Last spring, I went to a singles yoga class with my roommate. Singles yoga? Yes, singles yoga. It was my friend’s idea; she thought the male teacher was hot and convinced me to come along. But before we left the house, she said, “Wait, Smiley, you can’t wear shorts to a singles yoga class — there’s going to be cute single girls there. You have to wear something nice.” “Wear something nice?” I said. “This is my yoga outfit: t-shirt and basketball shorts. I don’t own those spandex half-pants" — (do guys really feel comfortable in downward dog with their junk just hanging there?) — "so what am I supposed to [...]
You probably have a lot of opinions about music, but Record Collecting for Girls author Courtney E. Smith has even more. In her music-nerd manual (which comes out today), Smith tackles such pressing musical issues as guilty pleasure songs, Top Five Lists, and what it means to like The Smiths too much. And since each essay in the book comes with a playlist, the only way to do this interview properly was to head over to Turntable.fm to spin some tunes and chat about music.
@courtneyesmith started playing "Lowdown" by Boz Scaggs
woolyknickers: Wow. This is not where I thought we would start this interview. @courtneyesmith: Yes, really. [...]
If you get existentially freaked out by books like 1001 Books You Must Read Before You Die, take a Drumstick break. They have a variety pack now! For the rest of you: The Guardian made a new toy that creates a playlist of the six-songs that sum up your life. You start with the "first song you ever bought" (almost no longer a thing! Hurry!) and end not with your funeral song — though you have to choose that too — but an encore. (As if.) Which are your six songs? No pressure.
When I was twelve years old I had never kissed a boy. In fact, the closest I'd come to romance was a short-lived instant messenger flirtation with a classmate named Phil for whom I 'had a total boner'. If the transcripts of those conversations still existed, I'd be able to prove that I tried to impress him by telling him that I rollerbladed. Passionately. And not just regular rollerblading, either. I told him that I offroad rollerbladed (a lie), and that it was an emerging extreme sport (also a lie), and that I was one of the best in this underground ring of athletes.
Needless to say, my real [...]
I was going to make a whole list, but then I looked at my iTunes and realized I pretty much have the same three on repeat, haha. But they carry me through the whole emotional spectrum, I guess — excited to nervous to sad, and back again.
And regarding the final song on my list: who will you ask to dance during the world's final "slow song"? And what do you think will even signal that the final slow song has begun to play? Earthquakes, avalanches? Anything? Nothing? Assuming there's something, though, when faced with the world's final slow song, will you have the presence of mind to pick [...]
Playing music when you hook up with someone is a great, time-honored tradition — it adds background noise, sets a mood, and shows off the cool new CDs/MP3s/records/ cassettes/ringtones/whatever you obtained for just that occasion. But then sometimes things go wrong, hilariously, and a horrible, mood-killing song slithers out of your stereo, because either your playlist wasn’t long enough, or you forgot there was an unfortunately named track on the album you selected, or you just put it on shuffle and also happen to be the kind of person who owns soundtracks to musicals. You know? No? You have perfect music? Welllll, I definitely don’t, and I asked a [...]