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Music in the Shower??- Anna Patchefsky

Trying to persuade my parents that everyone plays music in the shower was a Sisyphean task: my friends would nod their head in agreement when prompted after a parent barged in on FaceTime, but then I’d blast Stacy’s Mom at 11:30 pm, waking up my sister, re-solidifying their initial belief that I was an anomaly, and I’d have to start all over again (maybe this time with the more palatable Beatles instead). It was not until my parents connected with other parents and promptly exclaimed, “Oh my, how good kids these days have it!” did they understand that shower music is a cultural cornerstone of both amateur DJ-ing and of awkward shower mishaps.

Most of my friends have a shower playlist: an infinite curation of upbeat tunes ranging from Toto’s Africa to fan favorites like Mr. Brightside and Bob Marley’s One Love. It is a playlist made for a top of the lung and shampooed hair performance. But, more often than not, these types of playlists are filled with annoying ear-worms, heard too often and cause for much annoyance. The tunes are the same ones that you’d hear at any Boomer’s New England bonfire (for example, it is a fact that Sweet Caroline is on every single shower playlist). All this is to say, that oftentimes Shower Songs, like any song you’ll hear on a Top 40 station, are overplayed. This time, it’s just your own mix of tunes, not Billboard’s.

Knowing this, my shower playlist is unused. Instead, every time I take shower, whether it’s in the morning or at night, whether I’m procrastinating on homework or in dire need of cleanse, I put all 1,402 of my liked songs on shuffle. I don't use any specific playlist. By choosing musical chaos, for those ten (or sometimes twenty) minutes I am letting my emotions be spontaneous. By responding to my shuffle, I am more present in those moments than if I had put on a playlist titled Shower Songs or Sad Anna.

Nonetheless, whether you’re listening to a shower playlist or your entire music library, skipping a song is an embarrassing ritual. For me, it happens like this: First, Taylor Swift’s The Story of Us plays, and deciding that I like it for the moment I let all 4 minutes and 28 second of it play. Then Somebody Else by The 1975 comes on, and, well, that did not match the mood I had been feeling, so I decided to skip it. And then, I get that weird feeling when you have to change the song so you lean out of the shower. The one, where the water drips off of your finger, and you know you’ll only get a couple skips in before the water stops your phone from working. And then, you find the right song. After skipping past numerous compositions, for some reason I chose this one. I rushed back in the shower because I had gotten cold. But it is worth it: for the relief of the scorching shower but also because I got to listen to Wanna Get Better by The Bleachers.

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