The antenna boombox is scratching because you have blown out the sub, but you don't care. You're sprawled out on your stomach, feverishly writing down lyrics into your diary. The year is 1999, and blogs don't exist. At least not in this world.
So what are you writing for? Perhaps you'll carefully copy over the best of the lyrics into a love note, that you'll fold into an intricate design and press tightly into your boyfriend's hand the following morning, right before the bell rings.
Or maybe those lyrics will stay locked in your diary, meant for your eyes only. Perhaps they'll mend your heart through your first breakup, making you feel a little less alone as you drown in utter, heart wrenching misery. Or who knows, it could be the opposite. They might give you the courage to finally say hi to the most beautiful human being you have ever laid eyes on... even though he sits in the two-seater on the bus, a spot so coveted that only the most endowed junior high girls will ever experience the sheer euphoria of riding there.
But no matter if you were a regular in the two-seater or if you spent the majority of your adolescence desperately trying to be invisible, you relied on music, on the lyrics, to get you through.
I wish it were still that easy. That I could mend a broken heart by crying along with the Counting Crows Music Video on TRL. Or that my disposition could take a 180 when "Gangsta Paradise" came on and my parents were too preoccupied to tell me to 'turn that shit off'. Oh, and the inspirational ones. The songs that awakened in my preteen soul a deep yearning to travel, to see the world, to experience life outside of junior high drama. Oasis, Sublime, Dispatch, Third Eye Blind, Green Day, Foo Fighters, Matchbox Twenty, Alanis Morrisette...
They aren't the greatest musicians to ever grace the radio, but they did it for me. And every once in awhile when I feel so fed up that my only conceivable option is to return to my parents' house, curl up on the couch with funny bones and gushers and watch reruns of Wonder Years for eternity... 'Good Riddance' comes on and I'm reminded that everything is going to be just fine.