I spent the majority of my day yesterday moving my best friend & bandmate Gina and her boyfriend Wes into their first house.
We were a small team of movers – just five, plus one in the truck – yet the move went as smoothly as it could possibly go… with the exception of one instance of Gina and I collapsing into giggles while trying to carry her futon around a bend in the stairs, and the fact that the laws of physics bar them from sleeping on a queen-sized box spring anywhere other than their living room.
Gina and I have now known each other for over half of our lives – through middle school, high school, college, post-college, and now whatever this is. It was amazing thing to be a part of her big move yesterday, just it continues to be amazing to be able to see so far into the past of someone, someone with whom silliness comes so easily, and with whom I am the epitome of comfortable, willing to speak my mind even when I know we disagree.
Crushing Krisis has now been alive seven years – since August 26th, 2000. That’s more than half as long as I’ve known Gina, and nearly as long as I’ve known the rest of my best friends.
To the best that I can discern, Crushing Krisis is the longest continuously running blog in Philadelphia, and has been since 2003. It’s an amazing thing to contemplate, especially considering that Philly was recently measured to be the second most bloggingest city in the United States. It also means that CK is increasingly one of the most established blogs on the face of the internet.
Just as significantly, since it’s inception Crushing Krisis has been a home to my original music, featuring the original (and, correspondingly, longest-running) singer-songwriter podcast, Trio.
Maybe more significantly than either of those distinguished roles, Crushing Krisis is a part of me – a persistent virtual reflection that helps me to see myself as I am, as I once was, and how I wish I would be.
This page is a lot of things, and a lot of me, and for each year that passes it gets a little more important, because I am getting older and starting to forget feelings from certain moments or stories from specific parties.
I long ago accepted that birthdays and new years days are not inherently transformative experiences – you don’t come out on the other side a new person more than you would emerge reborn from any other day of the year. Yet, they can mark your graduation into being a changed person.
As I wrote last year’s birthday post I felt as if I had finally reached a stable place in life, and if Year 6 of Crushing Krisis was about finding stability, then this past year has been converting stability into happiness.
Some of that conversion was literal. I went from writing and editing letters to managing publications and ad campaigns. I went from being a house-bound recluse of a songwriter to a semi-regular at area bars. and open mics. I transferred Crushing Krisis from Blogger to WordPress on November 12, in the midst of participating in the amazing National Blog Posting Month. I vowed to have a consumerless Christmas (and succeeded). And, Gina and I finally became the band we’ve always teased at being.
And now I am actually, unequivocally, at an equilibrium of happiness – which, if you read through as many hundreds of old posts as I have in the past few weeks, you will realize is a state I wasn’t sure I would reach. Not so soon, at least, and maybe never.
Year 7 of Crushing Krisis includes a slew of favorite posts. I cursed at the television. I had a headache so profound that I gave it a name. I reinvented myself for NaBloPoMo. I recounted my first heartbreak. During a single Trio I redefined one of my favorite songs, and debuted one that had been incubating for half a decade.
I almost burned down the house baking cookies in the microwave. I finally told the story of my life-altering nap at Bonnaroo. I recorded a perfect version of one of my favorite songs. I took my first trip to a casino. Septa carried out an act of terrorism against my favorite garment. And, I finally celebrated the 4th of July the way I’ve always meant to.
But, for every favorite post there’s another that’s just as essential. I offered the most succinct description of myself ever made. I retold the story of the Queen of Darkness, complete with soundtrack. I mercilessly deceived a toddler to get him to eat his vegetables. I contemplated six years of knowing (and reading) Rabi. I listened to the Beatles entire catalog while racing through my last letter of NaBloPoMo reading.
I examined my role as a narrator in my own songs, comparing it to that of an inanimate object. Elise and I found a new favorite restaurant, where we’ve since become regulars. I documented my seemingly endless struggle with organizing my home office. I started documenting my visual life. I reflected on how far my 2004 resolutions have got me.
I recorded my favorite Garbage song, as well as one of Madonna’s most obscure. I reflected on how feminism sometimes makes me cry. I drank a lot of limoncello. I helped present the fifth annual Lyndzapalooza with hardly a hitch. I recorded my catchiest song, ever. I nearly lost my mind in the middle of Broad Street.
After recapping my year in words or links I usually spend the penultimate paragraphs of these August 26th posts talking about what Crushing Krisis is to me and what I hope to make it in the future, but I don’t know if this iteration warrants the introspection.
After seven years of blogging Crushing Krisis is me or, more accurately, an integral, inextricable part of me that I hope will exist as long as I do and beyond. Ultimately it doesn’t matter how many posts I make in a year (105), or how many unique songs I feature (37), or how many times I tell you how I really feel (?). This is just what it is, and I wouldn’t want it to be anything else.
While the penultimate paragraph changes, the final sentiment never really does: thank you. Thank you, no matter how many posts you have read, or how many songs you have listened to.
Thank you, because each of our identities are half about our self-perception and half about others’ perception of us, and if this is a form of me it would only be half-alive without a you to complete it.
Thank you. And, happy birthday to this.