Leonard Cohen’s Final Prophecy

I listened to Leonard Cohen’s new album the weekend before the election. Cohen’s voice was rougher than when he sang Suzanne, but the lyrics on the album were still at Hallelujah levels.

It was before I knew what was coming, but the beginning of the title track on You Want it Darker stuck with me:

If you are the dealer, I’m out of the game.
If you are the healer, it means I’m broken and lame.
If thine is the glory then mine must be the shame.
You want it darker,
We kill the flame.

Cohen released the album on October 21st. He died the day before “the dealer” was elected president.

The Talking Heads Destory 24-Hour News Talking Heads

Here is a fun game that will make you resilient to the influence of political talking heads.

Pick a 24-hour news channel: CNN, MSNBC, FOX. There are streams for them online as well.

(Side Note: I’m sad you can’t turn on Trump TV because that guy got another job in houses, I think… real estate?)

Anyway, turn to one of those channels and wait until a talking head comes on the TV. How can you tell if there’s a talking head on TV? Well, if there is a panel of TV people on TV, they are all talking heads. Also, if a person appears to be giving strictly opinion, he is a talking head. Women are very rarely solo talking heads. I’m sure it’s sexism, but I haven’t narrowed down the specific type of sexism.

Do you have a talking head on the TV?

MUTE THE SOUND!

Now, turn on some of the greatest hits from the band, the Talking Heads. Play the following songs instead of listening to the opinions that don’t really matter.

I made this playlist that’s at the bottom of this page.

Here’s the political wisdom the Talking Heads (the band) have to offer.

Once in Lifetime:

“And you may ask yourself,
How do I work this?
And you may ask yourself,
Where is that large automobile?
And you may tell yourself,
This is not my beautiful house!
And you may tell yourself,
This is not my beautiful wife!”

This Must Be the Place (Naïve Melody):

“I can’t tell one from the other
I find you, or you find me?
There was a time before we were born
If someone asks, this is where I’ll be, where I’ll be.”

Psycho Killer:

“I can’t seem to face up to the facts.
I’m tense and nervous and I can’t relax.
I can’t sleep ’cause my bed’s on fire.
Don’t touch me I’m a real live wire.”

“You start a conversation you can’t even finish it.
You’re talkin’ a lot, but you’re not sayin’ anything.
When I have nothing to say, my lips are sealed.
Say something once, why say it again?”

Burning Down the House: 

“Hold tight, wait till the party’s over.
Hold tight, we’re in for nasty weather.
There has got to be a way;
Burning down the house”

Take Me To the River: 

“Take me to the river, drop me in the water.
Push me in the river, dip me in the water,
Washing me down, washing me”

Road to Nowhere:

“We’re on a road to nowhere,
Come on inside.
Taking that ride to nowhere,
We’ll take that ride.
I’m feeling okay this morning,
And you know.
We’re on the road to paradise,
Here we go, here we go”

This wisdom from the Talking Heads will break any influence that the TV’s talking heads have over you forever. Happy Listening!

 

26 Steps Away, At Age 26

Each year, I come up with a way to document my current age. So here’s one thing about 26. A Rubik’s Cube’s solution is never more than 26 moves away. It’s a good reminder that tough challenges can be solved in 26 moves.

As I write this, I’m sitting in Denver’s Union Station. When I rode the bus from Boulder to Denver for my birthday seven years ago, this was a broken down building that you passed through quickly. Now, Union Station is a destination to reconnect with old friends and scheme up future plans. I feel that way about 26. It’s not a year I just plan on passing through.

In the last few weeks, I’ve had some anxiety about turning 26. I feel like I am no closer to solving the lurking uncertainties in my life than I was last year. I worried that my birthday was just a height chart mark on the wall where I’m not getting any taller. It’s not the age that’s bothering me, but the idea that I’m standing still.

In the last few days, I have felt a lot of love and encouragement from the people in my life. I’m trying to take steps to start moving forward. I’m not sure how much I can accomplish in one year, but I know things can be a lot different in ten years.

My 26th birthday is the tenth anniversary of when I got my drivers license. I can tell you that driving has gotten better with age. When I was 16, my car had manual locks, crank windows and a tape player. Now that I’m 26, I have a hard time remembering where I parked my car. I spend a lot of time arguing with my Bluetooth about which contact I’m trying to call. It’s a lot less work and a better ride.

I feel things improving with age. I’m a little calmer than I was a couple of years ago. I’ve explored a few more back alley ideas and rode out on a few more quests. I’m starting over with my current predicament. The solution is 26 steps away (or fewer).