[identity profile] amethysting.livejournal.com

Little Boxes
Malvina Reynolds
Ear to the Ground
2000 (originally released: 1967)

Firstly, I have to touch on a phenomena that is limited exclusively to [livejournal.com profile] 5pm_weds: the precise moment when I think of the song I am going to post in response to a theme.  It's the thrilling sensation of being hit with an invisible wave that starts at my toes and works its way up to my head--leaving a trail of goosebumps in its wake.  If I'm walking, I skip up a step and pick up the pace; it's like turning the rows of a Rubik's cube and finally getting everything to line up in its place.

I love this theme because I love my neighborhood.  I loved NDG before I lived here, as if having a sense that this, at last, was the place where I belonged.  It is a true neighborhood.  I struggled with this theme, I think, because of this deep-rooted NDG-love.  NDG (and its inhabitants) never fail to surprise me.  Quite simply, it (and its inhabitants) are a little...diverse.  Even wacky, perhaps.  I wanted my song to capture that awesome weirdness, and the always-comfortable sense I have of fitting into it somehow.

I've said on a number of occasions how I could never imagine living in one of those condo developments many of my friends live in.  It's not to say that those homes and neighborhoods are not beautiful, but they aren't the neighborhood or sense of community that I want to experience.  In truth, I can't stand the idea of living somewhere where every home is a cookie cutout of the one beside it.  A neighborhood of identical homes stretching as far as the eye can see, each with its own neatly manicured lawn and well-tended garden.  This song perfectly encapsulates that other neighborhood--the one I am most definitely not drawn to.  I like that Malvina Reynolds's voice is strange (an honorary NDG resident if I ever saw one!) and the way both the music and words are kind of looped...like a conveyor belt in a factory churning out the same thing over and over again.  I realized today that I was struggling to find a song that would describe what NDG is--which started to prove a rather impossible feat.  Instead I've selected one that illustrates what it is not.



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