Are you happy now?

I was very recently introduced to music from a new-to-me artist, Richard Shindell.
He’s been around for a while, but is not someone I probably would have found
on my own.

I’m always amazed at what a profound affect music has on me. Perhaps
I shouldn’t be so surprised, that someone else has been able to capture the
human condition so accurately, after all, I’m not the only person on the planet.
And yet, I am blown away that someone else crystallized something that is so
personal, and oddly unsettling.

Anyway, the reason for this post. There’s a song off of his 1992 album, called
“Are you happy now” that really has struck a chord within me. It’s not a particularly
happy song, but one about the loss of a relationship, and the singer wonders
if his departed is happy in her new situation, while he laments what she left
behind — him. I remember such a situation not so long ago, when I left Tennessee
and my soon-to-be ex-husband asked me if I was finally happy. This really is
his song, not mine, but I see the situation from his perspective and its a little
uncomfortable. I guess that’s the point — walking a mile in another’s shoes.

I think I’ll stick with my own broken-in sneakers.

Are You Happy Now, © by Richard
You took the toaster when you went
You never paid your half the rent
You took the spices from the rack
But you don’t have to put ’em back
Cause in your haste on Halloween
You left your camera on the bed
Where we played roles in black and white
You left a roll of black and white
I set the timer thought of you
Put the lens up to my head
I took a photograph for you
What comes out gray is really red
So are you happy now
Are you happy now?
Are you happy now?
I’ve sat all night and now it’s dawn
And I cannot believe my eyes
There’s garbage strewn across the lawn
Where we once stared up at the sky
And streams of paper fill the tree
That hovered over you and me
And shaving cream covers the car
That we picked up in Baltimore
And though I know it’s hard to tell
I hope that what’s his name treats you well
I still maintain that he’s a bum
But it’s your money have some fun
So are you happy now
Are you happy now?
Are you happy now?
I smashed your pumpkin on the floor
The candle flickered at my feet
As goblins flew across the room
The children peered into the room
A cowboy shivered on the porch
Cinderella checked her watch
A hobo waited in the street
An angel whispered trick or treat
What was I supposed to do
But to sit there in the dark
I was amazed to think that you
Would take the candy with you too
So are you happy now
Are you happy now?
Are you happy now?
You always asked why I had not
Written you a verse or two
Since that’s the one thing I regret
I dedicate this one to you
So are you happy now
Are you happy now?
Are you happy now?
Are you happy now?