It may be slightly immature, but for every guy I've ever been hung up on, there is a cheesy melodramatic song, if not a cheesy melodramatic playlist. I'm a music-loving kind of girl. It relaxes me and helps me focus and energizes me and dredges up old heartache and warms my soul with fond memories. Some of the music I listen to is very good and some is not, but all of it speaks to me. (Whether it says anything important is neither here nor there.) I put my music player on random and let it cycle through my library tonight. The first few songs were bland and spoke to me as great background music. Then a song that I haven't listened to in years, "Be My Downfall" by Del Amitri, came on. There are songs that can stop you dead in your tracks, not necessarily for their musical genius (because, I mean, I love me some Del Amitri and all, but we're not talking about the Beatles or anything), but for their ability to take you back to a time in your life. "Be My Downfall" is one of those songs. A long time ago, we were friends. He was older and had a very serious girlfriend and I always felt like a little kid from hickville around him. In my head, I knew things were never going to go anywhere. Sure, I had my pop psychology about why we spent the majority of the workday IMing and why he'd almost slept with me. "He's unhappy with his girlfriend," I told myself. "He's going to see that he's using me as an escape."
"But you will be my downfall tonight / Be my downfall be my great regret be the one girl / That I'll never forget / Be my undoing / be my slow road to ruin tonight"And so "Be My Downfall" became his song. I don't quite remember why I own Del Amitri's Greatest Hits (oh yes, they have greatest hits!), but I do and I was listening to it one day when the song came on and I just wanted him to feel that way about me. It was so silly. The song is so cheesy and not deep or nuanced or musically interesting. But for some dumb reason, the damn thing spoke to me. And I put it on every mix cd from that year of college and I can't bear to delete it from my computer. My subconscious won't let me delete it, because I'd rather revel in the silly sadness and laugh at myself than give it up totally. (I have given it up 99 percent. That one percent, I keep it just for me.) In case it hasn't become abundantly clear, I spend a lot of time deluding myself into thinking the guys in my life share my sentiments. This has caused me immeasurable pain and probably hindered any chance of having normal relations with guys who ACTUALLY like me. I never see the ones who are interested because I'm so in love with those who aren't. And so, I wanted so badly to be his downfall, when in reality I was a plaything and escape from a reality that he felt stifling. He was bored with his life and my life was boring, so we met in the middle. I have this rule. I never tell boys what their songs are. It just makes things too awkward if you're sitting at a bar and then HIS song comes on and HE KNOWS its his song. With this guy, I broke my rule -- I told him that "Be My Downfall" was one of his songs and he said he'd never heard of it. He never looked it up or downloaded it. Truthfully, he never mentioned it again. Heartbreak comes in bits and pieces in different moments all throughout your life. But sometimes, for about three minutes, it comes all at once.