Tag Archives: Lullabies


The other night I was lying in bed, trying to sleep, because it’s important to sleep at least 18 hours a day, when a punk band started up next door. The apartment buildings on my street are of such a nature that a punk band playing next door is exactly like a punk band playing on top of your eyeballs. Except in the case of this band, the drummer was playing on one eyeball and the lead guitarist was playing on the other eyeball and suddenly I couldn’t coordinate my blinks. What I’m trying to say is that the band wasn’t very good. But I wasn’t too indignant about it because I really didn’t have anything else to do but lie there and listen. Eventually I fell asleep.

I was woken up at 2am by another punk band, this one far superior. They were loud and snotty but technically skilled, and I found myself regretting that no one had invited me to the party next door. Then again, I hadn’t invited anyone to come party with me in my room with the Hulu and the mac and cheese and the regression and the tears, so it was probably karma.

Then the superior punk band started playing a familiar song. This was the last thing I expected to happen, for the night I start recognizing songs that bands play at Brooklyn rooftop house parties is the same night that I’m officially cool, and I’m just not equipped to handle that kind of pressure. But I immediately recognized the song as “Sleeping Aides and Razorblades” by the Exploding Hearts. I fell asleep thinking, “Wow, the Exploding Hearts are right next door. I must have made some respectable life decisions after all.”

Then I woke up and googled The Exploding Hearts, just to confirm that I’d caught the Brooklyn leg of their Summer 2013 tour. I read that in July of 2003, when driving back to Portland from a gig in San Fransisco, the band’s van crashed on Interstate 5 in Oregon, killing three out of four members. They were 23, 21, and 20 years old.

Life is like this too often. You hear music in the night. It brings you a moment of pleasure. And then in the morning you find out that all the musicians are dead.

But I’m reluctant to leave on that note. In a few days the psychotropic drugs will finally kick in and make me regret being so liberal in my sadsack observations. So let’s try to fantasize about what it was to be happy, what it was to hear music, what it was to make it. One book I have about beating depression says that you should store up ten joyful memories that you can access when you get down. Number one: I cruise down the highway in a van with all my best friends. Number two: I win the heart of the girl next door.