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01/09/2006 - 3:55 p.m.

MAMMA MIA

Like many other people, I have contemplated my life as a movie. My life would make a fairly boring movie, I expect, but still I have had my dramas. I have considered who should play FogieKnight, who should play me, and other casting issues. (The kids should play themselves, of course.) I have written scenes in my head. I have walked down the red carpet in my head. But what I have never done is consider the movie soundtrack. Perhaps I should have. While I was out failing to consider the soundtrack, the soundtrack found me. And, Mamma Mia, it's not pretty.

If I were to think about the soundtrack, I might think of classical piano pieces. Although I love Bach, I admit that my temperament is more Beethoven than the cool, mathematical Bach. I might think of some of the folksongs I sang in coffeehouses---minus the bawdy ballads I used to sing, accompanied by autoharp—although a few of those might give my generally PG life a misleading R rating. I could not use the tunes I love because what I love in music tends to be transient. I am unfaithful in music in a way I am unfaithful in little else.

I might have thought about it another way. I might have thought of using the songs that really have been the soundtrack of my life. The scene where I learn I'm moving from Michigan to New Jersey would be accompanied by the Beatles' "Hey, Jude." My sadness at leaving the junior high where I did not fit in for another junior high where I likely would not fit in (and did not fit in much) was real even if it had a "devil you know is better than the devil you don't" quality. "Hey, Jude" works for that scene and makes sense for it played over and over in the cafeteria before we moved. My on-again-off-again courtship with FogieKnight works perfectly with Meatloaf's "I want you, I need you, but there ain't no way I'm ever going to love you but don't feel sad because two out of three ain't bad…" "Tum Bailalaika" was an odd choice for coming down the aisle but it would work for the wedding scene. (Hey, it worked for the original, so why not?)

But I did not get to chose my soundtrack. It chose me—and I never saw it coming. I hear the soundtrack in the morning. I hear the soundtrack in the evening. It runs around my head in the daytime. And Day chose it.

Day has an ipod but she also has speakers she hooks it up too. She dislikes the earbuds and so, when studying, she hooks it up to old computer speakers in her room. When showering or combing her hair or brushing her teeth, she hooks it up to some old speakers that went with a tape recorder that once was Kat's. The music is not ridiculously loud. It's not particularly loud at all. But it's there, underscoring our morning and underscoring our night.

And what does this soundtrack consist of? What music does she play? Well, it's not any current group. The soundtrack of my life is ABBA.

After all, I live with the dancing queen. Mamma mia, what else could I expect?

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