The Winner Takes It All – ABBA

Every time I think of my high school, sweet and innocent, love affairs, and there have been quite a few, I remember this ABBA song. The English class teacher translate it for us, so there would no mistake that is really a sad song. In our youthful enthusiasm we might have missed that.
One of the most beautiful songs ever. Too bad people don’t seem to enjoy ABBA songs as much as we used to, back in the days of good music. Agnetha was back then in all the high school boys’ dreams, and we all dreamed of immigrating to Sweden some day. They say all women are blonde there. Who knows, I’ve never been to Sweden.

Lyrics:

I don’t wanna talk
About things we’ve gone through
Though it’s hurting me
Now it’s history
I’ve played all my cards
And that’s what you’ve done too
Nothing more to say
No more ace to play

The winner takes it all
The loser’s standing small
Beside the victory
That’s a destiny

I was in your arms
Thinking I belonged there
I figured it made sense
Building me a fence
Building me a home
Thinking I’d be strong there
But I was a fool
Playing by the rules

The gods may throw a dice
Their minds as cold as ice
And someone way down here
Loses someone dear
The winner takes it all
The loser has to fall
It’s simple and it’s plain
Why should I complain?

But tell me does she kiss
Like I used to kiss you?
Does it feel the same
When she calls your name?
Somewhere deep inside
You must know I miss you
But what can I say?
Rules must be obeyed

The judges will decide
The likes of me abide
Spectators of the show
Always staying low
The game is on again
A lover or a friend
A big thing or a small
The winner takes it all

I don’t wanna talk
If it makes you feel sad
And I understand
You’ve come to shake my hand
I apologize
If it makes you feel bad
Seeing me so tense
No self-confidence
But you see
The winner takes it all
The winner takes it all…

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It Started With A Kiss – Hot Chocolate

High school years. Saturday night, and we are all gathered in the cafeteria for our weekly dance night. The lights are low and everybody is having a good time. Our old Tesla tape recorder is hot like a stove but does its job of keeping the music rolling. And then, this song comes along, and all the boys are in panic mode. Where is the girl I want to dance with? This is the moment they all waited for, because there is no better song to dance with your girl.

A special thank to Martha that was always willing to lend us her technical wonder, the Tesla tape recorder.

tesla

Lyrics:

It started with a kiss in the back row of a classroom.
How could I resist the aroma of your perfume.
You and I were inseparable
It was love at first sight.
You made me promise to marry you
I made you promise to be my wife

But then you were only eight years old and I had just about turned nine.
I thought that life was always good
I thought you always would be mine.
It started with a kiss
Never thought it would come to this.
It started with a kiss
Never thought it would come to this.
I remember every little thing like fighting in the playground

As some good looking boy had started to hang around.
That boy hurt me so bad
But I was happy ’cause you cried. – still –
I couldn’t help but notice that new distant look in your eyes

And then when you were sixteen
And I had just turned seventeen

I couldn’t hold on to your love
I couldn’t hold on to my dreams.

It started with a kiss
Never thought is would come to this.
It started with a kiss
Never thought it would come to this.
You don’t remember me
Do you? You don’t remember me
Do you?
Walking down the street came the star of my love story

And my heart began to beat so fast
So clear was my memory.
I heard my voice cry out her name
And as she looked and looked away
I felt so hurt
I felt so small
And it was all that I could say

You don’t remember me
Do you? You don’t remember me
Do you?
You don’t remember me
Do you? You don’t remember me
Do you?
It started with a kiss
Never thought it would come to this.
It started with a kiss
Never thought it would come to this.

(Just Like) Starting Over – John Lennon

The day the music died, December 8th, 1980. I was home, for a short winter vacation from high school, and the news was all over radio and tv. I felt like crying, and I probably did a bit. Man cry too, after all, if it’s for a noble cause. And then I remember days on end, all the radio stations playing Starting Over, and we spent Christmas listening to it. It was much, much later that I got to understand the man, and the genius John Lennon was. If you’ve never seen it, watch the movie Imagine.

Here are some pictures I took couple of days ago, in New York City, his last home.

Imagine mosaic in Central Park’s Strawberry Fields:

imagine

The Dakota Apartments, South Entrance, where John was shot dead:

dakota

And Remember:
“It’s time to spread your wings and fly,
Don’t let another day go by.”

Lyrics:

Our life together is so precious together,
We have grown – we have grown,
Although our love is still special,
Let’s take a chance and fly away somewhere alone,

It’s been too long since we took the time,
No-one’s to blame,
I know time flies so quickly,
But when I see you darling,
It’s like we both are falling in love again,
It’ll be just like starting over – starting over,

Everyday we used to make it love,
Why can’t we be making love nice and easy,
It’s time to spread our wings and fly,
Don’t let another day go by my love,
It’ll be just like starting over – starting over,

Why don’t we take off alone,
Take a trip somewhere far, far away,
We’ll be together all alone again,
Like we used to in the early days,
Well, well, well darling,

It’s been so long since we took the time,
No-one’s to blame,
I know time flies so quickly,
But when I see you darling,
It’s like we both are falling in love again,
It’ll be just like starting over – starting over,

Our life together is so precious together,
We have grown – we have grown,
Although our love is still special,
Let’s take our chance and fly away somewhere.

Trenul Fara Nas – Iris

It’s time for a post about a band some used to call The Romanian AC/DC, and for a good reason. Sorry, non-english-speaking buddies, but this post is gonna be in romanian, so.

Cred ca nu multi dintre voi stiti, dar versurile melodiei ii apartin lui Adrian Paunescu si amintirile mele sint legate de Cenaclul Flacara, pe care am avut privilegiul sa-l vad la sala polivalenta din Cluj. A fost un adevarat delir cind Iris au inceput sa cinte si am reusit, eu si prietenul meu Dan, sa ajungem chiar in fata scenei. Cristi Minculescu s-a aplecat spre public la un moment dat si ne-am intins toti sa punem mina pe el, dar eu, fiind mai mic de statura n-am ajuns, si uite asa, am ramas cu un regret toata viata ca n-am putut sa pun mina pe Minculescu. Dan nu s-a mai spalat pe miini vreo saptamina dupa asta si a continuat sa ma tachineze tot timpul, ca eu n-am putut.

irisstage

Cristi Minculescu a fost fan al Universitatii Craiova, echipa mea de suflet (voi mai reveni intr-un alt post). Aici cu minunea din Banie, al doilea cel mai talentat jucator de fotbal al Romaniei (dupa Gicu Dobrin, bineinteles), Ilie Balaci (am avut sansa sa-l cunosc personal cind era in culmea gloriei, cu Campioana Unei Mari Iubiri – o alta poveste, intr-un alt post):

irisbalaci

Asa se cinta la chitara dupa o dusca de pepsi:

iriscola

In fine, am si o poveste cu nasul, unul adevarat, de pe un tren personal pe ruta Singeorz – Vatra Dornei. Eram cu niste colegi, intr-o vacanta cu o multime de peripetii, care mi-ar lua vreo zece postari sa le povestesc pe toate. Cum era normal, eram putin in lipsa de bani, si cind a venit nasul, ne facusem noi socoteala, ca fiind 5, ar trebui sa-i dam 50 de lei, dar am zis noi, ia sa incercam sa-i dam doar 40. Zis si facut, vine nasul la controlat bilete si era foarte vesel ca daduse peste un grup mai mare si ne intreba unde mergem si isi freca miinile fericit. Ii dam noi banii, ii ia si-i numara si zice, “Bai baieti, lipsesc 10 lei”. Ne uitam unii la altii, cam incurcati si n-avem ce sa facem, mai scoatem 10 lei si pleaca nasul multumit.
Nu-i vorba, ca ne-am scos pirleala cind am luat mocanita de la Turda la Abrud, iar nasul n-a a vrut sa ia banii la inceput, a zis ca lasa ca ne socotim la sfirsit, dar cind am ajuns la Abrud era ocupat si am plecat fara sa-i dam nici un ban. Calatoria cu mocanita a fost una dintre cele mai frumoase pe care le-am facut cu trenul. Mergea atit de incet, intreaga calatoria a durat vreo sase ore, incit ne coboram din mers inainte ca trenul sa opreasca in statie si adunam mere de prin livezi sa ne potolim foamea.

Am gasit citeva poze pe internet cu mocanita de Abrud. O adevarata incintare.

mocanita2 mocanita1

Trenul Fara Nas, si Pe Ape au ramas doua dintre cele mai bune piese ale trupei Iris, primite cu mult entuziasm de public la toate concertele Iris, fie ele din anii 80, sau 2010. O cariera remarcabila pentru una dintre cele mai bune trupe romanesti, alaturi de Phoenix, Celelalte Cuvinte, Sfinx, Semnal M, Compact si multe altele.

Versuri:

Urcam intru-un tren, trenul asta-i trenul nostru bun.
Ce vreti, zice el. N-avem nasule bilet ti-o spun.
Drumul vesnic ne e rostul. Treaca zile, treaca ani.
Asta este trenul nostru, trenul celor fara bani.

Din gari, vin mereu, vin cei tineri care au de mers.
Spre-acel ideal, ce din inima nu ni s-a sters.
Drumul vesnic ne e rostul. Treaca zile, treaca ani.
Asta este trenul nostru, trenul celor fara bani.

Drumul vesnic ne e rostul. Treaca zile, treaca ani.
Asta este trenul nostru, trenul celor fara bani.

Hei, hei, nasule. Da-te dumneata-ntr-o halta jos.
Noi vrem, liber tren, trenul nostru e un tren frumos.
Drumul vesnic ne e rostul. Treaca zile, treaca ani.
Asta este trenul nostru, trenul celor fara bani.

Drumul vesnic ne e rostul. Treaca zile, treaca ani.
Asta este trenul nostru, trenul celor fara bani.

Nu pot sa inchei acest post, fara sa adaug doua poezii memorabile (pe care le stiu pe de rost) ale lui Adrian Paunescu, una despre orasul meu de suflet, Cluj, iar cealalta despre sufletul oricarui copil.

Dor de Cluj

Sfios vin la tine ca-n templul Ardealului,
Eu, fiu de ţărani din fierbintele sud,
Şi Clujul e, tot, hohotire de clopote,
Şi paşii lui Blaga pe străzi se aud.
Ca Iancu aş vrea pe suişul Feleacului
Să cad furtunos peste Cluj ca un cal,
Dar astăzi e linişte dulce în inima
Prea mult pătimitului nostru Ardeal.
Acelaşi e Clujul, aceiaşi sunt oamenii,
Mereu născători şi mereu muritori,
Dar şi de-aş avea tot o singură naştere
Aici aş muri de o mie de ori.
Mereu către dealul ciudat al Feleacului
Atras mi-a fost neamul bătrân de oltean,
Aici învăţară ai mei, toate rudele,
Dumitru şi Ana şi Tina şi Ioan.
Când noaptea se lasă tresar amintirile
Şi trec literaţi spre un magic castel,
Ce seamănă Clujul în noapte cu creierul,
Un creier cu gânduri aprinse în el.
Şi ce n-a fost voie, şi clipele libere,
Şi ce-i mulţumire, şi ce e reproş
Se-adună nostalgic la cumpăna nopţilor
Când Blaga îşi murmură paşii sfioşi.
El trece spre moarte, în marea lui trecere
Şi e printre noi şi din nou printre duşi,
Sfios într-un Cluj ca în templul Ardealului,
Ce dor mi-e de Blaga, ce dor mi-e de Cluj!

Rugă pentru părinţi

Enigmatici şi cuminţi,
Terminându-şi rostul lor,
Lângă noi se sting şi mor,
Dragii noştri, dragi părinţi.
Chiamă-i, Doamne, înapoi
Că şi-aşa au dus-o prost,
Şi fă-i tineri cum au fost,
Fă-i mai tineri decât noi.
Pentru cei ce ne-au făcut
Dă un ordin, dă ceva
Să-i mai poţi întârzia
Să o ia de la început.
Au plătit cu viaţa lor
Ale fiilor erori,
Doamne, fă-i nemuritori
Pe părinţii care mor.
Ia priviţi-i cum se duc,
Ia priviţi-i cum se sting,
Lumânări în cuib de cuc,
Parcă tac şi parcă ning.
Plini de boli şi suferind
Ne întoarcem în pământ,
Cât mai suntem, cât mai sunt,
Mângâiaţi-i pe părinţi.
E pământul tot mai greu,
Despărţirea-i tot mai grea,
Sărut mâna, tatăl meu,
Sărut mâna, mama mea.
Dar de ce priviţi aşa,
Fata mea şi fiul meu,
Eu sunt cel ce va urma
Dragii mei, mă duc şi eu.
Sărut mâna, tatăl meu,
Sărut mâna, mama mea.
Rămas bun, băiatul meu,
Rămas bun, fetiţa mea,
Tatăl meu, băiatul meu,
Mama mea, fetiţa mea.

Ani De Liceu – Stela Enache, Florin Bogardo

This is a special request from a very special friend. It’s a song from a movie, Liceenii, that everyone loved back then, because it reminded us of the sweet high school years, and of our sweet and innocent high school friendships, that we later used to call love. Ah, the first kiss, the first walk, hand in hand on a dark street in the night, and the first movie seen next to a girl or a boy.

Timp nu fi hain
Sa mai fim liceeni, macar putin

For those of you who want to see the movie again, here is the link: Liceenii.

The school scenes were filmed at my wife’s high school while she was still in school, and she remembers boys in her class wanting to get autographs from Oana Sarbu. The outdoor scenes were filmed in a beautiful Bucharest park, Titan, very close to where I used to live, and where I used to go running very early in the morning. This is how it looks in some pictures I took some years back. Still beautiful, but a little more manicured than I would have liked it to be.

725 705 729 785

Lyrics (Romanian):

Timp, incotro mergi?
Spre ce meleaguri noi, grabit alergi?
Cum, poti intr-o zi
Sa schimbi in oameni mari niste copii?

Azi, in pod pitit
Sta ursuletul carn
Ieri mult iubit
Si, vrei ori nu vrei,
Anii de scoala, vezi, se duc si ei….

Ani de liceu cu emotii la romana
Scumpii ani de liceu cand la mate dai de greu
Ani de liceu cand tii soarele in mana
Si te crezi legendar Prometeu

Ani de liceu cand se-ntampla-o tragedie
Fiindca el te-a zarit la un film cu alt baiat,
Anii de liceu impletind cu poezie
Tot ce ai tu mai bun, mai curat…

Ani…ani de liceu

Timp nu fi hain
Sa mai fim liceeni, macar putin

Ani de liceu cu prietenii pe viata
Scumpii ani de liceu ti-i vei aminti mereu
Ani de liceu enigmatica prefata
La romanul ce e doar al meu

Ani de liceu cand in recreatia mare
Te ascunzi ca sa poti inc-o data repeta
Ani de liceu cand o ora un an iti pare
Fiindca stii ca te va asculta

Ani de liceu cu emotii la roamana
Scumpii ani de liceu cand la mate dai de greu
Ani de liceu cand tii soarele in mana
Si te crezi legendar Prometeu

Ani de liceu cand se-ntampla o tragedie
Fiindca el te-a zarit la un film cu alt baiat
Ani de liceu impletind cu poezie
Tot ce ai tu mai bun, mai curat…

Ani……ani de liceu…

On The Road Again – Barrabas

There are songs that, when you hear them, you just cannot sit down. You have to get up and dance, and dance, and dance some more, and this one is a good example. Every time it would play at those Saturday night dance parties that we would have in the school’s cafeteria, everyone would go crazy.
The band is from Spain, of all countries, and they were very popular in the late 70s, early 80s.
We used the name of the song as the motto of our last new year’s party as high school students. And we danced…

ontheroadagain

Lyrics:

Another way, another road
Another act, another show
Another love, another dream
Another song for us to sing.

There you are, here I am.
What can I do to make you mine?
It’d be so nice to be with you

To spend the night
On the road, on the road
On the road again

On the road, on the road
On the road again

We’re on the road, on the road
On the road again

On the road, on the road
On the road again
Here we go

Another way, another road
Another act, another show
Another love, another dream
Another song for us to sing.

Give me your time, give me your love
To get me ready to be yours.
It’d be so nice to be with you

To spend the night
On the road, on the road
On the road again

On the road, on the road
On the road again

We’re on the road, on the road
On the road again

On the road, on the road
On the road again
Here we go

Another way, another road
Another act, another show
Another love, another dream
Another song for us to sing.

There you are, here I am.
What can I do to make you mine?
It’d be so nice to be with you

To spend the night
On the road, on the road
On the road again

On the road, on the road
On the road again

We’re on the road, on the road
On the road again

On the road, on the road
On the road again
Here we go

Road, road, on the road again
Road, road, on the road again
Road, road, on the road again
Road, road, on the road again

Road, road, on the road again
Road, road, on the road again
Road, road, on the road again
Road, road, on the road again

Come on, come on, come on, huh, huh.