Hey! It’s a special month on the Jewish calendar and that month is called Adar. It’s awesome and special because you’re commanded to be happy the whole month. Yes, indeed, doomed to happiness for four plus weeks. The happiness thing is because Adar is the month with Purim, one of those holidays where the Jews were saved from certain death (well, almost certain, obviously) and that’s a giant excuse for a party. Tomorrow night begins Purim, the holiday where you give gifts of baked goods to your friends and it’s a mitzvah to get bombed off your ass. That might not be the exact language the Talmud uses, but that’s really the rule.
My Mom was a Jewish educator, as I’ve stated many times here, and she liked to wear a giant button on her coat at this time of year that embarrassed me beyond the limits of teenage humiliation. It said, “Be happy! It’s Adar!” in Hebrew and English. Oh Mom! When I was in college, my grandma died during that month and after that, it was terribly hard for my Mom to be happy then but she wore the big green button anyway. Sometimes commandments are hard. After she died, we found that my Mom had like ten of these buttons. Ha! I kept one but, you know, I don’t actually walk down the street with the thing on my coat.
To veer off slightly, there’s this guy who has a Facebook group of which I’m a member where he does this “blast from the 80′s Alternative scene” every day. I found it because the guy who lived across the hall from me in college freshman year joined and I saw it in my feed. I asked him where he’d found this group and he said, “oh, I was remembering how great Depeche Mode were and thought it would be cool to hear some old songs.” Oh yes, cool, I said, they sure were great. I neglected to tell him that I’ve been listening to them every day since we lived there on the fourth floor. Some of us never move on!
Anyway, the song of the day a few days ago was by a group that I really, truly had not thought of in maybe fifteen years. And I have the CD! Like the description by the uploader on YouTube video, I actually wore out the cassette, I played it so much. Thus the CD. I think this actually may have been my favorite album of 1990. Now it’s kind of dated, unlike my favorite album of 1989, Nine Inch Nails’ Pretty Hate Machine, which still sounds glorious and modern to this day. And yes, I know Violator came out in 1989. Stiff competition.
But the real reason I chose a song from this album today is that it’s called Happiness. And it really does lift your spirits, as it’s dancey and upbeat. The song chosen by the Facebook guy was the big single from the album, Hello, which is a kind of list of people, only catchy. You can see the video for that here if you’d like to jog your memory. But my favorite song on the album was this one. It was calm, mellow, and jazzy but yet upbeat and uplifting. I just put it on my iPod this week. That should help me be happy! It’s Adar!
The Beloved – The Sun Rising