The 125 Best Songs of the '00s

On #21, The Mountain Goats' This Year. On my Tumblr:

It’s so inspiring to watch someone else be honest. That’s why AA works, it’s why ‘creative nonfiction’ memoirs are so popular, it’s why everyone likes people who are self-effacing. It takes away the enormous amount of pressure that we all feel to play it cool, to pretend like everything is okay. It’s like when you ask someone how they’re doing and they look at you and say “not so great.” I’m not saying that would make you feel good, but it comes as a wave of relief in a way, just because they are telling the truth.

So that’s what John Darnielle does, and he does it articulately and beautifully and with fear but also hope stitched to his sleeve. I can’t listen to this song without wanting to stand up and celebrate. Everyone is broken, but how we make it through day after day — year after year — anyway.

Your New Favorite Old Songs

For The Hairpin:

Jacqueline was a teenage ye-ye girl which was the 1960s French version of “twee as hell.” In this song, she wakes up in the morning (guess what time?) and starts spinning records by The Who and Elvis and looking for her toothbrush. The lyrics are a meandering inner dialogue, complete with pauses and sighs to drive home to point that Jacqueline is just singing every single thing that goes through her head on this uneventful school day morning. “It’s, uh, Monday, isn’t it? Oh, I have an English exam today. Mm, I wish I had Paul McCartney to — [long pause] — help me.”