Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Thank you, Phil Collins.

Back when I started this blog, I was reminded of an episode of This American Life called "Break-Up" that I heard on NPR the year before. This episode was about a writer named Starlee Kine who, when going through a heart-wrenching break-up, found a way to deal with her loss by taking solace in the ultimate break-up cliche: The break-up song.

In an attempt to make herself feel better, she wallowed in the sappiest songs about heartbreak she could find and decided that the next logical step was to write one herself. To do that, she turned to the one person she felt could understand her particular brand of heartbreak and help put her feelings into song, that person was, who-else, but the great, Phil Collins.

'Sup?

When I started blogging, I went looking for the episode, found it online, and listened to it... twice. At the time, it got me thinking about what people turn to when they're going through something difficult and how they make sense of their world when it's upside down.

Starlee Kine turned to break-up songs and then decided to write one herself.

And I turned to blogs and then created this.

I've always felt like her story spoke so deeply to what this blog is about. There are so many ways to wallow, commiserate, and be sad when you're dealing with loss, but then eventually by way of all that loss you can create something out of it (like a song or even perhaps a blog), or understand something about yourself that you never saw before, or become something even better than you were before. It's really true, just ask Phil Collins.

Phil Collins actually became "Phil Collins" by beginning his solo career with a hugely popular, and deeply personal, album that he says was based in the break-up of his first marriage. Let that be a lesson to us all.

So I encourage you, Dear Readers, to listen to this episode because you aren't alone. You've got me and, of course, as always, the masterful king of the heartbreak song, Phil Collins.

Listen here: Episode 339: Break-Up and click "Stream Episode."


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