The club serves as my weekly opportunity to impersonate a sleek, graceful gazelle – sprinting and darting around downtown pedestrians with the herd. And then, at every mile, I take a shot. The shots feed my violent alcoholism and the club itself feeds my ego. I run seven days a week, but the Running Club lets me show off. I've been getting faster and faster and didn't think anyone noticed until another runner said something.
Guy In My Running Club: "How the shit did you get your pace down to 7.2 minutes?!"I weirded him out, but I wasn't joking. One of the first things I did after setting up my Spotify account last November was create a Songs That Remind Me of You playlist. Because it combines my two favorite things: romanticized memories about people that I used to like and now fucking detest and fun mixtapes. The playlist walks the line between sentimental testament to my love life and self-mutilation, but I love it and I listen to it all the time – especially when I'm running.
Me: "Well, I'm listening to a playlist of like 30 songs that remind me of people I've dated. It gives me something to run away from."
Guy: "I really like your shoes, man."
Linger – The Cranberries
Wonderwall – Oasis
Somewhere Only We Know – Keane
Come Pick Me Up – Ryan Adams
Nothing Left To Lose – Mat Kearney
Listen – Beyonce
Naive Orleans – Anberlin
I Wanna Dance With Somebody – Whitney Houston
When You're Gone – Avril Lavigne
A-Punk – Vampire Weekend
At The Stars – Better Than Ezra
Lolli Lolli – Three 6 Mafia
I Love My Bitch – Busta Rhymes
At Last – Etta James
Crush – David Archuleta
The Promise – Tracy Chapman
Sullivan Street – Counting Crows
I Heard Love Is Blind – Amy Winehouse
My Friends Over You – New Found Glory
Hey, Soul Sister – Train
Bulletproof – La Roux
Mine – Taylor Swift
Whatever It Is – Zac Brown Band
Collide – Rachael Yamagata
Are You Gonna Kiss Me Or Not – Thompson Square
Xxxo – M.I.A.
I Wanna Be Your Boyfriend – Discovery
Crown On The Ground – Sleigh Bells
Tongue Tied – Grouplove
True Affection – The Blow
Cosmic Love – Florence + The Machine
Don't Stop (Color On The Wall) – Foster The People
The tracks are listed chronologically, beginning with my first girlfriend. But in terms of being inclusive, the playlist is slim. That isn't to say that only legitimate boyfriends and girlfriends are honored. Quite the contrary. I Heard Love Is Blind reminds me of a trick who looked exactly like another guy I was dating at the time (See Why I'm Awesome/An Asshole). And Don't Stop (Color On The Wall) is a recent addition thanks to a peachy fellow named Walker from Athens, Georgia.
Also, some of the songs carry more weight than others. Linger was literally playing in the background when I lost my virginity, while Lolli Lolli was McBougie's ringtone when we met back in 2008. Come Pick Me Up was on the radio when my first boyfriend dropped me off after our last fight, and I'll always remember laying by the pool and listening to Collide the day that Wit's End moved back to Houston.
So why even create something like this? Because sometimes I feel like a callous prick when it comes to dealing with [most] of my exes, and this keeps me in check. It's kind of hard to feel like a badass when a David Archuleta song can make you flustered and semi.
But I'll just run with it.
*In 2000, my dad hung a poster in our garage from the 1999 World Championships in Athletics that featured Maurice Greene, Marion Jones, and some other black guy. And it still hangs there today. Which is why I can easily pull Greene's name out of my ass and appear interesting and well-versed on historical American athletics. Psych ya.