The River's Badge

Thursday, January 18, 2018

Your Future Has Been Decided

Don't you love those stories about how someone abandoned their staid old life and embarked on an entirely new career at age fifty?

Sorry, I'm not buying it.

I'm a believer that what we will become has been decided for us by age five. We can fight against it, but we can't change the essence of ourselves. There may be detours along the way, but most of us come back to our real nature eventually.

When I was five, my career goal was to be "in charge". Rather a nebulous ambition, I admit, but there is a logical rationale behind it. I was a shy kid (which, by the way, is not a fun way to be); timid; scared of making a wrong move and drawing others' eyes to me. A darkened corner was my preferred resting place. Shy kids aren't wobbly toothpicks -- they do have a strong spirit, but it stays hidden. Shy kids are probably more resilient than most people. They depend on themselves -- for comfort, for validation. They know their talents, but take them for granted. I was a kid who drew pictures and made up stories and songs. These weren't pursuits I needed to "learn"; they were just what I did.

Alone in the clammy basement of our farmhouse, the games I played were those of a teacher instructing her class (of empty chairs I'd set up in front of my card table "desk"), or of a priest saying mass -- again in front of my card table altar. Mass was said in Latin at that time, so I just made up words as I held my chalice high -- "Domini...something..."

The thread that tied these games together was that I was at the front of the room and I was in charge.

Shy kids want to be in charge; be noticed; be the center of attention -- but only if they are in control.

I suppose I was, too, a bit of a ham. I craved attention, but only at my behest. You can look at me when I tell you it's okay to look at me.

Today, all these years later, I am a teacher, so to speak. I like parts of my job -- those that put me in front of the room. I can walk among my students and lecture extemporaneously. In real life, I'm generally tongue-tied, my words sputtering forth in fits and starts; but in front of a group, I'm transformed. There is no explanation for it, and I don't spend any minutes pondering it. It is what it is.

It's me. The essence of me.

I bided my time for a lot of years, functioning as a clerk-typist or another button-pusher -- a cashier -- working quietly; unobtrusively, before the opportunity presented itself, or perhaps before I made my own opportunity. It's difficult to say after all this time if the possibility found me or if I found the possibility. However, once I became "in charge", I was at home. And that's when I shined. All that practice at age five paid off, finally.

I could tell you about my kids and how what they were at age five turned out to be what they became, but trust me on this -- I was there. I saw it, and I know it.

I'm not saying that our life experiences after age five don't shape us. Everything shapes us. But those experiences are the extra cheese atop our pizza. They enhance, but they don't create.

Musically, at age five, I was adrift. There were good records released, but music confused me. It was schizophrenic. Some of it was as dull as the test pattern on our big console TV; some of it my big brother informed me was good music. The only song I made up my own mind about; the only one I definitively knew was good, was this:

The number one hit of 1960 is one that Don Draper would really like; one that Adrian Cronauer made fun of:

My most lingering memory of 1960 is that Connie Francis was the girl singer. One could win a free 45 RPM single from the local radio station by being the first caller to identify who sang this song:

As girl singers went, I preferred this: 

Yep, taste is not acquired, but born.

In 1960 it was the battle of the girl singers -- Connie Francis versus Brenda Lee. We know who ultimately came out on top, don't we?

This song sucked, but that didn't stop the DJ's from playing it over and over. We were bereft of decent music in the midpoint of the twentieth century . Even at my tender age, I knew this song was just wrong:

My brother informed me this was good music. He was not wrong:

My older sisters were such slaves to pop fads. I'm so glad that never, ever, happened to me. I mean, I never once did The Jerk or The Watusi. Never.

My dad liked this song. I was never an Elvis fan (sorry; still am not), but if my dad liked something, that carried even more weight than my brother's opinion:

I missed this song in 1960 and only caught up with it later. At least the five-year-old me doesn't remember it. My loss. This guy would see me clear through the eighties. And...whoa...

This musical interlude not withstanding, remember the five-year-old you. The five-year-old you is who you really are.

Don't try to deny it.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

1975 And Me And Country

1975 was a bridge year for me. I'd experienced life in the real working world and found I didn't care for it. I was playing at being married but didn't completely grasp the concept. Shoot, I was twenty. Nobody should ever -- ever -- get married at age nineteen. In the seventies, though, it was expected. To be honest, I wasn't even quite nineteen when I got married. I became pregnant in early 1976, so nineteen seventy-five was the last time I lived life in a semi-independent state. I'd gone back to working for Mom and Dad, not so much because I'd failed in the outside world, but because I was more comfortable working alone -- without the drama. Yes, I was cleaning motel rooms, but I had my portable radio that I carried with me from unit to unit, and that was all I needed. Alice had moved on. She worked for the Bank of North Dakota, and frankly, things were never the same with her once I changed my life status by getting hitched. In my defense, at least I found a husband who wasn't two decades older than me, and my marriage lasted far longer than her ill-fated coupling.

Musically, I was alone. It's funny how one gloms onto music based on what others like or buy. Nineteen seventy-five was the first time since 1964 I actually had to rely on myself to choose what music to like or not like.

Not that the music was necessarily good, but one plucks the best from the paltry offerings bestowed upon helpless listeners by the local DJ. It's a misnomer that pop culture wasn't as pivotal in the seventies as it is now. In fact, it was probably more crucial, because there was so much less access to it. One would stay up way past one's bedtime (if they had to get up at six a.m. to get to work) just to see a particular artist on The Tonight Show, because this might be our one and only chance. Record it? On what -- my reel-to-reel? We endured a lot of sickly-sweet variety shows, sat through Gallagher's "comedy" act, simply to see ABBA lip-sync one song. I suffered through Hee Haw for the musical vignettes. Choice? There was no "choice", unless one "chose" to get up off the sofa and flip the dial on the TV to CBS or ABC.

Radio was the same. We had a country station. ONE country station. You took what you got, heard the same pre-recorded local news stories every hour on the hour. Found out that it was "partly cloudy" without even venturing outside whichever room we were currently sanitizing the toilet of, with our scrub brush and a can of Comet.

It's interesting to learn which singles hit the top of the charts in '75 -- and which ones didn't. Funny, the ones I remember best are the ones that didn't. The ones that did, I don't care if I ever hear, ever again.

Like this one:

I remember that Mom and Dad were enamored with this song and I don't know why. Three-chord songs can be great -- shoot, Merle Haggard even recorded a two-chord song that was extraordinary. But a three-chord song needs a bit of oomph -- something to break up the monotony. Freddy Fender's single didn't have that, unless one counts the tink-tinkling of a tiny sad guitar.

This next song would be good if it hadn't been sung by Conway Twitty. Readers of this blog know that I just never got on board with Conway. I can't put my finger on why exactly. People are people; some like chocolate; some detest it. Again, Mom (especially) loved Conway Twitty. Ish. But that was Mom.

I never gave the song a second thought until I watched George Strait perform it in concert. Then I thought, wow, this is a good song! (It's all about the singer, folks.)

Dolly Parton was recording odd things that had queer melodies. I guess it was a phase. "Jolene" was bad enough, but "Bargain Store" was worse. I won't subject you to any of these, but since she charted at number one with the thrift shop ditty, I felt an obligation to mention it. I essentially gave up on Dolly once she parted ways with Porter.

Just like now, even at age twenty I gravitated toward "country" songs. You know, there's country and then there's "country". There's a difference. True lovers of country music know.

I loved Gary Stewart the first time I heard him (and saw him). I was always drawn to artists who were a bit different; intriguing. Those who I wondered, "what's up with this guy?" Gary Stewart didn't have a classic country voice. It was a bit high for the rugged country stalwarts of the time. A tenor, I guess. Of course, I love Faron Young, who was also a tenor, so perhaps my ear is attuned that way. I also appreciated that he played piano. Gary had a sad life, and it's kind of a punch in the gut to know how it all ended. I saw Gary Stewart in concert once, from my perch in the nosebleed seats of the Civic Center. I'm really glad I did.

I don't know why he's not playing piano here, the way I remember him, but here is "She's Acting Single":

I'm not going to wait until the end of this post to feature the song that defines nineteen seventy-five for me. Writers (good writers) would say, save the best for last, but the song has been on my mind. There was this new guy, someone whose name I'd never before heard, that apparently my local DJ really liked, because he played this single a lot. No, it wasn't classic country. Yes, it was good -- captivating. I remember wheeling my maid's cart to the next room down the row and hearing the intro to this song squawk out of my radio; then hurrying into the room with my portable and flipping up the volume:

To me, Gene Watson is like Mark Chesnutt -- sorely underestimated. Except to those of us who know, really know country. If you want your guts ripped out, listen to "Farewell Party". I can't believe that "Love In The Hot Afternoon" only reached number three on the charts. I could have sworn, and that long-ago DJ could attest, that it was a number one -- with a four-decade bullet.

In 1975 I detested John Denver. John Denver was everything that country music wasn't. And to top it off, the stupid CMA rewarded him with the coveted Entertainer of the Year statuette. For what? Yelling, "Far out!"? I mean, come on. I don't know what exactly John Denver was -- my husband's friend could perhaps illuminate, because he loves the guy. My friend Alice also told me, in our sole telephone conversation in '75, about how she was "into" John Denver, and my brain registered, "okay?"

My hatred has since softened, as all hatred naturally does as the years tick by. Guys (and gals) I once detested, I've learned, actually have something to offer. One needs to knock that chip off their shoulder and truly listen. And I will admit (now) that this song had something:

Okay, hello? I just realized that Roger Miller is playing fiddle here, and Glen Campbell is strumming the banjo. What was this? Some kind of country super band?

Another artist I think I saw once live really dominated the early nineteen seventies. I'd first heard Ronnie Milsap in 1974, with his Cap'n Crunch song, and he subsequently had hit after hit after hit. 

This is one of his best:

The first time I remember hearing BJ Thomas was around 1968, with "Eyes Of A New York Woman". His was a voice I tucked inside my pocket and pulled out when I wanted to hear a good, country-pop, but mostly (come on) country singer. 

This song was a number one in 1975, and you know it's catchy. Give it up! I even bought a Chipmunks album for my toddler son sometime around 1980 that featured this song. And divining music critic that he was at age two, he gave it two chubby thumbs up:

So, you can have your Outlaws and In-Laws and Jessie's. Oh, and don't forget your Tompall's. 

That's not what 1975 was for me. And since I was there, I have a say in the matter.

Oh, that picture at the top? Yea, I found this girl by accident. Maybe a snippet of a song played on my local station, and maybe I thought, hmmm, she sounds good! This gal was an album act. One could not experience Emmylou Harris without listening to a full album. "Elite Hotel" was the first of many Emmylou albums I would buy. 

The thing about Emmylou is, she didn't forget. She brought back the old, reveled in the new, but cherished what came before. I like that. Everything isn't new. Sometimes it's old and the old is a treasure. Maybe you just forgot to listen the first time.

Friday, January 12, 2018

The Downfall of TV's "Nashville"

I viewed the very first episode of Nashville skeptically. I was curious what alternate country music universe the writers would create. I thought the Juliette Barnes character was created to depict a naughty Taylor Swift. Deacon Claybourne was a renowned songwriter -- believable -- but singer/songwriter? Not so much. I know that Charles Esten now regularly appears on the Grand Ole Opry, but I think that's just a pity booking, because he's frankly not a great singer. Funny how an actor who was previously best known for being a sketch player on Whose Line Is It Anyway is suddenly a "famous" country singer. The most preposterous casting was Connie Britton as a Reba-ish country music superstar. Because Connie Britton can't sing, hard as she tried.

However, like all soap operas, Nashville sucked me in. I can't exactly pinpoint why. The show certainly created, then killed off, many characters over the years. It completely misused the late Powers Boothe, who was an extraordinary actor. There were multiple mothers who died, a dad who went to prison, and his little brat daughter who's now decided that Deacon is her "dad". I guess real dad can go to hell. I understand that actors sign short-term contracts and are eventually gone, but don't insult the viewers' intelligence.

Then there is the most annoying character ever created, Scarlett O'Connor. Clare Bowen needs a better voice coach to help her simulate an Alabama accent. I've often had to rewind my DVR recording to try to figure out what Scarlett said, in case it was an important plot point. In the actress's defense, though, she was given a thankless part to play -- a simpering, self-pitying, self-indulgent scold.

I guess when it comes down to it, I stayed because of Juliette and Avery. Expanding Jonathan Jackson's role was a deft move. Man, some of the scenes in which he cried, heartbroken, broke my heart.

The other thing that drew me in was the music. When T Bone Burnett was the musical director, there were some good songs -- not really country -- kind of a T Bone kind of country. When he left the series, he had this to say:

"Some people were making a drama about real musicians' lives, and some were making a soap opera, so there was that confusion,” he told The Hollywood Reporter. “It was a knock-down, bloody, drag-out fight, every episode.”

Reportedly, when Nashville was canceled by ABC and subsequently picked up by CMT, the mandate was to make more room for music. Could have fooled me. The show barely features one verse/chorus of a song now, and frankly, that's a good thing. I fast-forward through the "musical" numbers, because the songs are sucky.

The thing about soap operas is, you hang on and hang on, because you don't want to miss what might happen. I watched Days Of Our Lives and The Young And The Restless for years; and frankly, the story never ends. At some point, however, real life invades and one has to finally give up. I'm guessing Bo and Hope are no longer tooling along on his motorcycle (unless they're part of the local AARP club). Jack Abbott (the real Jack Abbott -- Terry Lester) has sadly passed away.

Nashville will, however, end. So I'm going to bear it out -- this last season, or half-season. The problem with the show is, there are no longer any stakes.

When ABC decided to cancel the show, it created an ending that was satisfying. Then enough people bitched, and CMT picked up the show. So the happy ending was flung aside. Then Rana died. As bad and unconvincing a singer as Connie Britton was, she's a good actress. She did essentially carry the show. CMT thus decided that Rana's eldest daughter would be the new ingenue, and sorry, but Lennon Stella can't pull it off. I understand that the Stella Sisters are good -- as a duo -- but Maisy's character is too busy stabbing her real dad in the back and adopting street urchins, so she's apparently no longer allowed to sing. And Lennon can't carry it off as a solo.

I've only seen the first episode of the sixth season so far. I watch Nashville on Hulu, because I refuse to be a slave to network TV and its interruptions to try to sell me things I don't want, so there is a delay before the next episode is available. All I know right now is, Juliette is falling prey to a guy who is either a stalker Doctor Phil or a Scientology-like self-help cult leader. It could go either way.

And I don't actually care, but I'm going to see it through to the end.

The downfall of Nashville was that it forgot the music.

Surprisingly (or not?) is that Hayden Panetierre is the best country singer the show ever found.


 Connie and Charles could do a good performance, given a good song:

This was probably the song that roped me in:

"Nashville" was supposed to be about country music.

Too bad they forgot.


Saturday, December 30, 2017

2017 - A Year

If one stops learning, they stop living. I think I learned some things in 2017 -- they may not be profound things, but they are things.

It's difficult to sum up a year, three hundred and sixty-five days, because I frankly would have to think hard to remember what I did yesterday. Time runs together like a gushing stream.

Nevertheless, in no particular order, things I learned:

Don't trust preconceived notions.

Two notable passings touched me this year more than I ever thought they would.

When I was thirteen and beginning to formulate my country music opinions, burying myself in Waylon Jennings and Merle Haggard vinyl, I hated (hated!) Glen Campbell. Glen Campbell wasn't rock 'n roll and he sure wasn't country. I didn't know what he was exactly -- kind of Frank Sinatra Lite. Everything any self-respecting music lover hated. Synthesizers that sounded like drunken birds. Icky, simpering melodies (thanks, Jimmy Webb). And that's all the stupid FM disc jockey ever played -- that and an early dysmorphic Willie Nelson. The radio station apparently possessed only two LP's, and the radio spinner made the most of them. No wonder AM radio ruled.

I'm talking about stuff like this:

But a funny thing happened on my trip through the decades:  I learned to love Glen Campbell. Oh, it was gradual. I thought "Rhinestone Cowboy" ranked right up there with "Rose Garden" for its dullness and repetition. I did like "Southern Nights", however. It had a bit more verve than I'd come to expect from Glen. In his Tanya Tucker days, he added some nice touches to her recordings, and, silly as it seemed, I found that I craved that voice.

As happens when we get older and wiser, Glen settled into himself. Sadly, it was Alzheimer's that brought it about. When I learned that Glen had Alzheimer's, a lump caught in my throat. My dad had Alzheimer's, and it's so very sad...and lonely. But that knowledge drew me to Glen, after fifty-odd years of either hating him or ignoring him. 

I'm happy that in 2017 I re-found Glen Campbell. 

The seventies, for me, were kind of a lost decade, musically. I didn't know which way to turn. I was buying Larry Gatlin albums and meanwhile hearing the Bee Gees singing about staying alive. And The Captain and Tennille. Frankly, the seventies sucked in myriad ways.

In the mire, I completely missed Tom Petty.  I honestly had no idea who Tom Petty was until my little sister began raving about an album called, "Full Moon Fever". 

Let me tell you about Tom Petty -- he was AWESOME. 

I watched a documentary about him on Netflix, and I think I am in love.

What a decent, principled man he was. 

And I completely missed him!

No more. Maybe I'm a bit late, but I will forevermore celebrate everything Tom Petty. 

What was life like before Netflix?

I don't like commercials and I don't like, "stayed tuned for scenes from next week's episode". In the prehistoric days, we had to put up with both those things. In the twenty-first century, TV has evolved. And thankfully, because I would have completely missed some awesome TV if it wasn't for Netflix. 

What did I miss?

Number one, the best television show of all time:

Another show I missed:

Mad Men

And exclusive to Netflix:

Stranger Things:

The Crown:

Thanks to DVD, I found:

Downton Abbey
The Sopranos

So, yes, my life consists of TV, essentially.

I did learn a few other lessons in 2017, actually.

If you live long enough, the sadness subsides, and you remember the happy.

My mom and dad have been gone for a long while -- since 2001, to be exact. For a long time I couldn't think about them without feeling melancholy, wistful, regretful. If you are a reader of my blog, you know that throughout my life my relationship with my mother was fraught. If we'd met as strangers, we wouldn't have become friends...although that's possibly untrue. Maybe we would have accepted each other as friends do. As it was, we both expected more of each other than either of us was able to give. It wasn't until late in her life that I recognized the fine qualities she possessed -- hard-fought acceptance, forgiveness. In some ways we were too much alike, but those likenesses were overshadowed by irreconcilable, fundamental differences. I've never once dreamed about my mom, which is puzzling.

I last dreamed about my dad maybe seven years ago. We were in a hotel ballroom where some kind of happy gathering was about to commence. I stood among a group of strangers waiting for Dad to come in. He did, attired in his de rigueur short-sleeved white dress shirt, but as he passed me, he didn't stop. He didn't even acknowledge my presence as he glad-handed all his friends. I don't know what the dream meant. Maybe that I craved the attention he once lavished on me, as a child, before life became too crazy and he curled up in a woozy world all his own. I don't hold it against him. I don't hold anything against Mom or Dad...anymore.

I've dedicated my blog this year to remembrances of times past and how they intersect with music. It's helped me work through...whatever I apparently need to work through.

Never say never.

I had a tradition of creating a video at the end of every year, ever since 2006, for the Red River song, "Ring In The Old". I stopped a couple of years ago because I had lost interest and had moved on.

This year, I felt nostalgic and on the spur of the moment, decided to do it once again.


Happy 2018 to you.

This is the best I could do.

And that's a-okay with me.

Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Damn You, Microsoft

I do not understand why a company that has a good product suddenly decides to discontinue it. Windows Movie Maker was so intuitive. I created countless videos using that software. Then suddenly it was gone. I had a light bulb idea last night as I was falling asleep for a new video -- with a specific song as the backdrop. I'd forgotten that Windows 10 didn't include Movie Maker, and in searching, I found that Microsoft no longer supports it, and doesn't even offer it without support.

I subsequently downloaded and uninstalled various "alternatives" that were awful. I love how they all tout their "ease of use". Okay. No. The wondrous thing about Movie Maker was that it was drag and drop. How difficult is that to recreate? Apparently really difficult. I spent hours today adding photos and (sometimes) music, if the program would let me; only to find that the damn thing didn't work. As for effects? These programs claimed to have them. They didn't. The "fade" was imperceptible.

And either the audio track would start and stop -- hiccup -- or the app didn't hold the approximately eighty photos I had painstakingly added. (A three minute song requires a lot of pictures -- trust me. I've been down this road before.)

Clicking on a plethora of icons is a pain in the ass, hoping to find the one I need. And getting more and more pissed.

Trust me; I've done tons of videos for Red River. Granted, some of them weren't done well, but I learned. The creative process is difficult enough without having to deal with a dodgy program.

Tonight I found a YouTube video touting a way to get Movie Maker. And so I downloaded the program from a (hopefully) Microsoft site. We'll see. I've already wasted my entire day adding photos to sundry apps and then throwing up my hands and deleting the programs all together. And now the day is done.

I'll try again tomorrow.

In the meantime, just to demonstrate how easy Window Movie Maker was, here are a few of my favorite Red River videos:

Friday, December 22, 2017

Christmas Really Is For Kids

(Unfortunately, I never got the outfits.)

I wasn't a toy kid. One must understand, in the early sixties, there weren't a lot of fun toys. Boys had Tonka trucks -- and they were the ones with the sharp metal edges; not the molded plastic "safe" ones. One unfortunate stumble in the living room could result in a nasty head wound, which in modern times would mean a trip to the ER, but in the sixties Mom would slap on a Band-aid on and call it done. Boys (and moms) were tougher back then.

Even though I wasn't really into toys, I was into the Sears Christmas catalog. That awesome cornucopia of glossy full-color images showed up in our rural mailbox sometime in November, and I lay prostrate on the kitchen linoleum with a sharpened pencil for hours and days, circling every shiny thing I wished for, for Christmas. I really, really wanted the Barbie wedding dress. Really.

I never got it. Apparently it was "too expensive". But Mom said that about everything I wanted. How much could a Barbie wedding gown have cost in 1963? $3.99? What could Mom and Dad afford -- a Three Musketeers Bar?

It wasn't so much that I liked dolls -- I didn't. But I liked pretty dresses. I had a baby doll once. I think I cut her hair and then she looked hideous and I shunned her. She was one of those dolls that you fed water through a bottle and then she wet her pants. Apparently bed-wetting was a desirous trait in plastic dolls in the sixties. Shoot, I had a little sister for that.

(Me, pretending to like my doll.)

I also never got a Chatty Cathy doll, which is just as well. Look at her:

She is reminiscent of seventies horror films. I think this is where the inspiration for "Chucky" came from.

I liked coloring books and crayons. Again, I wanted the box of 64 crayons with a built-in sharpener, but the most I ever got was the 16. I made the best of it. There was a wondrous invention -- paint that, when you touched the brush to a coloring book drawing, it created sparkles. Sapphire, emerald, and ruby shimmers. That engrossed me for approximately one evening.

I also had paper dolls. Those were fun. I had the Patty Duke ones -- you know, Patty and her identical cousin, Cathy.

Come to think of it, I was a very economical gift recipient.

The weird thing about my mom, who I was convinced hated me, is that she always found stupendous gifts. One year I got a cardboard storefront with pasteboard shelves, fake bottles of milk and counterfeit boxes of mashed potato flakes and a cash register with pretend money. Suddenly at six I was a proprietor. I loved imagining.

(The store is on the left. The people are all nuts, except me, in the lower right.)

Of course, the very, very best Christmas gift she ever got me was my record player. And I had no inkling.

Maybe Mom wasn't so bad after all. 

The most fun I ever had with toys was when I shopped for my sons for Christmas. Those are the toys I remember best.

My oldest son liked toys, no doubt. He loved Transformers. But his gig was Lego sets. He would sit on the living room floor for hours building all manner of structures out of Legos. Sort of like my crayons, he was into creating things.

For my youngest, one year when he was around three, I got him this:

He probably doesn't think of this as his very best Christmas gift ever. I can attest that he liked it, though.

I wonder if life consists of collecting memories. When we don't even know that we are.

I try not to play this song at Christmastime. But I inevitably do. And then I tear up.

I think I subconsciously need to play it.

Merry Christmas.

May your memories make you cry, just a little.

Thursday, December 21, 2017

Misheard Lyrics

 Someone save my life tonight
Sugar bear

Okay, what is he saying, really? I have no idea, but as far as I'm concerned, it's all about the cereal.

Which is kind of weird, because who sings about Sugar Crisp? And why? 

I don't blame myself. I blame Elton. Elton John is known for creating a bit of mystique with his singing style, which is rather awesome, because that allows listeners to essentially "write" their own songs. Not that those songs make any sense. Try singing any Elton John song; I dare you. You are going to get it wrong. 

There it is -- sugar bear! C'mon, you heard it, too. If not, then you tell me what he's singing.

The funniest incorrect interpretation of lyrics I've heard came courtesy of Jimmy Fallon:

Kiss This Guy is the premiere site for insane interpretations of actual lyrics. It says more about the listener than the singer. The site is a window into a disturbed soul. 

And that's what's I like.