My Life to Music, A Mini-Series: #2 Intoxicated by Symmetry

We all have songs that hit our iPod and we instantly hit next. We’re too lazy to take the time to hook the iPod up to iTunes and delete it, so we’ll just continue to hit next. Symmetry is not one of these, and this local artist when I was a Rhode Island local will probably be in my rotation till the end of time.

This is my life to music.

Intoxicated by Symmetry

I moved to Providence, Rhode Island in 2008, relocating for a company that (now reflecting) could give two shits about your wellbeing and your work/life balance. But when you’re 24, nothing is balanced, so I didn’t mind.

This was my first time living in a real city, and I wanted to do it right. So with the little bit of money I got for relocation costs being the only bit of money I got in the bank, I move my ass to the most expensive and swanky part of Providence – the Eastside. Wayland Square, to be exact.

You know the phrase ‘land rich’? Well, I was ‘rent rich’. I lived in a 1-bedroom apartment in an old Victorian house built in 1880. The landlord was an aged woman on the second floor that didn’t run a credit check, didn’t require a deposit, and didn’t make me sign a lease. I simply slipped a check under her door each month, typically 7-10 days late, and she didn’t mind. I can appreciate that kind of wealth, when you don’t even care if your tenants pay. I remember when she passed, our building got broken into by obituary chasers. I showed those suckers – I had nothing of value.

Being rent rich, I couldn’t afford anything else. And when you can’t afford anything, you find out how incredibly clever you are. Instead of internet, you place your desktop computer in the very corner of the living room and connect to Starbucks free WiFi across the street. When it’s free, you don’t mind reconnecting every 30 minutes. When you can’t afford an AC unit, you rush home after work, open the freezer door, and gently place your cat in it (door open, I’m not a complete idiot!), letting him watch you cook dinner while he cools down. I mean, it’s not like you have any food in the freezer, but I’m sure the next tenants were completely perplexed by a freezer with fur-infused icicles. And when you can’t afford furniture, you shop Craigslist and Salvation Army, creating such an ugly apartment that HGTV would even deem it unsalvageable.

Sounds horrible, right? Wrong. I loved every minute of it. I was an idiot with my money, and I loved every moment of that idiocy. Now, if you ask me how I liked it after the damage was done, I’d sing a different tune. But at the time, purely heaven on earth.

My friend group was just as eclectic as my living room, and I met a guy named Kyle, a gifted videographer and producer. He actually created the Intoxicated video and introduced me to the music of Symmetry. When I heard his music, it captured me. It’s pointed yet fun. Thoughtful without making you think. You can flow with it, understand it, go along with his story. It’d get me ramped up, regardless where I was ‘ramping’ to.

I once dragged my girlfriend to see one of his shows in an old abandoned firehouse in a sketchy part of town. He opened the show with an entire high school marching band blasting through the front doors, making his way to the stage, and performing an amazing show. I got his CD that night, and played it so much that it’s now all scratched up.

After two years in Providence, I got tapped on the shoulder by corporate and was relocated to Las Vegas, NV, begrudgingly. On my day of departure, I cried so much that I’m pretty sure airport security thought I was a flight risk. I clearly looked like I had nothing to live for. So with a floral suitcase so old it didn’t even have wheels, a 3-legged cat so fat he barely fit under my seat, I board my plane with my memories of Providence, and my music from Providence. I considered, for a while, reaching out and just seeing how I could help get his music out. Maybe make friends with the clubs and casinos and get them to play his music. But since I am not an agent, no nothing about it, and the entertainment industry in Vegas is ruthless, that thought seemed ill-advised.

So I enjoy his music. I run to it. I dance to it. I sometimes get into a solemn mood with it. But I have it. I wish more people did.

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