Day 1: a song that reminds you of being 9 years old and drinking honeysuckles in the backyard after piano class while your mom pays the teacher

 

Day 2: a song that you listened to driving on the interstate for the first time, even though you weren’t allowed, and you got off one exit from where you got on because you were nervous

 

Day 3: a cover song that you never knew was a cover until someone at a party–where you were already feeling self conscious anyway–made you feel really stupid about it and now it’s the only thing you can remember when you think back on that party

 

Day 4: a song your coworker would always play and it used to annoy you but now you kind of love it and want to tell them, but you probably won’t

 

Day 5: a song that you only ever listened to 30 seconds of because it was on a “hit clip” that you got inside of a happy meal

 

Day 6: a song by someone you personally know that comes on shuffleevery time, like a cruel jokewhen you are just trying to make out and not think about your friends

 

Day 7: a song that always makes you think “i should do this at karaoke” but then you forget when you are actually at karaoke and you just do “Cowboy Take Me Away” again

 

Day 8: a song that feels like the first cold day in early October and it makes you want to cry from nostalgia but also smile with hope for the future and the combination makes your arm hairs tinglebut it could just be the cooler weather doing that

 

Day 9: a song that you only know about because it was featured on one of the biggest cultural influences of your generationan OC mix

 

Day 10: a song that you used to say you’d play at your wedding until you started questioning if getting married was ever something you would actually want to do and if you did, it probably wouldn’t be the kind of wedding with traditional “wedding dances” anyway

 

Day 11: a song that you loved when you were 8 years old but then your dad told you it was “about cocaine” and you didn’t fully understand what that meant but you weren’t sure if it was ok to continue listening or not, so you stopped

 

Day 12: a song that you thought was gay until you read an interview where the artist said it was about “friendship” which is, ok, fine…but still makes you like it 10% less

 

Day 13: the fourth song on the burnt cd that your high school boyfriend made for you that you’ve somehow kept for 10 years and occasionally still listen to when you lose cell service on long drives 

 

Day 14: a song that always makes you feel like you’re in a movie and you base a whole feature film concept around this song in your mind and end up texting a pitch to your one filmmaker friend who politely says “no”

 

Day 15: a song you play when you’re cooking dinner with your girlfriend but you accidentally burn everything because you can’t stop dancing

 

Day 16: the third song you downloaded from Napster–before you deleted it, fearing arrest every time you saw a police car in your neighborhood

 

Day 17: a Dave Matthews Band song that you’ve only recently (as in, in the past few weeks) started liking again and now you get sponsored Instagram ads for his winery in your stories and honestly? you might buy the wine too

 

Day 18: a song that you posted to your Instagram story because every hot queer you knew from Tinder had posted it to theirs too, but you didn’t even like it that much, you just wanted to feel a part of something bigger than yourself

 

Day 19: a song by Taylor Swift about being fifteen years old that still makes you cry and cry and cry even though you are turning 29 next month

 

Day 20: a song by a band that you never saw live because–when it really came down to it–you wanted to stay in and watch The Real Housewives, but if someone were to ask you, you would say “oh hell yea, they’re so good live”

 

Day 21: a different song that you suspected was about being gay and then you later find out it’s true! it’s a gay song! you add it to every playlist 

 

Day 22: a song by a band your ex loved and you go on Spotify “private session” to play the whole album while quietly reading old texts 

 

Day 23: a song by a band YOU love and you once saw your ex playing it on Spotify and you wonder if they know about “private session” or if they wanted you to see it and maybe feel tormented by it but then you remember your therapist saying that most people don’t think about you at all and so you go take a shower or something

 

Day 24: a song that mentions a place where you once lived and therefore you automatically love it, no questions asked

 

Day 25: a song that the popular girls danced to at your elementary school talent show but you were not allowed to be a part of it because “there are only 3 girls in 3LW, Emma”

 

Day 26: a song that your 10th grade spring break crush played while feeling you up on the beach in Panama City that you later downloaded as your flip phone ringtone, to remember him by

 

Day 27: a broadway song that you actually think you could’ve performed someday if you’d kept doing plays past the time when you were assigned to “run lights” for the 5th grade spring musical

 

Day 28: a song from the 90s that you were absolutely too young to care about but enough Gen X men convinced you of it’s significance so you end up saying things like “this band was really influential” in the place of a real opinion

 

Day 29: a song that you weren’t allowed to watch the music video for because it had two girls kissing, but you once saw it on every single screen for sale in a Best Buy and consider this a “core memory”

 

Day 30: whatever song you most wish you could see live right now but know you would spend the whole time debating whether or not it would be worth it to record a video or try to just live in the moment and so you end up being able to successfully do neither 

 

 

Emma Ensley is an artist and writer living in Asheville, NC. She designs beer labels for a job and tweets at @emmaensley.

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