SAS 007: A song that makes you cry

“Dog Years” by Maggie Rogers.

It doesn’t make me cry anymore. It didn’t that often really. But it’s one of so very few that have.

I used to play Call of Duty online, and over time, I started playing with the same people over and over again. Shrooom and Lopez and Panda and so on. I remember talking to Panda, and progressively we’d talk more and more. Then we’d share social media information. So we talked through that. Eventually we started texting. And we talked all the time. Every day, in fact.

It was nice to have someone with an objective view of my life (she was not involved in it at all) but also a subjective view (she only knew what I told her). She’s sharp and passionate, and we’d talk about everything. Our pasts and our presents and our futures. What I thought about this person or that girl or the trolley problem or climate change or how Kyle Lowry did tonight or the reason I love making music or how much she loves her niece or the way we agreed that Coraline and Paranorman were underrated masterpieces that showcased the value of at one point feeling like the outgroup and reconciling that with the manifestations of it and then choosing to do what you want anyway because why the fuck not.

I found out she lived in Toronto. So after years of talking to each other, I’d finally gotten myself together enough to go to Toronto. I was there for a week. It was right before Christmas, so there was snow and lots of decorations. I loved the place. We spent the entire week together. We visited ice bars and the Christmas markets and the CN Tower (and had dinner there!) and Jurassic Park and the ice skating rink and the best place for a skyline view. Then we said our goodbyes and held each other for the last time. I wasn’t sure when the next time I’d see this person was, but I knew I didn’t want this to be the last.

As I sat on the plane, I started playing music. It took off, and soon it was high enough that I could see the sun peeking over the mountains before it would rise for the city. Aspenglow. And “Dog Years” came on.

I count my time in dog years
Swimming in sevens, slow dancing in seconds
Oh, and I’m the one that loves you
Oh, and I’m the one that loves you
I spend my time daydreaming
As sure as the sea
It’s just you and me
Oh, and I’m the one that loves you
Oh, and I’m the one that loves you
And if you had a bad week
Just let me touch your cheek
Oh, and I’ll be there waiting
When you get frustrated
I know things are changing
But, darling, I’m saying
I’ll be singing you in all of my songs
Come what may
I’ll still stay inside your mind
For all of time
Singing, ooh
We will be alright in the afterlife
Of all that is shifting and shaking my system
I know your rhythm
And I know, I know, I know, I know
I know that I’m the one that loves you
Oh, and I’m the one that loves you
And if you had a bad week
Then I’ll sing you to sleep
Oh, and I’ll be there waiting
If you start to get jaded
I know things are changing
But, darling, I’m saying
I’ve been here all along
Come what may
I’ll still stay inside your mind
For all of time
Singing, ooh
We will be alright
Not in vain, we’ll still stay the same
Inside your mind
For all of time
Singing, ooh
We will be alright
In the afterlife
In the afterlife, hmm
I count my time in dog years, dog years, dog years, dog years, dog years
We will be alright (Dog years, dog years)
We will be alright (Dog years, dog years)
In the afterlife (Dog years, dog years, dog years, dog years)
Singing, baby, we will be alright (Dog years, dog years)
We will be alright
We will be alright

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