Why Everyone Should Read Gone With the Wind

B is for Best-Selling Novel

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Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

When it came to look for a Best-Seller to put on the list I decided to start first with 1916, as that book would be celebrating its 100th anniversary.

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But I didn’t see any I was a very big fan of so I went to 1926. Nothing there as well.

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I decided I would then check 1936 and if I couldn’t find a book I was a fan of I would try 1896, then 1886, then 1876, and then go back to 1946 and on and on until I finally found something.

However, I stopped at 1936 with Gone With the Wind.

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Gone With the Wind was published in 1936 and at time sold 176,000 copies. It was a best seller in 1936 and 1937, winning the Pulitzer Prize in 1937, and by 1938 sold a million copies. In 1939 the film came out and the book sold two million copies.

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My first introduction to Gone With the Wind was when I first watched the film when a friend and I were going through AFI’s list of the best films. We made it to #15 before we became too busy and haven’t finished doing it since.

Oh well.

Oh well.

Anyways, I watched it and thought the movie was really good. The cinematography was absolutely stunning, it was full of good quotes, and Clark Gable was just amazing as Rhett Butler (funny thing is Margaret Mitchell didn’t want him as she thought he wasn’t handsome enough to be Rhett).

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I didn’t care for Scarlett as I thought she was a…

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And thought she was just horrible, not Vivian Leigh’s performance but her.

Then three years later, as it was on my reading list, I decided to read it, borrowing my mother’s copy. And when I read it I was amazed at how it was a truly fantastic book!

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And I believe that everyone should read it at least once.

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So the book is a huge epic! It follows the Irish O’Hara clan from the father’s immigration into the new world and settling in the South, the radical changes from the Antebellum period, to the Civil War, and the Reconstruction era.  At the heart of all this chaos is the story of the beautiful, ruthless Scarlett ‘O’ Hara and the dashing soldier of fortune, Rhett Butler.

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So let’s list off why one should read this book:

A) Shows How the Irish were Viewed in America

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So we start off with Gerald O’Hara, head of the clan. Back in Ireland he was a part of a Catholic Emancipation group, like the Ribbonmen or such and ends up having to flee because of his political activities. He comes to America and isn’t always treated very nicely, as the Irish weren’t. Often they were made fun off, not allowed in certain areas, and thought to be taking over jobs. He starts working in his brother’s store but what he really wants is land, the very land that was denied him back in Ireland as no Catholic Irish could ever own anything.

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He eventually wins a plantation in a poker game and spends a long time building it up and having it be one of the richest ones in the area. He then decides to marry, but while these Southern families enjoy his wealth and propsperity; none could ever think of marrying their daughter to an Irish immigrant who’s family is unknown. The only thing for him to do is try to find a woman somewhere else, as he returns to his brother for help in finding a bride.

Yes, most don’t realize this but the wealthy South wanted to be like the old manors of Europe. Be the master of the land with pure bloodlines of other wealthy families, not bringing any low class in, and very racist against any that weren’t established in their group. This kind of racism against the Irish and Catholics went much farther than the South and was seen all over the country. Many times Irishmen and women had the lowest class jobs, found it hard to get land and keep it, and found themselves competing against African Americans who would work for lower wages (in the North). While Gerald O’Hara does extremely well, a lot of Irish weren’t able to ever reach that, especially in the South at this time.

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B) Scarlet O’Hara

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Scarlett is a Southern women in the Antebellum period and has very little schooling. All that is expected of her is to marry well and have plenty of children. But Scarlet has always felt different and out of touch with the time she lives in.

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She is extremely intelligent and has great business acumen. In fact it is often remarked that if her brain had been born into a boy she would have been able to go far.

Scarlet doesn’t have life easy either. With the Civil War she finds herself becoming a nurse, a midwife, and eventually has to take on the plantation or risk starvation. Because of those experiences it makes her hard, as with the book we see how she is constantly worried if things will turn out alright, if they can make it, or if they will be back to starvation; everyone looking at her to take care of everything.

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That is an incredible burden to be laid on a teenager (as she is about 17 or 18), let alone one who’s education was “how to look her prettiest”. She becomes tough because if she doesn’t, none of them will survive.

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When the home is attacked, she defends it shooting the deserter and protecting the home and people.

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Now she does steal her sister’s boyfriend, so she has faults, but she does it because she has foresight none of the others do. He has a hardware store, but when Scarlet takes over she also creates a lumber mill, triples the money, and is able to provide for everyone. Even though she accomplishes all this everyone still tells her she isn’t being a lady, running businesses and doing better than her husband. They try to convince her to stop, but she keeps on doing it. Using her “ladies mind” which contains a powerful way with numbers.

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She continues to be this strong, forceful woman throughout the rest of the novel; even though she does make a lot of bad personal decisions. Still, for a woman in the 1800s to have her own business, earn her own money, choose who she will marry (several times), is pretty awesome! She is a powerhouse of a character.

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C) Not as Racist as People Think

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People had slaves and if a book mentions it, that is not racist. In fact in this book the slaves aren’t really shown to be stupid, slow, or other clichés; except Lettie who is mentally disabled (something we understand more now than we did then). There is the house slave who didn’t want to work in the fields, but being a house slave was seen as better than an outdoor slave and slaves on the inside often treated the field slaves as being lower class.

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In fact this book isn’t racist to African Americans, but points out racism and hypocrisy that African Americans faced from those who were trying to free them. It is often remarked that while the North wanted the Southern slaves to be free, that did not mean they actually wanted to work with those freed slaves or have them near. There were plenty of racist people living in the North fighting for African American rights, but if they were near an African American they would still treat them cruelly. Mitchell points this out when the new Republicans brought in by Reconstruction say they would never have an African American nanny their children as they have “diseases” and “uncouth ways”. In fact they would much rather ship over an Irish immigrant than ever let their child be touched by someone black.

What jerks

What jerks

Many say that Mitchell started this “Mamie” stereotype  creating a myth that all Africans were pleased with being slaves; which Mitchell does not do. Like The Help, which by the way everyone loved and praised, she shows that because the nannies lived in the house and raised the children they sometimes became like family. It didn’t happen with everyone, but in this case Mamie was a mother to Scarlet more than her own mother.

Also people are all different and have their own views, even if they live in the same area. Mitchell presents a look at the many ways people regarded slavery; indifferent as Scarlet, necessary as Mr. O’Hara; and how some treat African Americans rudely, cruelly, or like family.

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D) The Person You Love are Not Always True

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Scarlet is in love with Ashley Wilkes, but they could never marry as her blood (Irish) is too inferior for the Wilkes family. He is to marry none other than his cousin, but instead of flat out saying that to Scarlett, Ashley likes how this beautiful woman who everyone wants loves him and leads Scarlett on, trying to make sure her “flames of love kept burning” because it made him feel good. He was such a jerk and a coward! I mean we’ve all had guys like that who say “they would make the commitment”, but their life isn’t quite together yet. They haven’t reached their plans. And then when you try to move on, they always snag you back, bemoaning that if only things were different; trying to get you to wait for them.

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They get their poisonious hook into you and keep you.

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My friend was in the snare of a guy like Ashley for three years. He would go on about how they couldn’t be together, she deserved someone better; but as soon as she started to move on or see other people he would pop in about how much he cared about her. Constantly stringing her along in this cycle.

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Thankfully she finally realized it or she would have been like Scarlett constantly pining after something she thought she needed when the real prize laid before her. It is horrible, and this book really teaches you the errors of being stuck on someones hook.

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E) Stop Looking to the Past

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Like most people, Scarlett gets stuck in the past. All she can do is think of Ashley and wish of Ashley.

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How many of us have had a broken heart and instead of realizing how that person wasn’t right and deciding to move on, we cling to the past dreaming, wishing hoping. How many of us waste our time like Scarlett?

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Scarlett was so consumed with her dreams and thoughts of the past that she was blind to the person who really loved her, that if she had only let her dream of Ashley die and stop mooning about him she would have seen how much better Rhett was for her.

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F) Never Be afraid to Say How You Feel

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Everyone talks about Scarlett’s blindness and how she was unable to see what she has but you know who was a real coward? Rhett! Rhett never told her he loved her until the very end. Maybe if he had not been so afraid to admit his real feelings and told her the truth about how he felt instead of distancing himself for the fear of her breaking his heart or lording over him, then they might have had a chance at true happiness.

Yes it can be hard to be vulnerable, or share your heart with others. Things can go very wrong of the person doesn’t care. But they can go just as bad of you say nothing and let the person you love pass you on by.

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G) Hold On to Tomorrow

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As Little orphan Annie says, “So you got to hang on ’til tomorrow, come what may!” Even after all she’s been through, Scarlett has an optimism that seems to go against everything else about her. She has faith that in tomorrow things can change. Life is hard now but in the flip of a dime it could turn out better. This kind of optimism we should instill in our life as well. Anything could happen tomorrow, don’t give up as things can get better.

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To start the 30 day challenge from the beginning, go to It Was a Pleasure to Burn: Fahrenheit 451

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For more on Gone With the Wind, go to At the End of the Rainbow: 17 More Irish Heroes

For more on Margaret Mitchell, go to I Will Survive

For more Ayn Rand quotes, go to The Power is Yours

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Today’s carol is O Little Town of Bethlehem. Phillip Brooks visited Bethlehem in 1865 and three years later wrote the poem, asking his organist Lewis Redner to write the music.

“As Christmas of 1868 approached, Mr. Brooks told me that he had written a simple little carol for the Christmas Sunday-school service, and he asked me to write the tune to it. The simple music was written in great haste and under great pressure. We were to practice it on the following Sunday. Mr. Brooks came to me on Friday, and said, ‘Redner, have you ground out that music yet to “O Little Town of Bethlehem”? I replied, ‘No,’ but that he should have it by Sunday. On the Saturday night previous my brain was all confused about the tune. I thought more about my Sunday-school lesson than I did about the music. But I was roused from sleep late in the night hearing an angel-strain whispering in my ear, and seizing a piece of music paper I jotted down the treble of the tune as we now have it, and on Sunday morning before going to church I filled in the harmony. Neither Mr. Brooks nor I ever thought the carol or the music to it would live beyond that Christmas of 1868.”

Amazing. Now it is famous and such a part of the festive year. My favorite version is the Nat King Cole one.

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For more Christmas carols, go to We Wish You A Merry Christmas

You Put the Ex in Extinct

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29) Things You Want to Say to an Ex

Sorry about the messy posting. I went out of town and didn’t have everything as prepared as I would have liked it. Oh well.

So I don’t really have anything to say to my current ex.

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He was a jerk. And I don’t care about him anymore.

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And that’s all I have to say on that. I’ve completely moved on.

Over You

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To start the 30 Day Challenge from the beginning, go to Musical Madness

For the previous post, go to I Call A Do-Over

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For more on my ex, go to The Final Chapter

You’re My Hero: Why Did I Get Married? (2007)

Romantic Moment #9

Why did I get Married

Why Did I Get Married? (2007)

Why Did I Get Married? is a film directed by and starring Tyler Perry. Just like Diary of a Mad Black Woman, this film is based on his play of the same name.

This film is about four couples, all friends from college, who are going on their annual retreat to not only work on their marriage but catch up on what’s been going on in each other’s lives.

  • The first couple is the over-worked, lawyer Dianne (Sharon Leal) and her husband Dr. Terry (Tyler Perry). The two have been arguing because Dianne didn’t want to time off from work to go on the retreat. In fact she doesn’t want to take off ANY time for anything. He hardly ever sees her or spends time with her. She is hardly involved with their daughter as well as she is always working. Terry wants more kids, but not only is Dianne hardly ever around, but when she is, she is too tired to have sex with him
  • Then we have Angela (Tasha Smith) and Marcus (Michael Jai White). Marcus used to be a famous football player and has two kids with another woman. He married Angela and helped finance her first beauty salon of which he now works at. She has gone to make tons of money, including created her own line of hair products. These two are constantly arguing.
  • Then we have perfect Patricia (Janet Jackson) and her husband Gavin (Malik Yoba). Patricia is a professor and author of the hit book Why Did I Get Married? Everything seems great about them, except the two are a bit stilted.
  • Lastly we have the overweight Sheila (Jill Scott) and her rude, arrogant, jerk of a husband Mike (Richard T. Jones). They are taking a flight to the retreat, taking along their friend Trina (Denise Boutte). Yes, bringing a single girl to a couples retreat? Like that’s not odd. Anyways, Sheila doesn’t fit in her seat, and Trina tries to give hers up, but Mike kicks her off the plane and tells her to drive there.

While there Dianne falls asleep alone, ignoring Terry. Her assistant calls and Terry tells her to leave them alone for the week as Dianne is on vacation. Angela and Marcus are fighting again and he asks Terry for help with something. That night Mike is seen, by Angela, sneaking into Trina’s room. Sheila was heading to Colorado but the night was was too dark and snowy, so she pulls off on the side of the road. There Troy (Lamman Rucker), the sheriff, spots her and brings her to the station to spend the night.

The next day Sheila arrives at the retreat and brings Troy to get with Trina, upsetting Mike. They invite Troy to dinner and that’s when all hell breaks loose.

  • It turns out that Dianne had her tubes tied as she doesn’t want anymore kids. She never told Terry as he wants more. She has been avoiding having sex as she doesn’t want to tell him about it.
  • Dianne also found out that Terry had a DNA test done on his daughter as he wasn’t sure she was really his. Dianne is always busy, so he was wondering if she really got pregnant by someone else.
  • Marcus has been cheating on Angela with his ex-girlfriend, and thought he got a STD from her.
  • Angela cheated on Marcus, with Walter, got an STD, and gave it to Marcus.
  • Gavin blames Patricia for the death of their son.
  • Patricia still blames herself for the death of their son.
  • Mike is cheating on Sheila with Trina.

Everyone tries to fix their mistakes, but Mike wants a divorce. Sheila becomes upset with Mike and whaps him on the head.

After that they all go their separate ways. Sheila stays in town with sheriff Troy, as he gets her a job at the general store. All the remaining couples go through a lot of changes and discussions to find out why did they get married? And do they want to stay married?

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***Most Romantic Moment***

So after the whole finding out your husband was cheating on you with your best friend, along with all the abuses he laid on you throughout the years- Sheila was having a really bad time. Troy is really there for her, providing her with a job and a place to stay while she goes through a divorce and has to figure out what to do with her life now. In fact, the two begin an amazing friendship and at one point Troy wants it to move to dating, but Sheila says no. She is scared since he made everything so much better in her life, that she is falling in love with him for his help only. Troy agrees, and the two decide to take it slow, a little at a time.

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Isn’t that amazing! He is so perfect and just perfect for her! He doesn’t care about her past and he sees all the good in her, past the insecurities and her inhibitions.

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She gets strong, moves along, and finds the perfect man of her dreams.

Why did I get married

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To start Romance is in the Air: Part III from the beginning, go to I Can See Your Beauty: The Breakfast Club (1985)

For the previous post, go to Love Makes You Do Crazy Things: Hercules (1997)

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For more on Why Did I Get Married, go to Part VIII: The Little Movie Line List

For more Tyler Perry, go to What Have We Done to Each Other?: Gone Girl (2014)

For more of my favorite quotes, go to You Look Beautiful Just the Way You Are: How to Marry a Millionaire (1953)

For more films based on a play, go to The Perfect Murder: Dial “M” for Murder (1954)

I Was Here For A Moment. And Then I Was Gone: The Lovely Bones (2009)

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“My name is Salmon, like the fish. First name: Susie. I was 14 years old, when I was murdered, on December 6, 1973. I was here for a moment. And then I was gone.”

So when this film came out in 2009, I really wanted to see but couldn’t find anyone to come with. Nobody seemed interested, and those that were had already seen it. I decided that I would wait to watch it until after I had read the book it was based on.

So that happened much later than I thought it would. At first everyone wanted to read it so it was hard to get a copy, and then I got busy reading other things.

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Anyways, so last month I went to a library book sale and discovered The Lovely Bones on sale for 50¢. Never being one to turn down a deal I bought it and immediately read it. It was different than I thought it would be as we learn the identity of the murder immediately. It was still a suspenseful book and interesting as we see how Susie Salmon’s disappearance affects her and the rest of her family. The other really interesting thing about this book is it really shows the changes that have come along since the ’70s regarding how police work and the forensics that we have. Not to mention criminal profiling.

So, back to the film. While the book is more of a suspense/horror/drama; but the film is mostly a drama with veins of suspense. The film was pretty good although they had to make a lot of changes. Mostly it had to do with cutting as the book is really long and spans about 10 years. The film only covers about a year-18 months. But the film was pretty good otherwise, and I recommend it.

So as mentioned earlier, Susie Salmon is a fourteen year old girl who gets murdered. At first she is presumed missing, and the police begin to investigate. The film details how her disappearance and lack of closure affect her family-father, mother, sister, brother, and grandma; along with friends and the community.

So this is what made the film great.

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Ready?

1. The Artistry/Cinematography

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The film is mostly in wide angle shots and they are set up beautifully. As the film is told in flashbacks or from the viewpoint of the spirit of Susie; it works really well. Not only are the regular shots extremely beautiful; but the scenes of heaven/limbo are extremely amazing and artistic. You really get the feeling that you are in a a place created by a child’s mind (as it is supposed to be what Susie wants).

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2. Susie

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Susie is played by Saoirse Ronan and does a really great job at being a fourteen year old kid. She really makes you believe it as she is shy when a boy likes her, sassy and trying to “rebel” against parents, showing she is moving toward becoming more adult, while at the same time still being very much a kid. You really feel for her as she wants to move on to heaven and a better life, but doesn’t want to leave her family or the boy she cared for.

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3. Mark Wahlberg as Jack Salmon

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Mark Wahlberg plays Jack Salmon the father who we adore and wouldn’t mind having. Jack is a caring father that has a really close bond to his children, often being the one they go to as their mother (Rachel Weisz) resents the life she lives. He has an incredibly close bond with Susie, not only because she is the oldest, but they have a lot in common. In fact, she is the only one who enjoys the model ship building he does. When he loses her, he falls apart trying to discover who the murderer is. He also works overtime trying to be there for his other kids. He never gives up, as he can’t just have his daughter disappear. Even when his wife leaves, he continues trying to care for his family and preserve his daughter’s memory. He faces the issue and problems straight on, while his wife runs away. When his wife comes back, he welcomes her back with open arms as he never stopped loving her. He is an amazing father, and you really feel for him and everything he goes through. What makes this performance even more amazing was that Wahlberg only joined the crew a day before filming actually started, knowing next to nothing about the story.

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4. Stanley Tucci as Mr. Harvey

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Stanley Tucci deserved his oscar nomination and should have won for his performance.I mean anyone who could go from this

to this:

definitely deserves an Oscar.

Every time we see him chills run up and down my spine, he is soooooooooo creepy.

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You should definitely check this film out.

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To start Horrorfest III from the beginning, go to Even a Man Pure of Heart

For the previous post, go to Keep Clear of the Moor. Beware the Moon

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For more film based on a book, go to What Is This Thing?

For more on Mark Wahlberg, go to At the End of the Rainbow

For more of my fav quotes, go to You Think You Know Something, Don’t You?

For more bookish posts, go to Opening With…

Here I Go

Clint

 

Well here I go, the second to last post on our “Getting Over a Heartbreak” list:

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30) Here I Go by Relient K

So here we are, another Relient K song. I think if you look at the whole list you’ll see a majority of the songs are either Journey or Relient K. I can’t help it! That’s what I was digging after my break up.

So the reason why I put this second to last on my “Getting Over a Heartbreak” series, was that I thought It really expressed how one feels after you have been through everything and are 100% over that other person.

Over You

But over in the sense that you aren’t angry, you don’t care about that other person, you have completely moved on and are just focusing on what is coming next in your life. Enjoying being yourself and being alive. Here I Go!

Yeah!
Oh, believe me I have tried
to work this out from the inside
then I finally realized I need to move on with my life

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Gotta make something happen
not just sit around and wait for it
this place is like a prison I think I’m going to have to make a break for it
whoa-o here I go it’s like I made it for the first time
whoa-o here I go and I think it’s the first time I felt alive

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Yeah! Alive!
I’ve been so depressed I’ve been let down
been pushed aside been pushed around
there’s one thing that I need
something you can’t take from me

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Gotta make something happen
not just sit around and wait for it
this place is like a prison I think I’m going to have to make a break for it
whoa-o here I go it’s like I made it for the first time
whoa-o here I go and I think it’s the first time I felt alive
whoa-o here I go it’s like I made it for the first time
whoa-o here I go and I think it’s the first time I felt alive

Move up, move on
you blink I’m gone
we only have one life to live
I’ll live it now
you have no doubt
I’ll prove you wrong
this is the only thing that I know
so here I go

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[Chorus]
whoa-o here I go it’s like I made it for the first time
whoa-o here I go and I think it’s the first time I felt alive
whoa-o here I go it’s like I made it for the first time
whoa-o here I go I think it’s the first time I felt alive.

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Forget the past

let go past

Live your life

LiveLife

After all:

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Most important:

BelieveinYourself

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To start the “Getting Over a Heartbreak” series rom the beginning, go to If It Means A Lot to You

For the previous post, go to Unbound

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For more on Relient K, go to The Lining is Silver

For more on Clint Eastwood, go to I’ll Be Alright Without You

For more on Seventh Day Slumber, go to Gone Forever

For more on my fav songs, go to Treat Her Right

For more on Boy Meets World, go to I Only Answer to the Name of Oommmooooowwwwo!

For more on believing in yourself, go to Any Way You Want It

For more of my favorite quotes, go to Part IX: Adventures in Movie Lines

Here I Go Again

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So here we go again. Yes here we go again…

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Couldn’t resist

So those of you who don’t know, those are lyrics from the song.

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So here we go again, another post on our “Getting Over a Heartbreak Series”.

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22) Here I Go Again by Whitesnake

Now if I had to pick my favorite song, absolutely had to pick one it would be this one. I love this song so, so, so, so, so much.

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This is the song that has gotten me through everything. Any horrible events, broken friendships, break ups, moving, and making any drastic changes. It always helps empower me and make me feel like I can get through anything.

The song came out in 1982, but then was re-recorded and released in 1987. The 1987 version is the one I love. It was number one on the Billboard Hot 100 and number 17 on VH1‘s 100 Greatest Songs of the ’80s.

The song was written by  the lead singer, David Coverdale, and former Whitesnake guitarist, Bernie Marsden

I just feel that this song is absolutely amazing! I cannot stress that enough. I included it at this point in the breakup list as I feel it goes perfectly after the last song. Here you are going on with your life. Here you go on your own. You are making a vow to not wasting anymore time moping and crying. Here I go again. 🙂

I don’t know where I’m going
But, I sure know where I’ve been
Hanging on the promises
In songs of yesterday
An’ I’ve made up my mind,
I ain’t wasting no more time
But, here I go again
Here I go again

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Tho’ I keep searching for an answer,
I never seem to find what I’m looking for
Oh Lord, I pray
You give me strength to carry on,
‘Cos I know what it means
To walk along the lonely street of dreams

brokenhearted

HereIGoAgainWhitesnake

An’ here I go again on my own
Goin’ down the only road I’ve ever known,
Like a drifter I was born to walk alone
An’ I’ve made up my mind
I ain’t wasting no more time

hereIgoagainWhitesnake

I’m just another heart in need of rescue,
Waiting on love’s sweet charity
An’ I’m gonna hold on
For the rest of my days,
‘Cos I know what it means
To walk along the lonely street of dreams

HereIGoAgainWhitesnake

An’ here I go again on my own
Goin’ down the only road I’ve ever known,
Like a drifter I was born to walk alone
An’ I’ve made up my mind
I ain’t wasting no more time

But, here I go again,
Here I go again,
Here I go again,
Here I go…

An’ I’ve made up my mind,
I ain’t wasting no more time

An’ here I go again on my own
Goin’ down the only road I’ve ever known,
Like a drifter I was born to walk alone
‘Cos I know what it means
To walk along the lonely street of dreams

An’ here I go again on my own
Goin’ down the only road I’ve ever known,
Like a drifter I was born to walk alone
An’ I’ve made up my mind
I ain’t wasting no more time…

But, here I go again,
Here I go again,
Here I go again,
Here I go,
Here I go again…

And I have to say that I also absolutely love the version by Rock of Ages.

Remember:

HotMess

Because:

whatyoudontwanttogetwhatyoudo

Go on along the road:

pathinlife

And above all remember:

behappy

musicnotes

To start the “Getting Over a Heartbreak” series from the beginning, go to If It Means A Lot to You

For the previous post, go to I Don’t Wanna Be in Love (Dance Floor Anthem)

musicnotes

For more ’80s songs, go to Missing You

For more of my fav songs, go to Over You

For more on Audrey Hepburn, go to Women in Black

For more on James Joyce, go to Good or Bad

For more on Mandy Hale, go to But It’s Alright

For more on Rock of Ages, go to Nothing But a Good Time