I can say with certainty that two of Peter Gabriel‘s greatest songs are Sledgehammer and In Your Eyes. Sledgehammer is, as of 2011, the most played music video in the history of MTV (and probably forever since MTV pretty much doesn’t play music videos anymore), and frankly, one of the all time great songs to come out of the 80’s.
That is all well and good, but there is a reason that In Your Eyes is the better of the two songs, and, though this scene:
does have a little to do with why In Your Eyes is a better song, it mostly comes down to the lyrics- In Sledgehammer, Pete G. is talking about one thing-
You could have a steam train
If you’d just lay down your tracks
I want to be your sledgehammer
Why don’t you call my name
Getting Laid. Layin’ pipe, layin’ track- whatever- he’s telling this lady (or possibly dude) that she just has to call and he’ll do what it takes to give her the sledgehammer.
And there’s nothing wrong with that- as far as I’m concerned, everyone should be getting laid more. But what makes In Your Eyes a better song is the context the song puts on meeting the right girl- ‘In your eyes, I see the doorway to a thousand churches, the resolution of all my fruitless searches…I want to be that complete.’
My friend Jon has this theory that there is one girl out there for every guy. Not like, there are 50% men and 50% women on the planet, so we can all match up, but more that there is ONE person who is right for YOU. Freely read about his trials and tribulations with that idea here.
Well, I don’t really believe that. Unfortunately, too, because what an amazing quest your life would become. I do think that it is much simpler than that. It just takes love, and the human capacity to love is abundant and limitless- but it is no easy thing. You’ve got to open yourself up to the possibility of that, and take a gamble or twenty on letting another human know that you are occasionally that vulnerable and naive that you might want to possibly dance in fountains and eat the same spaghetti and run through mountain valleys and make out in the rain and be barefoot in dewey glens and laugh inappropriately at bad jokes and hold them intensely and yet gently– you might have to tell another person that. But definitely not too early on. Because apparently there is a game to this whole thing, and even if that is something the other wants, they don’t want to know that that’s what you’re looking for, too, for a long while. But you need to at least be kind of on that level that you’re willing to take that risk, and crash and burn a few (hundred) times until you find somebody that’s on the same page.
I certainly intended this to be a nearly incoherent ramble on love and life when I started this post, and I think that I’ve hit that nail on the head, so let me attempt, now, to make a point on why this is important. But also, you should read this interview with Aziz Ansari because it is, at least, an interesting view on the nature of relationships in a world where you can build a wall of text messages around your heart to protect it in its fragile state.
I think there are two ways that you can live life- for yourself, or for others. Everything else, every other world view, is just a result of that basic idea. Money, power, influence, attention- all these things stem from living for yourself. But love, love is that word we’ve invented for living your life for those around you that matter to you. Being a romantic, falling in love, all that other shit- that’s just you living for others, and wanting to expand that circle of people you care about. It is a good thing. I think that you can be ingrained to be one way, and work to be the other. I believe that it is in my nature to live for myself, but I’ll be god damned if I won’t try as hard as I can to be the other way.
Get out there. Get heartbroken and get wild and take a few chances and fall madly, deeply, insanely in love. Because there are people out there who think the same way as you, but there’s only one way to figure that out.
I have to go now. It’s funny, though. All these words on this webpage, and really, I could have just put this up here, and kept my mouth shut:
And make no mistake- if you’re gonna buy into this theory, and into another person- be prepared to fight and struggle every day to make it real- because life is struggle (that’s the fun of it), and love is no different. It’s not riding off into the setting sun and everything is perfect. It’s more- enjoy the view, but get ready to climb down, and then up that next giant outrageous mountain.
Okay, enough rambling- I’ll let the Cougar play me out.