This is kind of from my “who needs men” songwriting phase. I’ve always admired women with a ‘who needs men’ attitude, although in reality I’ve never been one. Even when I wrote this song, although I was single, I was still dependent on various men for various things like money, food, housing, laundry, transportation, friendship, guitar tunings, advice and approval. But I didn’t feel I was getting these things for free. I felt I was paying top dollar, trading little pieces of my soul for little pieces of safety.
That’s why “man hating feminists” seem heroic to me, not because I think there is anything particularly hateful about men, but because it’s such a bold move to say “Screw you men! I’m opening this jar for myself!” I put them in the same category as people who live off the grid or swim with piranhas for fun. People eager to sacrifice comfort and safety for crazy independence and adventure. Sassy, brassy ladies with nerve. I wish at least a tiny piece of their nerve would rub off on me.
In the movie Brooklyn’s Finest, a Brooklyn cop goes on a killing spree in order afford a safer home for his family. I can totally relate to his feelings, and yet, I kept wanting to yell at him, “Move to Indiana! Why don’t you just move to Indiana!! Don’t you realize there is cheaper housing there?!?”
Why does Brooklyn even exist- why doesn’t everyone just move to Indiana? What is the upside to Brooklyn? As far as I can tell, there isn’t more stuff to do, there isn’t greater earning potential… so, what gives?
At any rate, this is another song I wrote while struggling to keep my head above water in the belly of that concrete monster. As I’ve mentioned before, one of the hardest things to deal with was feeling deprived of all the things that make life feel happy and comfortable, like friends, nature, a happy home, a slice of pizza that hasn’t been held in a stranger’s dirty hands. My mind would spin around and around trying to think of ways I could bring this lost pastoral energy back into my life (Because somehow, just as in Brooklyn’s Finest, the idea that I could simply leave never seemed to enter my mind.)
At one point, I was convinced that the color orange was the answer. I saw Brooklyn as basically being the Kingdom of Gray, and thought orange might be the color that could cut through the thick dullness that gray represented, and bring in the energy of the Harvest, that time when all your efforts are rewarded and all the seeds you have planted come to fruition.
So, not having much money to spend on the color orange, I bought a basketball, a pair of orange high top shoes (the only orange shoes I could find for $9), plus some orange tissue paper and candles. I taped the orange paper to my wall and lit the orange candles beneath it. But when I opened my door, the paper caught fire and flew across the room like a giant orange monster, landing on the floor where I stomped it out (and then extinguished the wall). I decided to put the orange candles on my kitchen table instead, and let them burn through the night so I could wake up and enjoy my harvest in the morning. Instead, I was woken by a strange sound that turned out to be the entire surface of my kitchen table burning. The spirits of the harvest at work!