Monday, December 12, 2011

Liz's Mix Volume 9: Discoveries from 2011

One of my favorite holiday traditions began about 7 years ago when my friend from high school moved to England. At the time, I was in Philly being completely inundated with the indie music scene. We both shared a love for music and would make each other a mixed CD of music we had discovered while on either our travels in Europe or the warehouses of North Philly. Despite the later opportunities to easily shoot a you-tube link over in mid-discovery, we continued to send each other a tangible CD every year around the holidays. We have similar taste in music, so receiving each other's album gathered over the course of a year is like reliving that magic moment of discovery in one sitting. Tonight, I don't feel like writing the novel, and this kid in the cafe is sharing an awe-inspiring iTunes library (thanks "killer hip hop" from Earthmatters Cafe), so I've decided to put together my music discoveries of 2011. I have to admit, this year I'm playing catch up, as many of these songs are from a few years ago, but they each tell a story. I'm not going to tell it. The beauty of music is that I get to write less.

The List:
1. Never Give Up - Robin Thicke
2. Te Mando Flores - Fonseca
3. Vocal Chords - Dale Earnhardt Jr. Jr.
4. Through the Roof - Gogol Bordello
5. Mi Primer Millon - Bacilos
6. Inevitable - Shakira
7. The Broads - Minotaur Shock
8. Hold You - Gyptian
9. Obsesion - Aventura
10. Best Thing I Never Had - Beyonce
11. No I/ Ain Ani - Fools of Prophecy
12. Vanished - Crystal Castles
13. Take off Your Cool - Outkast (feat. Norah Jones)
14. Brother John/ Iko Iko - The Neville Brothers
15. Lucha De Gigantes - Nacha Pop
16. Bring on the Wonder - Susan Enan
17. Eterna Soledad - Los Enanitos Verdes
18. Ciega, Sordomuda - Shakira
19. Lamento Boliviano - Los Enanitos Verdes

Thanks Pandora, indie flicks, primetime dramas, WERS and my obsession with learning Spanish through music lyrics.

Do Christians need the promise of an afterlife to be good people on earth?

Can’t I be a good person, not because I am expecting eternal life in return, but because I just want to be a good person? Sure I have my day-to-day struggles in my attempts to live like Christ. In a world where cutting in line and cheating to get ahead are the norm, I sometimes walk away questioning why I make things harder for myself through these honest yet hard choices. But the idea of “suffer now, go to heaven later” has never entered my mind. In fact, the more that I give blindly without expecting something in return, the better I feel, so much that knowing that I did something right, whether it benefited me or someone else is reason enough to continue doing it.

Now, how can I take this thought and relay it to those who challenge my belief in God and heaven? I want to tell them about how Christ lived and how contagious love can be when transferred blindly from one to another. I want to say, yes, I believe in God and an afterlife and I’m looking forward to it, but one’s decision to be kind to others on earth is irrelevant to whether or not I think I’m going to heaven, so not believing is no excuse to be dishonest or hateful toward anyone.

Be good, because you want that for the rest of the world. Be fair, because you want everyone to have a fair shot. And be honest, because you want to hear the truth. You might not get this completely in return, in fact, you won’t, but as many times as you give kindness, someone else will receive it.