"With the headlights pointed at the dawn/ We were sure we'd never see an end to it all/ And I don't even care to shake these zipper blues/ And we don't know/ Just where our bones will rest/ To dust I guess"- "1979"
There's something special about music when you are a teenager. Sure, I still listen to music and love songs, but it was so much more important to me 15 years ago. It was my lifeline. The singers and songwriters spoke to me; they understood my pain, my hopes, my fears, my dreams better than I did. And they could put down into song emotions I could only whine about in a spiral-bound notebook that I hid under my mattress every night before bed. It's funny how hearing a song can take you back to a time and place.
I wasn't a Smashing Pumpkins fan at all; however, the summer after my best friend turned 16, the song "1979" was hugely popular. Seriously, has there EVER been a song more suited to cruising around small-town America with the windows down and a million stars twinkling above you? He had this old beat-up car, no tag, no license, and every night we just drove. Up and down streets. Through parking lots. The car was so crappy it didn't even have a working radio, so I would drag my boombox around with us and we would listen to the radio.
This was my first taste of real freedom. We never did anything bad. It was enough to just drive where you wanted to drive and listen to what you wanted to listen to and know you didn't have anything to do the next day except sleep late and listen to music. It was a magical time to be alive. Sometimes I feel sorry for today's youth. Maybe I'm just naive, but I feel like we had it so much easier. Yes, there were temptations- drugs, alcohol, sex, shoplifting- but I never felt like I was pressured to do any of those things (and I didn't). Sometimes I wish I could go back 15 years and just drive. Sometimes I just listen to the music.