It’s taken my subconscious until now, when we’re knocking on Christmas’s door, to realize that something’s amiss re: this fabulous LA weather. “Meg!” it’s begun asking. “What’s different? It’s December 19th — why don’t you feel like killing yourself? Why haven’t you gained ten pounds and blown the crotch out of a pair of sweatpants yet? Why are you still engaging in human contact as though you’re not going to shun the outside world for the next three to five months?”
Without “the fucking cold” topping my list of Reasons To Be Depressed, I’ve found myself scrambling to fill the vacancy. “My inevitable death” and “will never be as pretty as Heather Locklear” just aren’t cutting it without winter’s dreary backdrop in the mix.
That said, I’m fully aware that non-LA portions of the country are in the throes of early winter’s oppressive grasp, with its awful snow and despicable ice and bullshit single-digit temperatures. I’d feel like a dick if I only reveled in my good fortune, so I thought it’d be empathetic of me to share some of my favorite songs about the cold, either literal or figurative. Mostly figurative, because songs about weather don’t really sell unless they’re Christmas songs, and this compilation is not about celebrating the cold. It’s about detesting the cold with every bone in your body, a body which feels as though it may never be warm again.
AFI – “Silver and Cold”
I’m pretty sure I’m the least emo person I know, but this song gets me every time. Like winter, “Silver And Cold” is on the bleak side, but behind that dreariness lies a touchingly romantic sentiment: a vow that when Judgment arrives, he’ll bear the burden of her sin. You’ve got to admit that’s some heavy shit, no matter how you feel about the guy’s haircut.
Foreigner – “Cold as Ice”
She’s got a nor’easter in her veins, and she’s just as unforgiving. “Cold As Ice” may be the ultimate anthem against the cold, mostly because it’s so satisfying to shriek, “You’re as COOOLD AS ICE!” upon those opening measures. Take heed, native Californians and other meteorologically blessed folk: the “she” he speaks of is one rotten bitch, and the worst lament he can make is to compare her to the weather. That’s because, as you may have pieced together by now, cold weather sucks canal water.
Rainbow – “Stone Cold”
“Stone Cold” is Rainbow’s answer to “Cold As Ice,” much in the way that post-Dio Rainbow themselves were an answer to Foreigner. Sounds like they were familiar with the same woman, too; “Stone Cold” is a near-replica of “Cold As Ice,” only with brilliantly ad-libbed lyrical additions such as “you put me in the deep freeze.”
Paula Abdul – “cold Hearted”
Can we please take a moment to acknowledge what an absolute phenomenon Paula Abdul was? I’m not being sarcastic. Watch the video. Listen to that song. Drink in that choreography. The song’s essentially hammering the same nails as “Cold As Ice” and “Stone Cold,” but with the kind of attitude that only a late-’80s Paula Abdul can bring. Forget the weather — this song gives me chills that have nothing to do with the cold.
Tone Loc – “Funky Cold Medina”
Well, Paula Abdul done got me in the mood for dancing. I’m tired of forcing myself to imagine the dank, miserable winter anyhow. It’s eighty degrees outside, for crying out loud. For those less fortunate than I, never fear: “Funky Cold Medina” is guaranteed to raise the temperature wherever you find yourself, particularly once you start shaking that ass. Get sweaty. Melt the frost right off those windows. The power of Tone Loc compels you.
Whether you’re cursing God and global warming in the East or offering sacrifices of thanks to your weatherman in the West, at least you’ll always have the hits to keep you warm. That, and the back of your laptop. And your jacked-up phone battery. And your burning athlete’s foot. And your hot breath. Stay warm!