Last Week Delight

As promised I’m going to try to write a weekly post of the delights I’ve found over the past week or so. In his book Ross Gay talked about becoming a delight hoarder, and I sort of already feel like that. One it can sometimes feel like there are too many, and two I feel like I shouldn’t share them all because then what if I don’t have anything to write about in the future. I’m going to try not to hoard my delights because no matter the worry, there will always be more. I mean some of these are completely silly little things, but they gave me a little moment of joy, and I appreciated that the extra second I stopped to actually think to myself this is a delight gave them just a little bit more power for good in my life than they would have had if I had just thought about them in a more passing way. So I would say week one of this little experiment has been a success. Hopefully I will continue with the practice.

  • The Name of This Series. I appreciate a good pun. I don’t know that this is actually a good pun, but it pleases me. In case you haven’t figured it out, Last Week Delight is a riff on John Oliver’s HBO show, Last Week Tonight.
  • Long overdue library books being returned. News loves a good story about library books being returned decades after they were due. My library got back some books that have been gone so long technically they belonged to the women’s college that was merged with my current university when it went co-ed. I got to be interviewed about the story. It was kind of fun.
  • I missed my first Wordle last week. It was a very sad day, but also I appreciate that the word I missed was NASTY, and that’s what it felt like. Especially since I had the ASTY part of the word, but there are too many words that start that way. I guessed PASTY, TASTY, and HASTY, and then ran out of guesses. Nasty indeed.
  • Cheerleading others. I was just noticing on my social media last week how many musicians I follow are constantly cheering each other on and how many local restaurants I follow cheer on other local restaurants even people doing the same thing they do and could be considered their competition. For example a new patisserie opened in my neighborhood recently and another popular bakery has been promoting them. It’s nice to see people trying to lift each other up instead of tear each other down for a change.

And now we turn to a litany of music related things that brought me delight. If you didn’t figure out that music would feature heavily in this, you must be new here.

  • The artist GAYLE has a pop punk song that is very popular right now called abcdefu. Most songs that have multiple versions because of language are usually labeled something like explicit and clean or radio edit. It gave me great delight to see that hers are labeled abc (nicer) and abcdefu (angrier).
  • Someone posted a video from Rick Beato’s YouTube series on “What Makes This Song Great” featuring the song “Everybody Wants to Rule the World” by Tears for Fears. It’s one of my all time favorite songs, so I watched it, and then wound up going down a YouTube rabbit hole of a bunch of his past videos. He breaks down the songs isolating the individual tracks and instruments to talk about the interesting things each part is doing in the song. As someone who has zero musical talent, I’m always fascinated by this kind of stuff because it’s like magic to me that people think of any of this stuff.
  • Even though I don’t live in Philly, I am a big fan of the University of Pennsylvania radio station, WXPN, which I stream all the time particularly while I’m working. Helen Leicht was their long time mid-day host and a fixture in Philadelphia radio for 50 years. She’s been in and out the past few years with some medical issues, so it wasn’t a huge surprise when they announced that she wouldn’t be returning to the station. It is sad, but it’s been nice listening to all the tributes they’ve been doing and thinking about all the artists she’s introduced me to over the past 20 years that I’ve been listening. It kind of blew my mind when I stopped to think about how long I’d been listening to her on the radio as well.
  • I still listen to the radio on my commute. On most days it’s about 3 songs long. That is of course if it’s a good day, and I find songs I want to listen to, and I don’t spend most of my commute just flipping between stations trying to find actual music or a song I want to listen to. Some days I judge how good of a day I think it’s going to be based on the quality of my commute music. I hit the jackpot one day last week because not only did I get three good songs in a row, they were also great 80s/90s tracks that I could sing loudly off-key to while I was driving, and what’s better than that? In case you were wondering the songs were “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” by the Proclaimers, “Maneater” by Hall & Oates, and “Never” by Heart.

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