Talking to Girls About Duran Duran: One Young Man's Quest for True Love and a Cooler Haircut

At that moment, I knew she was the girl for me. Of course, we'd already been going out for a few weeks, so I wasn't, like, shocked or anything. But still, it's never not nice to to keep realizing.

But bringing people together is what music has always done best.

But “ma’am” doesn’t translate in the North, where it just startles and offends.

But when you're a teenage boy, you can be narrow-minded about things that are girlie, things that are frivolous, things that are pop. Boys always want to be taken seriously, and they always want to transcend the tawdry emotion of the pop singer -- it's a fairly standard response to the rigors of young manhood... This isn't so different from how people talk about culture now. Rock epics are for boys; pop hits are for girls. When you're a boy, pop is scary because it's a maneater. You sing along with a pop song, you turn into a girl. That takes some degree of emotional risk.

By the time you're an adult, you're used to seeing your friends disappear into their five-year plans. They drop out to get married, have babies, go to grad school, get divorced. They start a band or enter the penal system. They vanish for years at a time - some come back, some don't. Some of them you wait for and some you let go. Sometimes the only way they come back is in a song.

Don't charge the mound. Once you agree to fight, you lost already. Don't start none, won't be none.

He sang about girls in space-why not? That's where all the cool girls were. (They weren't where I could find them, that was for sure.)

I felt indestructible, or at least undestroyed, more alive than I'd ever been.

I had never been so extravagantly proud of having blood that clotted.

I had never gotten the hang of dating — I was always going to be somebody who either had a girlfriend or didn't.

It was like trying to break up with the color orange, or Wednesday, or silent e. It was the most passionate and tumultuous relationship I'd ever known.

I've played the song for a lot of people who respond, 'Hmmmm, this is interesting,' but in a way it's more like 'There are two exits in this room, the window and the door. If this song doesn't end soon, I'm going to opt for the window.

I was somebody's boyfriend now. This would mean a lot of trial and error. But she was who I wanted to try and err with.

I was too young to know adult life is full of accidents and interrupted moments and empty beds you climb into and don't climb out of.

Learning, over and over. The work of love will make you bloody and it will make you lonely.

Like any teenager who reads The Great Gatsby, probably, I was madly in love with the teacher who had opened it up for me.

Listening to it now is like a personally guided tour through my past.

Monogamous musicians are like vegan hockey players.

Morrissey was my Mrs. Garrett, the house mother from the Facts of Life, a soothing adult figure giving me words of wisdom.

My ears rang all the way home and I didn't want them to stop. It made me want to start something.

My sisters were the coolest people I knew, and still are. I have always aspired to be like them and know what they know. My sisters were the color and noise in my black-and-white boy world-how I pitied my friends who had brothers. Boys seemed incredibly tedious and dim compared to my sisters, who were always a rush of energy and excitement, buzzing over all the books, records, jokes, rumors and ideas we were discovering together. I grew up thriving on the commotion of their girl noise, whether they were laughing or singing or staging an intervention because somebody was wearing stirrup pants. I always loved being lost in that girl noise.

Not being able to protect her from things was the most frightening thing I'd ever felt, and it kicked in as soon as we got together. With every year we spent together, I became more conscious that I now had an infinitely expanding number of reasons to be afraid. I had something to lose.

No worries" is the best thing to happen to sullen teenagers since I was one - even better than vampire sexting, GTL, or Call of Duty. When I was a sullen teenager, we had to make do wtih the vastly inferior "whatever".

"No worries" beats "whatever" six ways to Sunday. I'ts a vaguely mystical way of saying "I hear your mouth make noise, saying something that I plan to ignore." It has a noble Rasta-man vibe, as if you're quoting some sort of timeless yet meaningless proverb on the nature of change - "Soon come," or "As the cloud is slow, the wind is quick." In terms of ignoring provocation, "no worries" is just about perfect.

Rock stars did not invent burning out. They just do it louder.

The Stones suggested that if you dabble in decadence, you could turn into a devil-worshipping junkie. Paul McCartney suggested that if you mess around with girl worship, you could turn into a husband. So Paul was a lot scarier.

When I was a junior, my school introduced badminton, which was clearly a P.E. department ploy to get me away from the wrestling room, and it worked, since the first time I played badminton was like the first time I tasted sushi or heard the Beatles or read Wordsworth. This was a sport? This counted for gym requirements?