month. My siblings suggested that I m.c. the event. Been wondering what to say that wasn’t corny or platitudinous. Your post gave me the answer, P.C. My folks met at Wagga Wagga Air Force base during WW2. Dad joined Qantas after the war, retiring as a Check Captain in the seventies. Flying was always the other passion in his life.

About 20 years ago I saw a newsclip on telly that has never left me. A large commercial airliner had accidentally and tragically flown into a mountain enshrouded in a “pea souper” on its approach to land. There were no survivors. The cabin crew were in radio contact with the tower. Authorities released the audio. Seconds before impact, the plane emerged from the thick haze and the pilot, aware of his imminent death uttered: “I love you, Marge”.
The fundamental things sure do apply, as time goes by. Thanks for the inspiration, Pav.

Pavlov's Cat said...

We aim to please.

But let's not get too carried away, EC -- I said keep one foot on the ground, not keep both feet on the ground. Nuance, man, nuance.

Your story about the pilot and his Marge and the important things in life reminds me of a bit in Miss Manners' Guide to Excruciatingly Correct Behaviour that I've always taken heed of: 'People claim they don't know what to say to a bereaved person. Miss Manners recommends "I'm sorry".'

I hope the 60th anniversary party is a wild success. Re your speech, I'm sure you could find some lovely quotation or poem about diamonds that wasn't naff either.

Enemy Combatant said...

“'People claim they don't know what to say to a bereaved person. Miss Manners recommends "I'm sorry".'”
True enough,PC,I empathize with your pain, but a quarter of a century is a long time. My drift is that when one shoots the works, by gambling on life and love again, yes, by getting both feet off the ground, then the rewards can be quite grand. Croppers happen, but so do never ending stories.

"Re your speech, I'm sure you could find some lovely quotation or poem about diamonds that wasn't naff either."

Right you are then, will lend an ear to the script in DiCaprio's new movie about a Zibabwean merc in Sierra Leone, for further oratorial inspiration tomorrow. Teenette Combatant needs me to get in; MA15+ or something. Critics claim his accent is quite "pawsible".

Pavlov's Cat said...

No no, nothing so terrible has happened to me as I seem to have inadvertently suggested, nothing worse than a negatively formative experience at a watershed sort of age. The example from Miss Manners wasn't anything to do with that -- I was just giving another instance of your point about how preferable it is in any circumstances to say the simple, heartfelt thing.

Of course the rewards can be grand (though dare I suggest that, from my observation over the years, they are more often grand for blokes than for women?) -- I would never dispute that.

I though of a very pithy diamond quotation I've alwyas liked, and that might serve very well to comment on sixty years of marriage and the endurance of the bad with the good: 'No pressure, no diamonds.' Unfortunately I can't remember who said it.

Enemy Combatant said...

"Of course the rewards can be grand (though dare I suggest that, from my observation over the years, they are more often grand for blokes than for women?) -- I would never dispute that."

Claw marks aside, PC, your obsevation may well be true, but I think it's more about attitude than gender. Our perspectives on this age old drama are different. Just like some kind of crazy cockamamie kid, I've always tried to look on the bright side, I guess. Now I'm taking gratuitous gender-hits, for the sins of never met bretheren.

Great idea about the no pressure - no diamonds, human tectonic plates grinding relentlessly together over time to produce the goods.

Anonymous said...

Pav, I couldn't agree more. (About the original post, that is).

My formative experience was at 47, and I got a dose of post-traumatic stress out of that for a while (does wonders for the waistline, but not really recommended). Since then, I believe in keeping a plan B on the back burner at all times... knowing you have it there is comforting.

Blogger on the Powder-coated alloy banister

Bernice said...

Ah - just had a wee incidence of feet lifting myself. Totally unexpected, highly unedifying, horribly time-wasting.& unreciprocated. Thankfully. & though the feet may have been waving in the air, a persistent stream of Third Thoughts successfully avoided the inevitable train wreck. So perhaps that left foot was maintaining ground contact after all. Listen to Aunty PC & Aunty Tigtog - the dance is a balance on the feet, not in the air.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure if I've ever been propelled skyward by love: I thought I was, once or twice, but it all ended badly. I was very young, so were they, and mostly I don't think they were worth the energy.

So I got over it and now things are nice and settled and there's a little family that I'm a part of, warm and supportive, with nice dinners and walks in the park and snoozing on the couch etc.

But maybe sometimes in the middle of the night I wonder if I'm missing out, if there isn't some grand passion out there rather than this warm companionship thing.

On the other hand, perhaps the whole reason failed and difficult love affairs have such resonance is because you never got to settle into routines, you never got to wash his stinky socks and gripe about the way he throws his towel on the floor and discover that he really does talk too much when he's had a few beers, only now, the better part of a decade later, you've heard all the stories before.

Did I have a point? Not sure.

But I do like Regina Spektor.

Pavlov's Cat said...

There's a lot more of that about than you might think, anon, and here are the Christine Lavin lyrics to prove it.

R H said...



I need to know more.

dany le roux said...

Was James Taylor the "holy man on the FM radio"?
What is a "doorbitch"?
Everyone seems to be avoiding the phrase "to be swept off your feet" and to be actively avoiding ever allowing one's self to be swept off one's feet.This is a shame because relationships of any sort between any two people fail if there is more than about 5 points of IQ difference between them.More than about 5 points of IQ difference means communication does not happen. Simple as that.
Next time get a professional to estimate the number.

Pavlov's Cat said...

The holy man on the FM radio was before James Taylor -- probably Leonard Cohen.

The doorbitch is the word verification feature on Blogger that makes you type out the non-typeface letters to prove you aren't a robot. Sometimes it lets you in and sometimes it doesn't, just like a real doorbitch.

It's making me a bit jumpy that all the women who've commented here have understood my post perfectly, but that all the men seem to think it means I'm some kind of ultra-cautious non-responsive anti-bloke/anti-lerve sort of a person. If you read the post properly you will see that the opposite is the problem. Yes, I, like several of the women who have commented here, was indeed swept off my feet. The person who had swept me off my feet swung me round romantically a few times and then dropped me on my head on the concrete and fractured my, as it were, skull. It hurt.