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Why can’t we have it all?

31 Days of Brannan – Day 9

 

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Today’s Playlist:  Can’t Have It All

 

Author’s Note: Okay, so I wrote this one yesterday but like the dork I can be – I thought I pressed PUBLISH but instead only saved it as a draft. So here it is, a day late but as they say…

 

I’ve been contemplating the words to this song for some time now. It’s a concept that is not foreign to any of us – gay, straight, whatever race, creed or color. We want the best in life that it has to offer. Jay’s words in this song are universal in their reach and appeal. We’ve all been there at one time or another –

 

applying moisturizer in the microwave window
for the tenth time, he should have call me an hour ago
would he be here with flowers if i loved in Arizona?
they say there’s no love left in the big cities, it’s kinda true
i guess you’ll find me coming soon to the small town near you
i’ll sell my guitar so i can buy myself a tractor
fuck this, this can’t be my life
i moisturized ten times tonight
why can’t i sit down and write,
bring this question to light?

Chorus:
do you want a lover, or do you want a life?
one hand or the other, the butter or the bread knife?
do you choose winter, spring, summer, or fall?
it’s driving me crazy that i can’t have it all

 

The pondering of what if’s. Nothing could be more hellish or cyclic and demoralizing than pondering those romantically laden ‘what-if’s’ – am I right?

Yet, because we strive for that moment of recognition, the ‘I see you…’ from some we find attractive or desirable, if only to validate that we matter somehow in this crazy fucked up world. The constant swimming upstream when everyone else, who already have that special someone get to coast along with the flow of life headed in the opposite direction. If anything so we can put down the struggle to connect with another human being in a meaningful and fulfilling way.

I particularly like Jay’s turnabout moment in the ‘fuck this, this can’t be my life, I moisturized ten times tonight…’ – humorous and yet so revealing in how we all feel at that poignant moment when we feel we just can’t bear it any more. Then that specter called defeat looms over our shoulder and whispers how much simpler it’d be if we just gave up the struggle. If we just pursued some life endeavor that would cloud the loss in us. That would sweep it under the rug of being aggressive in some other fulfilling part of our psyche. Overwhelm the hole in our heart with other pursuits.

Then Jay poses the questions that hang in the balance – ‘Do you want a lover, or do you want a life?’  A simple, if complicated, question to ponder. Ultimately he is pressing the whole concept of why do we have to ponder one over the other at all. But he presses on with the inner debate –

 

if these walls could talk, they’d probably cry out for mercy
’till i’m outlined in chalk, i’ll be romantically thirsty
so i drink and i drink from the proverbial time sink
fuck this, this can’t be my life
tears flowing in full force tonight
why can’t i sit down and write,
bring this question to light?

Chorus:
do you want a lover, or do you want a life?
one hand or the other, the butter or the bread knife?
do you choose winter, spring, summer, or fall?
it’s driving me crazy that i can’t have it all

 

So now we’re at the emotive moment where we’re ready to throw in the towel. We’re over it – though our hearts scream and plead with us to keep up the search, to know that he’s out there, probably just as lost and lonely and we just haven’t turned the right corner, or bumped into them accidentally at the grocery store. You know, one of those movie land moments you see in all the rom-coms? But it is in the bridge that Brannan’s distinctive brand of pathos cuts and reveals the question we all have in ourselves. No matter how confident we may be in our lives, what we feel we’re worth, there is inherently some part of us deep within that constantly ponders – will someone find me special, find me worthy of their love and devotion?

 

Bridge:
do we hold the future, or does it come in peace?
and if it’s in my hands, are you sure it should be in brittle hands like these?
life, love, and the pursuit of, all the things they promised me
can i have all of the above? are the best things in life truly free?

 

These are heady moments when contemplating the value the love of another can bring to our lives. I’m lucky. I’ve got the man in my life that has blessed me with 20 years of his life by my side. Solid, unwavering and resolute that we’ll face everything together – up unto our last breaths. And if there’s a beyond… well, I’m sure we’d find each other then. Somehow.

Which brings us to the same round of questioning as before but with a defiant turn with the last line –

 

do you want a lover, or do you want a life?
one hand or the other, the butter or the bread knife?
do you choose winter, spring, summer, or fall?
it’s driving me crazy that i can’t have it all

 

And therein lies the rub: we should be able to have it all.

 


 

The Always, Then & Now Tour…

Please check out his site with links for his upcoming shows. I am definitely a late comer to the Brannan bandwagon whenever he pulls through my city. But now that I am going this year, I am making it a goal never to miss when he swings through town. I hope you take advantage of the opportunity as well. Also be sure to check out his web store at the following link.

Jay's Website - jaybrannan.com
Jay’s Website – jaybrannan.com



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