I was channel surfing tonight when I stopped on The Sing-Off long enough to see Ben Folds critiquing some a cappella group when I had a *FLASHBACK* just like in the movies. So, true story: in college, my (fairly serious) boyfriend dumped me with a Ben Folds song. This was my songwriter boyfriend who was “sweet and sensitive”, and a fairly decent if not cheesy songsmith. You’d think he would have written me a break-up song (like I did when I broke up with Theron — also a true story), but no. He told me to go to the record store, and find the Ben Folds Five album The Unauthorized Biography of Reinhold Messner. “Find the album, and go to track 2, and that’s what I want to tell you,” he said.
My parents were in town for some meeting or graduation or something, and I can still remember exactly how this discovery went down. I asked my dad if he could drive me to the record store (I didn’t have a car at the time). We pulled up and I very casually searched through the Ben Folds Five section under the fluorescent lights in the corner of a strip mall that also had a restaurant that specialized in hot dogs and baklava. And then I found the album in question. I flipped it over and quickly scanned the back. “Don’t change…your plans…” what the?!?!? I was fuming mad, and also super depressed, kind of like that Alanis Morissette song “You Oughta Know.”
I sent Jordan (*name has been changed to protect the wussy) a text message. “Don’t change your plans?” I raged, “What is that supposed to mean?!” We were breaking up. Broken up, actually, I just had to catch up to the point where he dropped me off the cliff. Totally completely blindsided.
Anyway, like the emotional masochist I was (*still am), I bought the album and listened to that track over and over, until its lyrics burned through my soul, and embossed themselves on my back.
If you don’t feel like listening to it (you should, though, it’s a great song), the lyrics to the chorus are: “don’t change your plans for me/ I won’t move to LA/ the leaves are falling back east/ that’s where I’m gonna stay”.
And in a sick twist of fate or whatever you want to call it, my future fun times were cancelled (or not actually cancelled because they were never made to begin with), but anyway, news of the fact that I would not
be having any fun plans traveled to me via text message whilst I was watching the Sing-Off, looking at Ben Folds’ face.
So thanks a lot, Ben. You’re ruining my life.