Pop psychologist

Last night I spent $12.88 online.  It was a great deal:  I got a face lift, an energy boost, an hour of therapy, and a reasonably cheap hit of retail therapy.  Plus, I’m getting a little bit of a workout even now– bobbing my head and doing mini-oblique crunches.  Does that give away the identity of my new therapist?

Did you guess?  It’s iTunes.  Think about it– you can lay on the proverbial couch (or geez, a real one if you’re on a laptop!) and delve through hidden memories of your past.  You can relive both the good and the bad times– euphoria and dejection as played out in the soundtrack of your life!  You can wonder, “Why? Why did I listen to Kajagoogoo?  Or Lisa Lisa & the Cult Jam?”  I guarantee, no matter how old you are, you can remember things you had long forgotten about yourself in just one little hour browsing the iTunes store.  Whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing is another issue– and I guess it’s up to you, because your explorations can go whichever direction you want to take them.  Just stay away from Barry Manilow if you can (Lola and Mandy are best left in the past)!

Don’t scoff at me!  I’m really on to something here.  I’ll even embarrass myself by disclosing details, just to prove my point.  Last night I sought out some songs we used to play before high school games:  The Pointer Sisters’ “Neutron Dance” and Prince’s “Delirious.” Besides bringing back memories of dancing in the locker room with friends and smacking volleyballs in the hitting line during warmups, it made me want to recapture some of my athletic youth.  So I’ve redoubled my resolve to play tennis more this summer.  (Sue, if you’re out there, I sure wish it could be v-ball with you and your bunch!)

Okay, next up, songs I ceded after a breakup– you know, like how after a divorce supposedly the couple’s friends kind of go one way or the other?  Well, he got the music!  Twenty-some years later, I finally have “Pinball Wizard” again!  And “Lay Down Sally” and “Never Been to Spain.”  It’s like reclaiming a little part of myself I had abandoned.  Now if that’s not textbook therapy, what is??  In a similar vein, I can try to salvage some small memento from my total disillusionment with the sorority thing.  I screwed up my courage and bought one of those songs that we used to all sway to in a big circle on the dance floor, arms around each other, eyes moist with the bonds of ‘sisterhood’ and eternal loyalty or something.  Yeah.  I might need a few more sessions to resolve that.  Club Nouveau’s “Lean on Me” is not as good as I remember.

Ooooh.  I’ll let that stand, even at risk of undermining my point about iTunes therapy.  Some issues go deep and you might have to work a while to uncover the songs you’ve been suppressing…  But hey, as far as I’m concerned it’s better than palmistry or handwriting analysis.  And as for psychics, I’d be afraid the “invisi-vibe” they pick up wasn’t really mine.  I mean, what if it belonged to the dog, who’s desperate to go outside?  Or to one of the kids in my house?  Next thing I knew, I’d be spending all this time in the park, looking for my ‘inner child’ or a place to do my business or something.

Speaking of that– dogs, I mean!– one new musical addition to my library last night is called “The Puppy Song” by Harry Nilsson.  Check it out if you do iTunes– it’s a very happy song.  Also appropriate in our household just now, as  the kids are in a full court press to get a dog this summer.  So iTunes Pop Therapy doesn’t just help you sort out where you’ve been, you see.  It helps you explore where you are now and where you’re going.  Pay attention to what you’re listening to!

I’m going to write a book about this– a self-help music therapy pop psych book!  Why let a small matter like lack of credentials get in the way when we’re talking Pop psychology???  What’s the song for that– “Pop goes the weasel?”  Anyone want to contribute?  I’ll give you a chapter credit– jump in!

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