Tag Archives: love

Sarah Mary Chadwick’s “Full Mood” is a hauntingly beautiful love song for our time

I get a lot of press releases and pitches from people who want me to write about their work. So when Tristan Scott-Berhends e-mailed me out of the blue with the new music video he directed, I flagged it but didn’t think much about it.

I’d never heard of Tristan or Sarah Mary Chadwick, the artist whose video he directed, before he e-mailed. However, as soon as I clicked on the YouTube video, I knew this was something special. Chadwick’s stripped back, throaty vocals swept over me like an icy Lake Michigan wave, transporting me back to those days in the early ’10s when I first moved to Chicago. I was in my 20s, a whole lot thinner and a lot more fashionable, and the world was my oyster.

“Full Mood” didn’t remind me of any one man I dated. It reminded me of many. The guy who booked a fancy hotel room in the Loop so that we could have a weekend as tourists in our own city. The guy who pinned me against the freezers at the Target on Elston so that he could kiss me. The Viking–oh the Viking, my six-foot-sexy broad-shouldered, blonde haired, blue eyed colleague who is married to a woman now but back then wanted nothing more than me. We would get drunk in North Center before drunkenly stumbling back to his apartment in Roscoe Village, passing out snuggled up on the mattress he had on the floor – what passed for a bed in those days. Well, at least to a broke 20-something in the city.

Scott-Berhend’s video is just as sexy as my memories and no doubt contributed to the walk down memory lane. It tells the love story of two ridiculously attractive men living in New York. Seeing them galavant around the city in Instagram-filtered footage was incredibly nostalgic, if only because I no longer live in the city and even if I did, no one is riding the train or dancing in the streets during the pandemic (or at least, they shouldn’t be). It made me miss those carefree days, when I had fewer wrinkles and fewer pounds and my biggest problem was that I lived off the Blue Line but worked off the Brown Line.

Being young and in love in the city is a magical experience. There’s so much to get up to, so many adventures to be had, and–crucially–someone to have them with. Those days are long gone, at least for me. But oh, how I remember them. Cherish them. Long for them.

As we all lock down for another wave of Covid, “Full Mood” reminds me of what came before, and hopefully what lays on the other side.

Watch the video below:

Skylar Baker-Jordan is a freelance writer based in Tennessee. His work has appeared at the Independent, Huff Post UK, Salon, and elsewhere. Follow him on Twitter @skylarjordan and become a sustainer at www.patreon.com/skylarjordan

Fuck 2014. Let’s Raise a Glass to 2015!

Me, in the autumn of 2014

Me, in the autumn of 2014

My mate Jim tweeted about a tradition he has of opening the door to show the old year out and show the new year in. I like this.

I’m happy to see the back of 2014, and excited to meet 2015.

Look, this year fucking sucked. I entered it depressed, was sacked from a job five days in, and pretty much wallowed in misery for the first 10 months. It’s the year I gained 50 pounds, and losing it has been a struggle. It’s the year my brother deployed to Afghanistan. My adopted Chicago mum was diagnosed with cancer, after my adopted Chicago dad had to have emergency surgery on their holiday in Hawaii. It’s also the year I didn’t have sex. Not once. Nope. Never.

But this is also the year I published my first national piece in America. It’s the year I got a free car. And a free trip to London. And it’s the year I started working with an editor who not only gets me, but really seems to believe in me. It’s the year I met the Doctor and took off in the TARDIS, the year one of my best friends married her soulmate, and the year I attended my first NLGJA conference. It’s the year I reconnected with my family, met 4 of my nieces and nephews. It’s the year I met booberry.

I just gotta get this out though. This year has been hell. The Columnist folded, unexpected and unannounced, even to its writers. MB was a horrible fit for me, and completely unfairly sacked me. Starbucks is, quite possibly, the worst job I’ve had since I was 18 and worked at our campus “sports bar” (use that term loosely, cos they didn’t serve alcohol). And at the end, my best friend moved away. This year was bloody miserable.

But I’m optimistic. I’m looking forward to 2015. I’m starting it off right. I have an essay about to be published at a major US site, and I’ve got a regular contributing gig to a UK magazine I’m going to start writing for. I’m going back to London in February, and I’m hoping that booberry and I can figure out something (if he wants to; I’m not convinced he does). And I’ve got a good day job that, while it’s not my passion, I like. My boss is awesome. The people I work with are awesome. I can’t complain.

My family is all in good health. My friends are so incredibly supportive. My life is good.

I’m spending New Year’s Eve getting drunk by myself in my apartment, but that’s my choice. It seemed fitting. I needed to decompress from the year. I needed to reflect. I needed to process everything that’s happened.

And I have. And it’s done.

2014, fuck you. 2015, kiss me.