31 July 2006

charlotte gainsbourg - "the songs that we sing" (from the 5:55 lp, released september 4, import available for preorder here.)

this is the song that i've been singing most often, enough to make me want to post early monday a.m.

whenever "luminaries" get involved w/ projects for female stars, one fears two scenarios. one : the nancy sinatra, in which famous boys help out b/c they would really like to have known / had feelings of bi-curiosity inpsired by her father. two : the marianne faithfull, in which famous boys b/c really would like to have known / had feelings of intense desire inspired by her younger self.

so, enter charlotte gainsbourg & w/ her, just on this single, air, jarvis cocker, neil hannon & david campbell (who is probably as weary of the appositive "beck's father" as charlotte is of "serge's daughter.")

worries scatter like falling leaves w/ the first chime of the track. "the songs that we sing" is the first song i've heard this year that reminds me that fall is on its way, a not altogether unhappy prospect, w/ it so many things of promise for me ... & for you too, i hope. a september release for this album is perfectly apposite. unlike either nancy or marianne, charlotte's not quite ready for the september of her years & this single--the album, too, i hope--is sure proof. essential.

(i feel like the nme having closed a review that way!)

28 July 2006

the long blondes are fucking amazing.

no, no mp3 tonight. i've already posted three or four of them & i feel guilty. go check hype machine or some shit.

one, i've never been in the knitting factory when it's been that packed (or that young; truly, this must be the myspace effect). two, i've never felt the floor shake so.

ok, ok, ok, so kate, yes, but reenie the bassist, placed at the left hand of kate. it's not easy to deadpan when you've got a human cyclotron like kate next to you. but, my. she's the reference librarian of your dreams, that reenie, shooting you looks that you feel are meant for you alone, the kind of look that makes you feel as if you've been caught checking out her gams as she climbs a ladder to access the stacks.

but kate. ah, had i known how amazing she'd be it would have been worth dealing w/ the myspace kidets at the front of the stage--yeah, bummer, all ages--w/ their sunglasses at night indoors, their strings & strings of pearls, their energy drinks & ... their moshing. she's a bit like pj harvey, i guess--kate, that is, not The Kids--only she's more fashionable & fun; she was obviously enjoying herself, swigging a corona between songs--& like everyone else who wanted to drink, she had to wear a wristband, which she probably hated b/c it didn't go at all w/ her outfit, think b&w godard femme.

she's pretty but not the most beautiful girl in the room. i only say this b/c, when she's on, the room, & everyone in it, just seems to disappear, such are her powers. maybe she's known this awhile, kids can be cruel after all, & so she took to solitary pursuits, like books & music & films. she dances, too, like someone who danced in front of the mirror often, by herself, imagining a crowd. her time in solitude was well spent : she's emerged w/ an incredible self who's making up for lost time and having a v. public airing.

to see her in motion, gripping the mic & flailing about like dorothy malone in written on the wind, one wonders how she could be so unlucky w/ guys as to have enough material for all of these songs. perhaps b/c she's used to being on her own? or maybe it's b/c she can't be onstage all the time.

enough on that. i was affirmed in my belief that the music, pulp influence aside, is heavily steeped in the bassy, post-punk dance of the late 70s / early 80s, by bands like essential logic, delta 5 & girls at our best. indeed, the long blondes might be the only band working right now who have a tune--in "giddy stratospheres"--that would fit in perfectly on wanna buy a bridge. i suppose the only downside from my vantage point was having to sit through three opening acts & then not hearing "big infatuation." unless that was played as an encore; i didn't stick around--i realized the band really doesn't have that much more material. (although i suppose they could have played "autonomy boy," but they seemed to avoid their early early catalog. might tonight's setlist hint at what will be on the album?) anyway, setlist as best i remember it:

fulwood babylon (they started the show w/ a b-side!)
lust in the movies ( ... & followed it w/ another!)
once & never again ( ... & then one that only saw release on a cd that came w/ the nme!)
in the company of women ( ... & then a new one!)
weekend without makeup ( ... & at last, the new single.)
swallow tattoo
appropriation (by any other name)
you could have both
giddy stratospheres
separated by motorways

26 July 2006

the puppini sisters - "panic" (from the betcha bottom dollar lp, released july 31, import available for preorder here.)

your grandmother would love it. but what would morrissey say?

well, he wouldn't like it, first, b/c, well, it's not morrissey singing, is it? second, he'd probably make some ill-considered remark about its edges being smoothed--OR TOO PARALLEL (sorry, on a morrissey kick lately)--&, you know, it no longer being subversive.

he'd be right, to a degree. the vocal arrangements are really smooth & there's not much thought given to the instrumental backing. (it's not the best song on the record--that may be their version of "sway," by dino, not the stones--but it's their "statement.") that is, you could slip this in between your mum's rod stewart songbooks & michael bublé albums & she'd be none the wiser. put this on top 40, though, & then give a listen.

like the pipettes, the hot puppies, lucky soul, &c., the puppini sisters bring back the classic girl-group sound ... only here, by "classic" i mean "traditional" & by "girl" i mean "dame." this is straight-up andrews sisters, a beat i don't think anyone has worked since bette midler doing "boogie woogie bugle boy." let's call the original "panic" what it is : "metal guru" w/ "play-my-record" griping & kiddie choir (which, as evidenced by ringleader, morrissey still thinks is really subversive, some twenty years on). surely, in the mid-80s, there were far more bands, probably in manchester alone, who sounded like t. rex than there are traditional harmony groups today.

the song's central claim, too, rings far more true for the puppini girls than it did for morrissey/marr/&c. : "because the music that they constantly play / it says nothing to me about my life." again, surely angsty pasty boys had many more bands shedding vicarious tears for them than neat girls, neither quite pop nor indie, do today. but if the aforementioned bands end up getting their records played--&, yes, actually write songs about their own lives--well, bless the hanged dj, indeed.
oh, what the hell, might as well post that other track mentioned earlier.

pavement - "box elder" (from the westing (by musket & sextant) lp, available for purchase here.)

next monday, it'll be a year on from the day i thought i'd left new jersey forever.

two songs ran through my head, either transmitted through headphones or transmitted by synapses. one was "regret" by new order; the other was "box elder." i fixed on one lyric, "i had to get the fuck out of this town." alone in my car, singing along, i would try different inflections, to make "fuck" sound as definitive & as permanent as possible.

the move was neither definitive nor permanent. a year later, i've never felt more provincial & happy to be so. i thought that the problem was w/ this state & not w/ me. i thought that a change of scene would do me good, that i could lose my giant on one of the hudson crossings. the fault, dear reader, was in myself. you know, classic moody jersey boy, stuck always between philly & nyc & everyone knows this is nowhere & anywhere is better than nowhere. "born to run" & all that--but run to where, exactly? & where did bruce end up, anyway? back where he started. me, too.

a distant voice, who has gathered near once more, said she was proud that i made a choice, hoping that wouldn't sound too patronizing. she's right. last year, i was caught up in a motion that subsumed my own, pushed along on a wave of flattery & praise. this year, i made a choice--i've made a number of them, actually. small things--cooking more, cutting my own hair, &c.--that led to bigger things : dropping a bad habit, starting a new job. i'm kinda scared shitless. but i've become too complacent & so i've resolved to do more things that scare the shit out of me.

so "box elder" still appeals. but i've gotten past the f word--have gotten past a lot of things, recently. i've moved on down the lyric sheet and elsewhere. for me, it's about going places & not necessarily about destinations. i don't want my feet to get rooted to the ground, though, & so every morning, i make sure to ask myself, where to next?

25 July 2006

morrissey - "hold on to your friends" (from the vauxhall & i lp, available for purchase here.)

(trainspotters : see how many "hidden" morrissey references you can find! send your answers to the usual address! winner gets one (1) used walkman, melted.)

a friend of mine is the biggest morrissey fan i know. i sang her a line from this song the other day; she told me she didn't know it. the song is for her, then. & so is the rest of it.

if i were a morrissey album, i'd undoubtedly be vauxhall & i. i could assuredly write about my relations w/ a certain person i know in my life using nothing but lyrics from this album.
could you pass by? will you pass by? ... oh.

ah, but bunny, i loved you.

i am hated for loving for loving, anonymous call, a poison pen, a brick in the small of the back again. ... and i am hated for loving, i am haunted for wanting.
... & then there's "the more you ignore me, the closer i get"--but, no, back to that later. for now, "hold on to your friends."
a bond of trust has been abused, something of value may be lost ...
my most morrissey-like trait is not the wearing of gladioli in pocket, but the wearing of heart on sleeve. this comes, as all these things do, from watching my parents as a child, seeing how freely they expressed their love for one another. the other night, thirty-six years into their marriage, i saw them--mother on her couch, father in his armchair--holding hands, w/ a lack of self-consciousness, watching a lifetime movie.

this, i sometimes have to force myself to recall, is not everyone's experience. it is not the experience of my mother's daughter from her first marriage, now going through a divorce. it is not the experience of my father's daughters from his first marriage, neither of whom have married.

& so i'm always v. open w/ people about how i feel, at times too open, stumbling drunk down maudlin street. but i never thought it'd be held against me : i'd never run into a personality before who recoils from fondness & appreciation.
but now you only call me when you're feeling depressed, when you feel happy i'm so far from your mind, my patience is stretched, my loyalty vexed ...
but now i have & it's a brick wall that i keep slamming myself into, repeatedly. 'twasn't always this way, no. only a month ago, we got on royally--but she seemed far more unhappy then and i was, for a short while, her only true friend.

ah, but the vicissitudes of friendship! for her, things are at least back to the status quo, though i hope they're over & beyond that, and i feel like i've been put back on the shelf. do i remind her now of those chaotic times? did she reveal too much of herself to me? am i too much of a friend or not enough of one? i have to ask these questions b/c, like joni mitchell sings,

"i don't know where i stand" (from the clouds lp, available for purchase here.)

(disoriented, yet? imagine how i feel.)

but, no, joni's not quite right for me today--she's too tentative. she feels "too foolish & strange" to say the words she's planned. one wonders, too, how gender roles fit into this, esp. as this was recorded in the late 60s. but damn she sings it pretty.

the sentiment is otm, though. i don't know where i stand. today, i was on campus, filling out paperwork, ordering textbooks for my classes (oh, yeah, i got that position i mentioned the other day). i stopped in the library; i saw that they were giving away some books. i thought, "she'd like these"--and the moment i put them in my car, i felt i made a mistake, that i shouldn't have done it. the words of isaac hayes ran through my head : "ladies, sometimes you mistake love & kindess for weakness." or, too, mistake love & kindness for wanting something in return.

but i've no expectations of reciprocation. for me a gift is the reification (!) of a kind thought, concretized confirmation that at this particular time, on this particular day, you were thought of. again, like morrissey, my world view is kinda manichaeistic, the forces of idealism locked in eternal struggle w/ the armies of pessimism, the love inside the house i grew up in vs. the hostility of the world outside. i give & give & give to people, but i don't look for anything in return--maybe acknowledgement, at the most. but, w/ her, maybe it's b/c of what we once had, well, it seems my only mistake is i'm hoping. i should know at this point that she won't reply to anything, if only b/c i've let her know how much she was missed while she was away & b/c i kept asking for her to make some time for me.

i know how to undo this; i know how to make her call. she's given me the key herself, told me what one needs to do. but that would be base & therefore, whether she thought so or not, unworthy of friendship. so, morrissey sings, "it's war" in "the more you ignore me ... "--but for me, it's not. in many ways, that song sums up the situation better than any other on the album could. but war is a game. & i don't play games.

i've left it in her hands & this is the last time i'll ever bring it up (hooray!) ... until i change my mind again (groan!). at long last, i've got a lot of good things coming my way, as another band sings--no, no download for that one--& i'd like her to be a part of it. but i've done my part. i can only hope--there's that word again--i say, i can only hope that all of this really means nothing, that it's just another station on the difficult road to becoming friends. after all, she bought me back a souvenir from her trip. maybe i need to have faith that, in the words that close out vauxhall & i, she remains true to me ...

... in her own strange way.

24 July 2006

right, since i can't get it out of my head,

gene vincent - "cat man"
(from the gene vincent & his blue caps lp, available for purchase here.)
"c" is for the crazy hairdo that he wears around.
"a" is for the arms that he'll sneak around your waist.
"t" is for the taste of the lips belong to you.

cat man.

listening to 50s rock & roll, not only does it seem like they got to all the best ideas first, one also wonders how anyone who followed had the nerve to pick up a guitar. in homage, maybe, w/ bent knee, to keep the hoodoo that runs through songs like "cat man" alive. (see, for instance, the birthday party's cover on hee-haw.)

this is a fucking beast of a record. it all could have gone silly & kitschy so easily--shouts of "CAT MAN!!" at the top of one's lungs & all--but sweet gene wouldn't allow that. "tiger man" has a better name, but cat man's got his girl.

yours, too.
vain, selfish & lazy's sort-of half-year round-up.

tracks. (links lead to write-ups, where applicable.)
10 sunshine underground - "commercial breakdown"
9 heavy blinkers - "try telling that to my baby"
8 josé gonzález - "hand on your heart"
7 delays - "valentine"
6 the lodger - "let her go"
5 t.i. - "what you know"
4 mission of burma - "2wice"
3 camera obscura - "lloyd, i'm ready to be heartbroken"
2 guillemots - "made-up love song #43"
1 nelly furtado - "maneater"

bonus : farina - "island of hotels" (click to download; click here to buy.).
my favorite track of the year i've not seen anyone else talk about. what i said then:
the first thing you notice about fariña is that they earn that tilde over the "n." from a distance, you'd think you were flying over the balearic islands, what w/ the trumpets and tropical sway. it's only when you land that you realize it's actually the isle of man. fariña, then, are a bit like an english calexico w/ a helpful dollop of go-betweens. indeed, "island of hotels" sounds quite like "bye bye pride" had it been recorded in la brisa de la palma. "don't need a crystal ball / to see the future at all," the chorus goes, "don't need to know who to call / to know where to find me," and where the go-betweens used three-part harmony, fariña increase that number exponentially. it's incredibly bright and buoyant, reminiscent of the balmy effects of the guillemots. the trumpets, meanwhile, do suggest calexico, but they also call belle & sebastian to mind--which in turns brings one to love, both band and feeling. the world is at your feet and la brisa is at your back, and it's an unseasonably warm one for england.
now i say, i feel like the pied piper of the brokenhearted when i whistle this one loud.

albums. (click to purchase.)
10 heavy blinkers - the night & i are still so young
9 futureheads - news & tributes
8 ghostface killah - fishscale
7 art brut - bang bang rock & roll
6 scott walker - the drift
5 my latest novel - wolves
4 belle & sebastian - the life pursuit
3 herbert - scale
2 guillemots - through the window pane
1 broken family band - balls

23 July 2006

guillemots - "if the world ends" (from the through the window pane lp, import available for purchase here.)

my dearest friend, her deepest fear is the end of the world. not her own death, mind, but everyone else's--and the destruction of the world, too. it make sense w/ me : i left my old job once to go elsewhere : it wasn't nearly so sad as when we closed & the whole damned thing came tumbling down.

it makes sense to me : i've barely seen her shed a tear for herself, which awes me given the things she's gone through. i have seen her cry for people she doesn't know; tears, too, that don't seem so much like they've been pushed out of her eyes as like they've jumped, her sadness that profound. after the last time--well, the mascara never did come out of that t-shirt, which doesn't keep me from wearing it anyway.

she's my dearest friend, regardless of how i stand w/ her. i've seen so little of her, heard so little from her recently, and i don't know why that should be so, but i know that i miss the hell out of her. the upside is that all those frustrated & unresolved daytime thoughts become my evening's entertainment : the most time i've spent w/ her of late was in a dream. which reminds me of a poem by robert desnos:
I've dreamed of you so much you're losing your reality.

Is there still time to reach that living body and kiss
onto that mouth the birth of the voice so dear to me?

I've dreamed of you so much that my arms, accustomed
to being crossed on my breast while hugging your shadow,
would perhaps not bend to the shape of your body.

And, faced with the real appearance of what has haunted
and ruled me for days and years, I would probably
become a shadow.

O sentimental balances.

I've dreamed of you so much it's no longer right
for me to awaken. I sleep standing up, my body exposed
to all signs of life and love, and you
the only one who matters to me now, I'd be less able
to touch your face and your lips than the face and the lips
of the first woman who came along.

I've dreamed of you so much, walked so much, spoken
and lain with your phantom that perhaps nothing more is left me
than to be a phantom among phantoms and a hundred times more
than the shadow that walks and will joyfully walk
on the sundial of your life.
... which reminds me that i wanted to share w/ her another poem, about the end of the world no less, but we can never find the time. i said to her once that there was never an end to the things we could talk about, only to the time we had to talk about them in. and so knowing she's an avid reader of these pages, i use this virtual space to make real time.

when we talk lately, though, it's never about anything that means something, mostly me being dramatic about never getting to see her, unwittingly helping her to forget what she ever saw in me. when we talk in dreams, my unconscious mind supplies all of the dialogue; what i love most about her is that the author of her conversation is someone i've never come across, in life or in fiction, someone i'd happily spend all my time w/.

in "if the world ends," fyfe too has a dream, and his former beloved is in it, more beautiful than ever. she doesn't speak, she merely plays along the doomed shore w/ buckets of sand, water running through her hands. he has faith in her power to transcend even the end of the world :
if the world ends,
it won't finish you.
you're not the type they can capture,
you flit like a flycatcher.
they can't pin you down.
the song builds slow, as many songs on through the window pane do, but it does build--sand castles in the air, at that, w/ corridors & passages filled w/ spectral humming. then the waves come in & tear the playhouse down--but what's left, well, it's even more beautiful than all that came before, and the end of the world seems like a small price to pay for a beginning so ripe w/ possibility.

it's been raining around these parts like ... well, like the end of the world was nigh. we had the other day what they call a supercell thunderstorm, something i'd never ever heard of before, but it was something to behold, for sure. today, however, leaving work, i looked at the clouds--and they never seemed more beautiful to me, and all of the brutish weather was worth it if only b/c it led to this. my friend, she recently came back home from a trip. looking again at that sky, i can only think that the clouds have arranged themselves in this way to please her; that having gotten to know her as she passed through, they wish to make her life as beautiful as possible.

the clouds & i, then.

18 July 2006

so let me tell you.

my friend, who is so much of a presence here (& elsewhere)--well, she finally ditched that undeserving boyfriend; and jesus christ, will he regret this. she said to him basically that, pace iggy pop, she no longer wanted to be his dog. she did it; and she did it for herself; and overhead in the near distance one hears the sound of first flight & a hard-won song of joy.

i started a new job today. i'm interviewing for an adjunct position at a local university this week, hopefully.

my life of late has been a series of opportunities for me to put my foot in it, all of which i've seized w/ alacrity. the other day, at a party for my cousins, i was ready to put something else entirely in it, i.e. my backside right into a piece of ice cream cake.

but then something happened. right before the point of no return, my sister called out to me and mundane misfortune was for once averted. in other words, i feel like things are starting to go my way.

... & then, disaster struck, power surged to an inordinate degree through my computer & my motherboard was fried, as was my hard drive. even so, my hard drive was salvaged, my luck not having abandoned me entirely. (however : w/ the amount of money i've spent on this computer in the last six months, i probably could've purchased two dells.) thus, no posting.

but, tonight!

the young knives - "loughborough suicide" (from the voices of animals & men cd, released august 21, import available for preorder here.)

the young knives are a band that have been getting a lot of pub, who are liked by many sensible people, but also a band that i've felt nothing for until now. (cf. the mystery jets.) however, "lougborough suicide" is just about the song i've listened to most in the past week. it's like the buggles crossed w/ the wire of 154; bear in mind, too, that the album takes its name after an adam ant lyric. it's damn triumphant! like a young paul weller emerging from a pile of dead bodies, victims of the class war, and singing "i will survive!"

the chorus goes, "I WILL NEVER! GO DOWN! FIGHTING!"

and of a sudden, it all changes. the clarity of the vocal, not to mention the exclamation points, fooled me into thinking that this is something other than it is. instead of a rallying cry, it's the greatest paean to suburban ennui since the future bible heroes' "lonely days." it's a song, i think, for people who want to shout & proclaim, but who are more familiar w/ its tune than w/ its words. i do not know of what i wish to sing, but i feel as if there is at last reason to lift one's voice & join w/ another's, if only to declare that we won't get fooled again.

05 July 2006

the beauty room - "soul horizon" (from the beyond an infinite lp, released august 7, import available for preorder here.)

i know. everything you read up there sounds horrible. some of what i say below may be equally distasteful, but i have to ask you to trust me on this.

listening to this record, i was reminded of what robert christgau once said of debarge :
I know of no pop music more shameless in its pursuit of pure beauty--not emotional (much less intellectual) expression, just voices joining for their own sweet sake, with the subtle Latinized rhythms (like the close harmonies themselves) working to soften odd melodic shapes and strengthen the music's weave.
as you might have guessed, the beauty room shamelessly pursuits pure beauty, but whereas debarge's pursuit was vain, el's paeans to himself, the beauty room's pursuit extends outward, to some unnamed helen.

it's v. unlikely music; what i heard right off was the following : steely dan w/o the libido (& hired axes); debarge w/o the narcissism; junior boys w/o the beats; and p.m. dawn, the great lost band of the 90s (which doesn't exactly roll off the tongue given their string of pop hits & radio staples). no, i haven't heard a band so singlemindedly concentrated on reproducing the sublime, at the expense of all else, since p.m. dawn. and by "all else," i mean that this is music that is magnificently winnowed down, no solos and definitely no ego. like love, then, or how love should be.

03 July 2006

belle & sebastian - "i'm waking up to us" (from the push barman to open old wounds lp, available for purchase here.)

"i'm waking up to us," despite the trumpets on their earlier singles, is the belle & sebastian song that most resembles love, right down to stuart's stilted line delivery, recalling arthur lee at his most precious. this is ironic b/c it is also the belle & sebastian song that is most like the love that a friend of mine finds herself in.

but i fear it's neither too lovelike nor lifelike; it's a song i've really wished i had a reason to post. i may be flattering both myself and her to think that any of the words in this song are ones she could sing. every now & then, it seems close, i see a twitch, a stretch, an eye half-open. so far, though, i don't know that i can say she's woken up; i fear she might've decided to remain in bed, to remain benighted.

maybe, though, she takes her waking slow? regardless, she'll find someone at her bedside when she does--and i think she knows who it'll be.

02 July 2006

the rolling stones - "under my thumb" (from the aftermath (uk) lp, available for purchase here.)

"under my thumb" is a vicious way of thinking, old testament kind of justice, eyes poked out left & right. if you believe there's due cause for mick's spleen, you'll cite the opening lines:
under my thumb,
the girl who once had me down.
under my thumb,
the girl who once pushed me around.
and even if you don't believe there's due cause, it's disquieting how easily one slips inside the song, which is down to the first-person narrative & the handclaps. i'm not sure what the ethics involved are here, but i don't think there's anything wrong w/ singing along--perhaps we've all felt like mick does here at one time in our life, and this is just our way of sublimating.

imagine, however, being underneath the thumb. that is, imagine living this song.

imagine, too, that the first verse has been excised; instead there's scant reasoning behind his actions, at worst, petty reasoning, at best.

imagine that you've been told flat-out that it's enjoyable to make you squirm, and that may be the least offensive thing said or done.

lastly, imagine telling that first person, "i love you."

alert de saussure! we've got a serious slippage of signs here. when i speak to my friend, i feel like i need a translator. she says to me how it was "dumb" to try to undergo behavior that might effect a change in the romantic crisis and i am left severely nonplussed. here, the person in "love" isn't speaking a language unknown to herself, pace stendhal, she's speaking a language unknown to me, full of phrases i'm familiar w/--"love," "dumb," "mistake," "wrong," "relationship,"--but, in context, it all sounds scatological.

or, in other words, severely fucked. here are the rest of the lyrics, just so we know the type we're dealing w/.
it's down to me.
the difference in the clothes she wears.
down to me, the change has come,
she's under my thumb.

under my thumb,
the squirmin' dog who's just had her day.
under my thumb,
a girl who has just changed her ways.

it's down to me, yes it is.
the way she does just what she's told.
down to me, the change has come,
she's under my thumb.

under my thumb,
a siamese cat of a girl.
under my thumb,
she's the sweetest, hmmm, pet in the world.

it's down to me,
the way she talks when she's spoken to.
down to me, the change has come,
she's under my thumb.

under my thumb,
her eyes are just kept to herself.
under my thumb, well i,
i can still look at someone else.
our beloved dog, it seems, hasn't learned any new tricks, and is in all actuality forgetting those she used to know. and to what end?

i can't help but think of isabel archer in the portrait of a lady, that this is precisely the sort of song gilbert osmond would sing if he wouldn't doubtlessly find rock & roll too crude for his sensibilities. you wonder what sins isabel has committed that james hasn't shared w/ us ... until one realizes that in her v. refusal to leave osmond, not to abscond w/ caspar goodwood, whose kiss sends white lightning through her frame, she's committing a sin of pride. at that point, one must cease to think of her as a victim, for she is no longer someone whom something is happening to and has become someone actively courting heartache & disaster. one is forced to face that she may no longer be the same person; that, while it may not be irrevocable, she still has changed as utterly as her language.

& guess whom it's down to?