53 Mondays

by The Urbane Decay

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about

In 2007 I set myself a goal: Write and record a song on every Monday without fail.

Somehow I managed to achieve the goal, with pretty mixed results, for each of the 53 Mondays that calendar year. Even on July 30th when I'd had a wisdom tooth removed that morning. I'm proud I completed the project, if not every song or performance.

53 MONDAYS begins with me crushing on a too-young-for-me woman in Nanaimo, BC (tracks 1-35) and ends with me having moved to Toronto, ON, (tracks 36-53) to be with a different woman whom I was trying desperately to convince myself I was in love with.

I'm not sure I conceived of the resultant album being an audio journal of the year, but the unabashedly autobiographical style I was working in at the time determined it. Listening to the album is a very strange experience for me now as it details the what seems like the last gasp of my very extended adolescence. I really have trouble recognizing the self-deluded, insane person who wrote these songs.

At the time there weren't streaming services available where I could post these songs on my blog as they were written (Myspace was almost the only option and it had prohibitive upload limits at the time). The project would've been perfect for something like embedding Soundcloud players on a Wordpress blog, but Soundcloud wouldn't be founded until August of that year and Bandcamp wouldn't launch until 2008. It's hard to remember a world without these ubiquitous services now but such was the case.

It's probably for the best it was still the Internet dark ages, really, since the narrative would've taken a much different direction as I became more of a social pariah with each passing week and each passive aggressive and dirty-laundry-airing lyric. About halfway through the year I became aware of the negative effects the "honest" lyrics of my regular songs were having on my relationships and I began to back away from documenting the more personal aspects of my life. As a result, I began to concentrate on more mundane topics like job searches and public transit. By the end of the year a few of the songs in this project ("This Silent Night" for example) almost become outright lies in order to avoid awkward conversations about the lyrics—though in my defense, I can see in hindsight that at the time I was still lying to myself that the relationship was working out.

In 2008 I released the album with a 16 page zine that included actual diary excerpts giving each song context. They've been included in the "lyrics" section of each song here.

credits

released February 5, 2008

© 2007-2008 Jakob Rehlinger

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about

The Urbane Decay Toronto, Ontario

The Urbane Decay is an indie pop recording project mainly active between 2002-2009, mainly by Jakob Rehlinger, mainly maudlin and mopey.

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Track Name: Not Quite Yet
PART ONE: NANAIMO

January 1st, 2007

Over x-mas I started hanging out with Marie from the coffee shop and I’m in the process of having my heart broken because she’s in love with some guy in Ireland who’s in the process of breaking her heart . I guess 2007 is going to be like every other year.

New Years Resolution: Stop fucking shit up.

-----------------------

Happy New Year
Not quite yet
It’s the same disappointments
And the same regrets

Why can’t it be easy
Like fixing a bike?
Just meet a nice girl
And have a nice life

Why can’t it be simple
Just this once?
With no broken hearts
That shatter for months

Happy New Year
Yeah, I guess
I’ll be here for you
I’ll do my best
Track Name: Afraid of Bees
January 8th

If I hear one more well meaning remark about how I’m a “catch” and anyone would be “crazy” not to date me when clearly I’m not a catch because no-one is crazy enough to date me… It ’s mostly just infuriating to hear when it comes from lips that rank among those who’d rejected me.

-----------------------

Women still don’t want me
But there’s no end to the line
Of women lining up to tell me
Those other women
are out of their minds

“If they don’t want you
they just don’t know
what they want”

Well, they seem to want
those other guys
Or to be left alone to cry

You’re afraid I’m falling
And I’m afraid of bees
But I’m more afraid you’ll never be
Falling in love with me

If I reached out
Would you let me hold your hand?
‘Cause you know, you gotta know
I’d never let you go

I don’t understand
how he can stand
to let you go
Track Name: I Don't Believe In Karma
January 15th, 2007

Having decided to start calling myself a Taoist, I start ed to look into Buddhism. So far Taoism the only belief system that ’s made sense in my life. Unless I count Star Wars. Which I probably should not . I do have some issues with ludicrous ideas like karma and reincarnation . Still hanging out with Marie.

------------------------------

I don’t believe in Karma
I don’t believe in reincarnation
I have some issues with Dharma
I don’t believe in Nirvana
It always seemed a little fishy to me
I tried real hard but I guess
I don’t wanna

I don’t believe in any kind of heaven
I don’t believe in any kind of heaven
I don’t believe in any kind of heaven
Except the heaven by your side
Track Name: I Lost My Zen
January 22nd, 2007

Turns out the blissful existence of “following the Tao” is only obtainable when things are already going well on their own . It ’s easy to live in the moment when the moment is good. I think I’ve been lying to myself that I can handle this ambiguous situation with Marie.

-------------------------

I lost my Zen
I don’t know how or when
But it’s gone
It’s gone, it’s really gone

This weekend I fell to pieces
Torn at the folds and creases
I fell apart like an envelope
Full of bits of my heart
Sent in the mail
Placed at your door
At your door
You’re never going to forgive me

When I ruin this friendship we have
On that day when I look in yours eyes
You know what I’m going to say
Track Name: Quiet Reading
January 29th, 2007

Marie was over yesterday. We had “silent reading” in the afternoon as she had studying to do. It was really nice and there were several moments which would have been “cinema perfect ” if I’d kissed her. But something in her manner always tells me that would be a tragic mistake.

----------------------

When we were reading on the couch
You leg was keeping my feet warm
I may have seemed serene and indifferent
But inside my heart there raged a storm

It was so hard not to touch you
Not to shower you in kisses like the rain
Not to say it over and over
Not to say again and again

How I love you, how I love you
How I love you, how I love you
I said I was going to live without fear
But I was afraid you’d cover your ears

And sing: “La la la la la la la la la – I can’t hear you!”
Track Name: I'm So Bored At Work
February 5th, 2007

The monotony of this job is absolutely fucking killing me. Lately it ’s a double-whammy of head-exploding office politics bullshit and soul-withering tedium. I thought I could stay at this one for a while. It ’s fucking destroying me. I just feel like running away.

--------------------

I’m so fucking bored at work
I can’t go in the morning
I may just go berzerk
So if I just show up
at your door without warning
Have a bag packed, you’re ditching school
You’re sick of classes and I’m sick of rules
Because I’m so bored of work
We’re hitting the road in the morning
And your professors are all total jerks
We’re hitting the road in the morning
But we both know I’m all talk
I’ll turn off my alarm and punch the clock
I won’t be standing at your door
I’m going to work in the morning
Track Name: I Want To Be Let Down By You
February 12th, 2007

I’m coming to terms with the fact not hing will, or can ever, happen with Marie. All the single women in town are either a decade younger than me or just aren’t interested. I need to get out of Nanaimo.

-------------------------

I wanted to be wanted by you
You don’t want to be wanted by anyone
Just to fade like a dimming star
Not blaze like a shining sun

It’s scary to be needed
And I always end up
letting people down too
But everyone lets everyone down

And I so wanted
to be let down by you
Everyone lets everyone down
I so want to be needed by you
Track Name: Permanent Sleep
February 19th, 2007

We had the CD release part y for “Crushed” last weekend. On her blog my ex Chelsee called our set “what amounts to a recital of his diary, the kind with a fun-fur pink heart on the cover and a little lock on the side.” Tracy said inviting all my ex’s to the show and singing songs about them made me look “undateable.” I suspect this is why Marie's valentine to me was decidedly platonic. I feel tired. I’m impressed Britney Spears shaved her head. I wonder if this is how it feels.

--------------------------

I want to fall asleep
For about 10,000 years
Nobody wake me
Until all the people are all gone
Nobody wake me ‘til it’s clear

I’m going to sleep,
to sleep, to sleep
Track Name: Punk Rock Party
February 26th, 2007

Ken had a Punk Rock themed costume party. I aimed for Elvis Costello but hit “investment banker circa 1985” instead. I got too drunk. Again . Either a need to blow-of f steam or just escape everything. Tracy and I sat on the kitchen floor and talked about what had prevented us from dating after Chelsee and I broke up. Ken overheard and came up and told us we're absolutely not allowed to date. Matt and I sat on the back porch smoking cigarettes of all things which means I’m getting nihilistic again. Matt pierced his ears with safety pins which probably means he is too.

-----------------------------------

Got too drunk at the punk rock party
Didn’t mean to hit it so hard
Comparing pain and comparing scars
Somewhere we took it too far
Matt’s sticking safety pins in his ears
Tracy’s in the Bathroom in tears
Dark things none of us confronts
Because we’re only young once
Only young once

Youth is flaming like a torch
Smoking cigarettes on the porch
I haven’t been this lonely in months
And we’re only young once
Only young once

As I spin my way to the door
I reckon I’m not young anymore
Track Name: The Future Has Been Undone
March 5th, 2007

I’ve been walking around in a black tunnel . It just keeps going deeper underground and I can’t see any exits. I’ve also been drinking alone. A lot. By that I mean frequently and copious amounts. Wine mostly. In the bath. Carissa made a list on a whiteboard of everyone she knows in two collumns: Sane / Insane. I was in the insane collumn. Marie told me not to obsess over it.

------------------------

Sometimes the future
feels like it’s been destroyed
You tell me to relax
and stop being so paranoid
Sometimes the future
feels like it’s been undone
I’m in the insane collumn
on the white board
But I’m not the only one

I drank a bottle of wine and a half
Suddenly things didn’t seem so bad
I didn’t cry myself to sleep in the bath
Suddenly nothing seemed so bad

Sometimes the future
feels like it’s been destroyed
You tell me to relax
and stop being so paranoid
Track Name: I Got The Sick
March 12th, 2007

I felt pretty good this morning. Then Marie told me I should because every morning we “choose” our attitude for the day. Then told me if I couldn’t “decide” to be happy, that I had a mental health issue. And I was suddenly back in that black tunnel.

-------------------------------

This morning I was so damn happy
It was like the black clouds had drifted away
It was kind of even a sunny day
But by lunch it had turned into a swift kick
A one-two punch
I was mulling over something my friend said to me
About choosing you attitude every morning
You’re having a good day
And these platitudes come at you without any warning
A one-two punch
A swift kick
Maybe she got the wisdom
But I got the sick
Track Name: Cheesecake and Beer
March 19th, 2007

Went to my parents’ house for dinner to celebrate my mom’s birthday. It didn’t take long before they started asking me if I was dating anyone. Unbearable.

-----------------------

Happy Birthday Momma
Cut your cheesecake with a knife
As you serve me a slice
Casually ask me if there’s any women in my life
Happy birthday momma,
I think I’ll have that second beer now
Track Name: Beautiful Sky
March 26th, 2007

Marie and I had dinner. She insisted on paying. When she dropped me off we sat in her car and looked at the sky for a while which was a really gorgeous indigo colour. It was another one of those perfect moments for kissing her I let slip by. We agreed I’d come to Victoria and buy her dinner but somehow I know it ’s not going to happen.

------------------------

The sky is the colour of paint
Used by somebody in love
When they’re painting the ceiling
To look like how they feel inside
Like a twilit sky
When they’re painting the bedroom
To look like how they feel in their heart
Not bright but not dark

Maybe the stars will fall
If we wish them to
Maybe the stars will fall
For me and you

“Such a beautiful sky,” you say
“Such beautiful light,” you say
“Such a beautiful, beautiful day”
Such beautiful sky,
such beautiful light
I don’t want to say goodbye
Tonight, tonight, tonight
Track Name: Kittens In a Sack
April 2nd, 2007

According to Tracy I have a reputation around town as being “girl crazy.” Personally, I don’t think I’m so much girl crazy as “single.” She also said she’d never date me because she didn’t want Urbane Decay songs written about her. I opted not to tell her how many had already been written.

----------------------

You said word on the street
Is I’ve completely gone girl-crazy
I hardly think that’s true
But I’ve been girl-crazy for you

And if you crush me back
I’ll stick all my other crushes
In a burlap sack
And drown them by the bullrushes
Like kittens in a sack

You said word on the street
Is I’ve completely gone girl-crazy
I hardly think that’s fair
I’m just putting myself out there

And if give me a chance
I’d burn all the poems I wrote
in fits of romance
And toss the ashes off a boat
All the poems that I wrote
for all my other crushes
I’d toss them off a boat
and drown them
by the bullrushes
like kittens in a sack
Like kittens in a sack
Track Name: First Crush
April 9th, 2007

I stumbled across Ellen, my first ever crush, on Facebook somehow. We're meeting for coffee. And I’d just been talking about her (her brother actually) with Stephen last week. Weird...

-------------------

The first crush I ever had
On the very first day of the first grade
She was blond like Chrissy
on Three’s Company
And all the difference that it made

I found her again
just this week on Facebook
Maybe this time
she’ll give me a second look

First crush
You made me blush
First crush
You made my blood rush
First crush
You made my heart gush
First crush
You made my brain mush

Is she really going to come
To my gig next Tuesday night?
I might hide in the smoke room
Too afraid of fright
Track Name: Raspberry Pie
April 16th, 2007

After a hectic weekend of too many gigs, I’ve suddenly, unexpectedly, come to a very Zen-like place where I’m 100% okay with being single. To celebrate I baked a pie. Raspberry, of course. The first pie I’ve ever baked. Life is suddenly beautifully mundane. But I need another weekend to rest up

----------------------------

Cat’s been scratching the couch
So I kicked her out
Ate my dinner on the couch
Rice’n’beans in a pita pouch
And a dark, dark ale
Yet I’m feeling so pale
And a dark, dark ale
My soul is so very pale

It’s Monday Nite —
I need another weekend
It’s Monday Nite —
I need another weekend

Gonna bake me a pie
Dunno why, I just wanna try
A raspberry pie
Dunno why, I just wanna try
I would share it with you
It’s been a pretty good Monday.
Track Name: Missed Connections
April 23rd, 2007

So, Eli and Danielle have been trying to set me up with their friend Nicole on Facebook. “Not a fucking chance in hell ,” I said. First of all I’m enjoying this new found acceptance of being single and second she lives in bloody Toronto. The ot her side of the country, they may have not iced. And I promised myself no more internet entanglements. Curiosity (or boredom or a combination) of course got the better of me at work and I looked at he picture. And she’s pretty cute. So I messaged her. And she’s pretty cool . I’m supposed to phone her tonight. Aiyee. The kicker of it all is she was living in Victoria until last week. Makes me think of the “Miss ed Connections” column on Craigslist.

---------------------------

Missed Connection —
We never had a chance
Missed Connection —
Do you think had a chance?

Our friends meant to set us up
But they never did
Missed Connections
I’ll write to you in Missed Connections
And if I don’t die of fright,
I’ll call you tonight
If I don’t die of fright,
I’ll call you on the phone
Track Name: Up In The Air
April 30th, 2007

Things with Nicole are moving fast. We’re writing a flurry of emails by day and talking on the phone by night. I wish we could just have coffee and get to know each other face to face. You don’t really know on the internet/phone. It ’s frustrating. But magical .

---------------------

I have a Monday off and all I want to do
Is go have coffee, go to a movie with you
But you’re way out there. Way out in Toronto
But until we meet, until we hold hands
We’ll don’t know
Until we kiss, until we cuddle
We’ll never know

I thought it was too late
To meet a soul mate
I have a Monday off
A should get on a plane, get out there
Because until we kiss, until we cuddle
It’s up in the air
Until we kiss, until we cuddle
We’re up in the air
Track Name: Phone Date
May 7th, 2007

I have a girlfriend. 3,000 miles away and we’ve only spoken
on the phone. Oddly, my dateability in town seems to have increased. When you start dating you always become more desirable. Or, being taken , you just accept attention instead of doubting and dissecting it to death . Or your ego is pumped-up and you get totally delusional. Which is probably the case here.

------------------

I’m dating a girl
Though we’ve never met before
We talk online
we talk on the phone
I’m missing a girl
Though we’ve never met before

And like clockwork
out of the woodwork
Girls are knocking at my door
They smell blood
Another bachelor’s got it bad

I’m missing a girl
Though we’ve never met before
We date on the phone
we date on the phone
Track Name: Quitter
May 14th, 2007

I think I’m going to quit my job and move to Toronto. It’s the only thing that makes sense at this point. I have to get out of this town and this job.

-----------------------

I’m gonna quit my job
And fl y away to you girl
gonna quit my job
And fl y away to you girl

Gonna sprout some silver wings
And fl y into the sky

I’m gonna quit all this bullshit
And lay by your side
Gonna quit all this bullshit
And lay by your side

Gonna lay with you
Under the cherry moonlight
Track Name: Make Love, Not Babies
May 21st, 2007

I guess falling in love naturally makes you think about babies. I think I really don’t want to contribute to the spread of humanity. I found a group called the Voluntary Human Extinction Movement (www.vhemt.org). Stephen says there’s report s the bees are vanishing from the earth. Who’s going to pollinate the plants? We’re fucked.


---------------------

There’s too many ants on this hill
Too many dogs in the trash
Some people are scrambling for food
And others are scrambling for cash

Make love, not babies
Human beings are just another form of rabies
And the dogs are so sick
The dogs are so sick

Too many cooks in the stew
There ain’t no fi sh in the see
Too many text messages buzzing in the air
And now no one can find the bees

Make love, not babies
Human beings are just another form of rabies
And the dogs are so sick
The dogs are so sick
Track Name: 60 Seconds
May 28, 2007

Nicole is writing a song for me. No one’s ever written a song about me before. She’s going to sing it when I visit in June. Terribly, incredibly excited. I feel like we don’t have time to waste. I’ve finally found someone. I feel full of sunshine and longing.

------------------

You wrote a song I’ve never heard
Not a lick, not a word
But I know it by heart

You have lips I’ve never kissed
Not in the rain, not in the mist
Yet I am so sure of this

I know your body’s every curve
Every sinew and every nerve
Every texture and every taste
And every minute that we waste
Is sixty seconds that we waste
Sixty seconds that we’ve lost forever
Track Name: Five More Sleeps
June 4th, 2007

Only five more sleeps until I see Nicole! I feel like a little kid again. Like it’s Christmas.

--------------------

Five more sleeps
until I’m sleeping beside you
Five more dreams
And I won’t be dreaming no more
Five more mornings
Until you’re suddenly too close
Five more showers
Until I get you out of your clothes
Five more nights until our dreams
Melt together like moonbeams

All my dreams seem
to turn into nightmares
What start as feather beds,
end up as electric chairs

Five more nights
until the sun never sets
until the sun never sets again
Track Name: Neither Here Nor There
June 11th, 2007

I’m in Toronto! Things are as good as hoped for with Nicole. And I even like Toronto more than expected. It ’s not all grey crumbling buildings and smog like I’d been lead to believe. But maybe that ’s because I’m in love. I could really see myself living here. People are friendlier than on the west coast too. And I haven’t seen a single meth addict on the street since I got here.

--------------------

You walked me around the city
That was neither ugly nor pretty
And wasn’t really any more polished
And wasn’t really anymore gritty

It was the same old records being bought
And the same crack pipes being sold
And maybe it’s because the sun gets so hot
It makes the buildings look so old

And the people on the subway
Seem full of the same fears and cares
As people on subways everywhere
But that’s neither here nor there

Because I’m here now
(You’re here now)
I’m here now
(I don’t want you to go back there…)
Track Name: No Longer Whole
June 18th, 2007

I’m back in Nanaimo and I feel like part of my soul has been ripped from me. Which is good—you should feel like that when you leave your lover behind—but it ’s almost unbearable. At least I know I’m moving there in September.

-----------------------

I’m no longer whole
I forgot a piece of my soul
under your pillow
under your head
it dreams beside you
in your bed
where we used to lay
where we used to sleep
where our kisses were dark
and our kisses were deep
and the light of the morning
thick as molasses;
as our hands in the night
poured over our skin
feeling each other’s fears
forgiving our sins
two lonely hearts
joined at the soul
no longer apart
finally whole
shooting like sparks
buring like coal
but now we’re apart
I’m no longer whole
Track Name: The River Knows
June 25th, 2007

Eventually it had to happen. I was bound to start obsessing over Nicole’s ex’s. I feel like I’m 18 again — freaking out over stuff that doesn’t matter. I have to remember what the Tao tells me about the past not existing. Only the present matters. Tao didn’t help me out much after that phone call and the conversation about Nicole's romantic past. Not as much as drinking several beers and watching horror movies at Ken’s did.

--------------------

After I placed the phone back in the cradle
My stomach was sick with writing snakes
So I went to my friends’ place
and we got to drinking
And I got myself a little drunk

The Past is a Kundalini snake
you shouldn’t let beneath your skin
As we grow we shed all our mistakes
We leave a trail of dry and withered sins

The River knows which Way to flow
The River knows which Way to flow
Track Name: Promise Ring Blues
July 2nd, 2007

I’ve start ed to get ready for the move by tackling my closets. I should have got ten rid of this stuff years ago. I found a box of promise rings and letters from old relationships. Nothing’s ever worked out. But it ’s my parents’ 40th anniversary today. So I guess some things do.

------------------------

I’ve been cleaning out my closets
of the junk from my past
Of the flotsam and jetsom
of loves that didn’t last

All those forgotten hearts
I was keeping in the dark

I’ve been tearing up my journals
from when my heart got broken
I don’t need no souvenirs
of words that should never
have been spoken

And there’s cockles of my heart
I’d rather keep hidden in the dark

I found a box of promise rings
and thought about your wedding band
We’ve both promised things
We’ve worn them on our hands

And some 40 years ago today
my parents joined their hearts
Traded golden rings
and started rutting in the dark
Track Name: Dirty Old Records
July 9th, 2007

I must really be in love because I’m selling my vinyl. I have 13 crates packed up to sell that Jack's coming over to look at. I’m allowing myself to keep six, but I suspect I could cut it down to one or two if I tried. I own too much stuff . And owning hundreds of records seems simply absurd.

-------------------

Nothing here but a bunch of old records
Box ‘em up and I’m selling ‘em off
I haven’t got much use
for people singing the blues
They’re just a bunch of dirty old records
Box ‘em up and I’m selling ‘em off

Nothing here but a bunch of dust
and nothing but some cardboard sleeves
Nothing but some vinyl circles
Somebody come buy them please

Lots of love songs
That ended terribly wrong
Nothing but a bunch of dirty old records
Box ‘em up and I’m selling ‘em off
Track Name: Nine Working Days
July 16th, 2007

Only nine more days of work then I’m free. I’ve promised myself that whatever I end up doing in Toronto, it won’t be as soul withering as here at the magazine. Better to work for minimum wage at a record store.

--------------------

I’m leaving my job in nine working days
Selling everything I own and moving away
I’ll find something else whatever it pays
The kind of job I can quit

The kind where they don’t care if you’re late
The kind where you show up and get paid
I’m getting off this “crazy train”
I’m leaving my job in nine working days
Selling my couch and my car

So when I fall,
I’ll fall in your arms
So when you fall
you’ll fall in my arms
Track Name: Lord of the Flies
July 23rd, 2007

With all the sorting of junk and packing I’ve been doing aft er work, I haven’t done the dishes in a while. I came home to literally hundreds of newly hatched flies in my kitchen. It was like a horror movie or the apocalypse. I went all Resident Evil on their ass with a can of Raid. I think one of the boxes I got from my parents last night must have been infested with eggs. The sound of hundreds of slowly dying flies is, FYI, sickening.

---------------------

I came home
to a kitchen full of flies
A hundred or so
and a few thousand eyes

They were hanging on the window sill
trying to find a mate
They were eating scraps of food
and fucking on the plates

I came home
to a kitchen full of flies
I sprayed them
with a can of insecticide
And I listened to them die
Track Name: Rotten Wisdom
July 30th, 2007

I got a wisdom toot h extracted today. Does that make me less wise? Or just more likely to watch movies and eat pudding?

-----------------------

Today I was behooved
to have my wisdom removed
I thought it would make me more wise
Able to discern the truth within lies

It was rotting in my mouth
I had to get it out
Before it poisoned my soul
blackened it like coal
Today I was behooved
to have my wisdom removed

Before it poisoned my soul
Before it poisoned my soul
Track Name: Nite Voices
August 6th, 2007

The teenagers who live next door are me bonkers with their constant all-night raging house parties. It’s the fucking landlords son so I can’t even fucking complain. Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad if they didn’t listen to crunk. Glad I’m moving. If I wasn’t I’d have to do something.

------------------------

The youth next door, living it up
Raging hard, without letting up

A voice cries out in the night
Ricochets off the street lights

Every night...
I’m glad I’m moving out
Can’t take another night
Track Name: Zombie Town
August 13th, 2007

I’m sick of this town. I’m of the meth zombies roaming everywhere. I’m sick of the grey and the dirt and the apathy and the feeling like nothing you do matters. I hate how I feel like this town is forcing me to leave. It ’s strange to feel rage for a whole city; for a way of life.

---------------------------

Everywhere I look there’s zombies
In the alleys, on their knees
Walking despite their death
Reanimated by crystal meth

DEATH! DEATH! DEATH! DEATH!

Take me down to Zombie Town

ZED-OH-EM-BEE-AYE-EEE!
Track Name: New Life
August 20th, 2007

Nicole is here in Nanaimo! Helping me pack. I’m taking her to Coombs today to meet the parents and see where I grew up. My new life start s now.

--------------------------

It’s the very first week of my brand new life
Going home to show off the future wife
My mom will hint at grandchild hopes
My dad will make his corny jokes
We’ll walk around the old homestead
and I’ll wish we just stayed in bed
Starting, starting, starting
our brand new life
Track Name: Goodbye Terminal Ave
August 27th, 2007

I’ve been in this apartment for five years. We had a going away party/show/art sale. Nicole and I sang a set. Chelsee sat directly in front of her and bawled her eyes out. Still, the room felt full of love. I also sold a lot of paintings (honestly, this was shocking). The night made me more fond of this town and everyone here. Chelsee told me not to “fuck things up” in Toronto. I told her I planned to do my best not to.

---------------------------

Goodbye Terminal Avenue
Goodbye Helen and Steve
I enjoyed havin’ you
For neighbors but I have to leave
There comes a time you have to leave

Goodbye Terminal Avenue
Goodbye junkies and hoes
I’ve taken all I can of you
And now it’s time to go
It’s really time to go

I never thought I’d live
Here as long as I did
A street down from “easy”
One row over from “skid”

Goodbye Terminal Avenue
Track Name: Hello New Town
PART TWO: TORONTO

September 3rd, 2007

In Toronto now. We’re in a room in a friend’s basement in the dreary East End. I’m feeling utterly disconnected from everything. I didn’t expect to feel this way in the first week. Trying not to feel like I've made a huge mistake. Once my stuff arrives and I start working it ’ll be okay. I just feel lost today. At least Nicole has a guitar and I have a set of keys now.

-----------------------------

Hello new town
I came from far away
With just a suitcase and my heart
Treat me right and I’ll do the same
Don’t let everything fall apart
Everything I knew is far away
Track Name: On The TTC
September 10th, 2007

I’m filling my time exploring the city, riding the TTC. I’m sort of figuring out where everything is. Trying to figure out how to connect with the “scene” here, going to record stores and stuff. Seems like there’s no unity here — like there’s a bunch of little scenes vaguely linked together. I think I might start a zine. I’ve been painting in the basement and watching Star Trek. Avoiding the sun like a vampire.

--------------------------------

There’s no reason to leave the house
This neighborhood is nothing to see
So I make my way down to Queen Street
And try to make friends
with the record store geeks

I spend my days on the TTC
With nothing to do and nowhere to be

We might have somewhere to live now
Way on the other side of town
With cute little streets and coffee shops
Close to where the subway stops

I spend my days on the TTC
With nothing to do and nowhere to be
Track Name: I Guess I Didn't Care
September 17th, 2007

Out walking today I found a dead squirrel on the side of the road. He looked like he just fell over dead — mid-stride. I thought it was odd no one had cleaned it up. But then I just kept walking too.

----------------------------

This morning after I returned a DVD
A DVD about The Queen
to the corner grocery
I saw a squirrel in the street
Stiff and dead laying on his side
Laying on his side without a mark
like he just simply died
Like he might have froze to death
or maybe ran out of breath
And his fur danced in the breeze
and the leaves were turning in the trees
And it looked like no one cared
No one cared; they just left him there
I guess I didn’t care
I didn’t care; I just left him there
And I noticed the leaves
are turning red in the trees
Track Name: I Rescued Your Diaries
September 24th, 2007

I found Nicole’s diaries in the trash. Which is only odd because when we made a bit of a ritual out of burning mine in a campfire last month she said she wanted to keep her ’s. Which is fine, of course, but I’m wondering why she now has thrown them out in secret. It could be because every other entry seems to be about her past romantic encounters. I want to ask her about why she's secretly discarded them, but I'm obviously going to have to tell her I didn't read them. This is awkward.

-----------------------------

I rescued your diaries
from the garbage can
after you went to work
When we burned mine you said
you were keeping yours
But you threw them out in secret
and I had to wonder why
Were you just protecting me
from my own curiosity?
Or were you just burying the past
under egg shells and banana peels—
memories you do not feel anymore

Don’t worry, I didn’t read them
I wrapped them in a plastic bag
You can throw them out again
If that’s what you really want to do
but only if that’s what you want to do

And this time
Let’s do it together
This time
Let’s do it together
Track Name: IKEA Dresser
October 1st, 2007

We’ve moved! Into a great new apart ment in Bloor West Village.
Our first real place together. Feels like things are looking up. And now that we have a place, I can finally get my stuff shipped here. Home at last!

--------------------------

Goodbye Springdale Blvd
Goodbye Coxwell Station
Goodbye basement room
with no air circulation

And feeling — dislocated
And feeling — like a wraith

Like a grave that’s been vacated
Or a priest who’s lost his faith
Assembling our IKEA dresser
in out first apartment together

We have a home on Jane Street
Track Name: Thanks Be Given
October 8th, 2007

Went to the apartment upstairs for Thanksgiving turkey. Nicole's coworker lives up there (how we got the downstairs place). Anyway, seems like vaguely absurd holiday in this day and age. With climate change and Darfur and all that. Thanks to who? God? Thanks for what? Pie? Wine?

------------------------

Thanks be given for the bird
Thanks be given for the wine
And for the global warming
and the land mines

Thanks be given for the gravy
Thanks be given for the pie
And for the smog and garbage
and the little white lies
we are told and we tell
about Heaven, about Hell

And the poison in the well
like the little white lies we tell

Thanks be given
but to who?
Track Name: Interpersonal
October 15th, 2007

It ’s time to dust of f the resumé and start looking for work. I’m feeling useless. I need to feel productive. And working on paintings no one will see and music no one’s ever going to hear isn’t doing it for me anymore. I don’t think I’ll feel like I’ve really moved here until I’m working. This is the longest I’ve been unemployed since my nervous breakdown in 2000 and I
spent a year on EI.

----------------------------

Work history?
It’s no mystery
I’ve worked everywhere
and they loved me there
I brought the coffee in;
I ran the baby pool
Yeah, I only left
to go back to school

Give me a job
I’m a real team player
A dynamic hard worker
with exquisite interpersonal skills

I got certificates
and I got degrees
Seven years experience
in the Industry
I can multitask
I’ve got the skills
I can YouTube and Facebook
while I pay my bills

Give me a job
I’m a real team player
A dynamic hard worker
with exquisite interpersonal skills
Track Name: The Boilerman
October 22nd, 2007

Life has taken on a vague, listless quality. Wake up, apply for jobs, walk, bed, repeat. Winter is coming, furnace got turned on today. Drank coffee on the steps of a church, watched traffic go by and listened to Thom Yorke's 'The Eraser'.

-----------------------------

Sitting on the steps
of a red-brick church
where the saints
and the gargoyles perch
The busses stop
and the busses start
The cars hiss by
like deflating hearts
In the basement
the Boilerman stokes the fire
Track Name: Schadenfreude
October 29th, 2007

Found out my ex-friend, occasional "on the drunken down low" lover Kevin is dying of a brain-tumor There was a time I would have wished it on him since he was the roommate who Tikki, my girlfriend of the time, cheated on me with. Hypocritical on my part? Yes. Which makes it even more difficult to send some kind of message of support. I never really forgave him. Not because of the girl though. She was toxic on her own. So was I. We all were. Young, fucked up and unhealthy.

-----------------------

The blackness from her soul
got into your head
I won’t pretend
I never wished you dead

Schadenfreude can be enjoyed
at this time of year

The Reaper stands
behind you on hallows eve
Tears fall like wet
October leaves

Schadenfreude can be enjoyed
at this time of year
Track Name: Hired Gun
November 5th, 2007

Haven’t found permanent work yet. I’ve been picking up temp jobs. It ’s kind of interesting to walk into an office for a day. Like watching a workplace sitcom. You don’t get much respect though.

----------------------------

I’m a hired gun
I don’t do it for fun
I’m a cog in the wheel
I don’t get paid to feel
Track Name: Note To Self
November 12th, 2007

Being out of work is really getting to me. I feel simply purposeless. I don’t feel connected to the city at all. Like I’m still just visiting. It ’s taking its toll on things with Nicole and I too. I’m depressed and just simply feel emasculated in a profound way. It ’s not a money thing, I just need to be doing something. I guess I can t really complain though I’m not stuck in the slums of Rio.

----------------------------

Remember this
when you’re falling apart:

They got it worse in Afghanistan
They got it worse in Rio de Janiero

When you can’t find a job
and your coffee’s gotten cold, remember:

They got it worse in the Baltic states
They got it worse in Africa

When your girlfriend’s mad
because you seem to have lost
all your passion, remember:

They got it worse in the Middle East
They got it worse in the USA

When your life has no purpose
and you feel you’ve lost your connection
to the community and all you do is walk
around, alone, remember, remember this:

They got it worse in Afghanistan
They got it worse in Rio de Janiero
They got it worse in the Baltic states
They got it worse in the U-S-of-A
Track Name: Produktiv
November 19th, 2007

More temp work. This company might hire me permanently. Or they might not . I hope someone hires me soon . Anyone, anywhere.

------------------------------

Productive
Productive
Productive
Productivity

I want to go to work
on Monday mornings
Even if it’s really very boring
I just want to feel
productive again
I want to ride the
commuter train

Productive
Productive
Productive
Productivity
Track Name: Zeros and Ones
November 26th, 2007

Most of social interaction is online, with people thousands of miles away. There’s something very modern and very wrong about that. No wonder I feel so disconnected. I’m doing better than Andrew, I think, though. He’s isolated himself in a farmhouse in a small maritime village.

-----------------------------

Sending postcards
to people I only
Speak to playing online Scrabble
and occasional Facebook babble
and occasional internet babble

We all become ones and zeros
We all become zeros and ones

I talked to Andrew on the phone
in our own ways, we’re both alone

We all become ones and zeros
We all become zeros and ones
Track Name: Like a Tree
December 3rd, 2007

I got a job! How’s that for a birthday wish granted!? The Ministry of the Environment no less. We had some friends over to celebrate and eat cake and all that. Launched my online store too. I feel like the world is suddenly blossoming with possibilities again. At the same time, I feel old. Less alive. Spread thin.

--------------------------

It’s getting colder
I’m another year older and I
Wonder if I’m growing up
Another year older
I’m growing colder does that
mean I’m growing up?
When I was a child
Adults seemed emotionless
Every year I
feel my emotions less
Does that mean I’m
growing up or
slowly dying
outward from the core
like a tree – count my rings
like a tree – count my rings
It’s getting colder
I’m another year older and I
Wonder if I’m growing up
Track Name: Still Birth
December 10th, 2007

I might have been wrong about finding a job being the cure for my depression . Or maybe it just takes time. And maybe I’m not as fucked up as I think I am sometimes. Love the job though . Even feel like the world might not be doomed aft er all.

-----------------------------

Working for the Ministry
of Mother Earth
Wonder if I’ll ever be
more than a still birth

Maybe I’m wrong
about the end of the world
Maybe I’m wrong
about my head, girl
What if I’m wrong?
about the end of it all
What if I’m wrong?
Blame has to fall

Maybe I’m wrong...
Track Name: Knee Deep in a Snowy Day
December 17th, 2007

Big snow! Following behind a coworker at lunch, I noticed there’s something intimate about stepping in someone else’s snowy foot prints. Trying not to read into that or let it make me feel like I'm cheating on Nicole. Which is does, somehow. If I were to be honest, I've been noticing other women a lot lately.

---------------------------

Knee deep in a snowy day
I follow your footprints into the grey
Track Name: This Silent Night
December 24th, 2007

Sounds like crazy shit went down at the annual Rawk-a-Thon in Nanaimo—big punk rock charity show held every December 23rd. Last year’s seems like a lifetime ago. I miss everyone and it ’s strange not seeing my family this year. But it ’s also Nicole’s and my first x-mas together. Trying not to wonder if we'll share another.

-------------------------------

I’m not going home this year
I missed the Rawk-a-thon
They rocked with me gone
I’m bet no one shed a tear

This silent night is me and you
Our first Christmas
It’s all new!
It’s all new!

At work we got to leave early
Because it’s Christmas Eve, girlie
Our first Christmas Eve
Track Name: Resolve
December 31st, 2007

Feeling blue this New Year’s Eve. I always do. My least favourite holiday. I guess I’m finding this New Year’s bitter-sweet. Caught between the love I found and the friendships I lost. I don’t think I fucked anything up. It's just gotten fucked up on its own somehow. So I guess that resolution stuck, anyway.

------------------------------

I always hated New Years Eve
It’s never a good time
Expectations run too high
I never cared for Auld Lang Syne
Should acquaintance be forgot
Where I left it at the bar
I guess it wasn’t worth a lot
I guess somethings never are

I stuck to my resolution
I didn’t fuck shit up too bad
I accomplished all my goals
the only one I ever had
Just to find someone to love
and not fuck it up too bad

I stuck to my resolution:
Don’t fuck anything up again
Don’t fuck anything up again
Don’t fuck anything up again