What I Live For (2020)

Blue October’s 10th studio album is about fighting for those you love, living with depression, and how marriage is actually work–not matter how long you’ve been together. Blue October continues to write personal & moving lyrics, focusing on the journey of living through depression.

(more…)

Proposal: Fight for Love

I did a surprise proposal, & it went surprisingly well. Here’s the song lyrics & words of my own that I used to propose to the love of my life, Rory:

Dear Rory,

There’s something I can’t quite explain: I’m so in love with you/You never take that away

You’re never second best,
you’re my one, completely

Where you go,
I will follow you.
Where you go,
I’m going too.

You’re the love of my life. I can’t believe how fast six years has flown by. It’s a long time that feels—honestly—like nothing at all.

I want to spend six more years by your side. I want to spend six decades with you.

You lift me up whenever I’m down. You help me laugh even when I’m sleepy. You’ve loved me through rainy, cloudy days & through sunny ones.

So,
I just want to know…Would you marry me?

Love,
MBB

[12.31.2020
edited 1.4.2021]

(more…)

Blue October’s Livestream Concert, Pt. 1

left to right: Ryan, Will, Justin, Jeremy, & Matt.

Last night, my sister and I popped some popcorn, grabbed my computer, and set up Blue October’s livestream concert. (I purchased a ticket earlier that day. The ticket I purchased allows me to view their concert again, which helped because I worked until 10 last night.)

(more…)

Advice for Dating Someone with Asperger’s

  1. I listen to his concerns, for what clothing issues he might have. Note: When you go clothes shopping, you let him pick out comfortable articles of pants and shirts.
  1. Dear Self: You can tell him when you’re tired of his rants (for example) about the gaming company AE. It’s okay. Don’t feel bad about needing to change the subject.
  2. He is smart, his experiences are valid, and he is loved by his family, friends, and (most importantly) by me.
  3. Your relationship may not move along as quickly as some, but he doesn’t stray. He loves you more deeply than you can imagine, deeper than any pool of water, stronger than any yarn I’ve knitted.
  4. Believe that he can do things, because he believes in you.
  5. Rory is special, because I’m special, too. I understand what it’s like to struggle with making friends, that being social can tire us both out.
  6. I have PDDNOS, which means that I’m on the autism spectrum, but don’t fit under the umbrella like someone with Asperger’s. I have autistic tendencies, I say, because it’s easier to explain. I’m passionate about Blue October, the novel A Little Life, LGBTQ+ rights and issues, and learning new knitting patterns. I can talk your ear off about any of my favorite subjects. Rory knows this, and he can do the same for video games, science, history, and psychology tidbits . (He’s gotten better about listening to the flow of our conversations since I first started dating him.)
  7. Love on the autism spectrum is magical, because you’re both unique. We’re both living unicorns, wild and free in the shimmering forest. We’re eating from the same rainbow cup of ice cream. We’re animated about our different passions: writing, reading, and gaming. You like the prettiness of video games, and I love the pretty knitting patterns I discover on YouTube. We both light up when we’re together, a halo of light ringing our bodies.

M.B.B.
6/29/2020

Notes: Every person with autism is different. Every experience with autism is different. Some are high-functioning, while some people just need more love and care navigating our crazy world. This is my personal experience with dating someone who has Asperger’s, a form of autism. I too am on the autism spectrum. Both Rory’s and my experiences are unique. We have mutual friends who are also on the autism spectrum. We get along really well! It’s important to spread awareness (even in today’s world) about autism. For example, autism is not caused by vaccines. This is a myth spread through fear tactics and misunderstanding of vaccines and what science can do for us as human beings. I’m on the autism spectrum because of my prematurity at birth. On the other hand, my boyfriend Rory wasn’t born premature and happens to also be on the autism spectrum. He is high-functioning. Thank you for taking the time to listen and to read my poem.

resting place

In my life, I’m busy:
Homework keeps me on my toes,
friends invite me to socialize & social events,
& the real world awaits.

But the mountains are calling, John Muir says,
& I must go,
the Misty Mountains are calling,
& dwarves are in my Hobbit hole.

The mountains, Misty or not, stand stock still,
as unshakeable as soldiers.
The streams gurgle,
the breeze whispers,
& the snow crunches like carrots underfoot.

There are so many things I must do:
I must prepare for my driver’s test,
& write a 400-word essay by tomorrow.
Showering isn’t a luxury: it will only take ten minutes.
My best friend is leaving for Washington, D.C.

The Sun does not hurry,
for it’s hot as hell below,
nor does it rise late upon Mount Sopris,
nor does the grass wither.
Remember, grass doesn’t grow like green piece of paper on trees.
Remember, life’s like a jump rope.

M.B.B.
2/12/15
edited 5/24/2020

Note: italicized pieces are from the works of Blue October, Les Miserables (the play), & a quote from John Muir is also included.

New Blue!

Blue October has released a new single called “This is What I Live For,” off of their upcoming tenth album of the same name. With a slower tempo, intimate lyrics, and strong beats, “This is What I Live For” is a solid single.

(more…)

Dear Justin

Dear Justin,

Thank you for your hug at my first Blue show. Thank you for signing my copy of An Open Book. It still means a lot to me. It was very sweet of you to hug me.

You’re one of the coolest and sweetest guys I know. I love your music because it’s helped me understand my depression and anxiety over the years. I love your music because you continue to lift me up daily. Your lyrics are insightful, powerful, and poetic. 

(more…)

Oh My My

Blue October has released a new single.

“Oh My My” is a narrative song about falling in love with someone. It’s catchy, fun, and cheerful. The speaker is a guy who has been struck dumb by the sight of a sad, but pretty, woman. He’s a “sucker for your oh my my”, her dangerous side, and promises to catch her when she falls. He hopes that she’ll return the favor.

I’m excited for Blue October’s new album What I Live For to drop. I love when they come out with new music!

Dear Willem

You compiled my life for me—
a spreading accordion of file folders labeled Jude I Jude II Jude III Jude IV bursting with awards, photos, certificates, love letters, JB’s art, & my legal documents

With you,
you shone like the Sun,
brightening the white-washed walls of our apartment

Your jumper cable arms
wound around me kept me safe
from the snarling dogs of my mental illness

I’m in denial.
I’m hardly living
in this hollowed-out shell of an apartment we called home
I’m a zombified shell of a man, wandering, without you

Why didn’t I just retire?
Why didn’t I just grit my teeth & endure sex?
Why didn’t I become a kept man
like you said, so we could travel together?
I’d cook for you,
I’d sing to you,
I’d hold you close.

I know why: Because I thought my work was my fucking life, my fingerprint on the world
I should’ve made more time for you
I should’ve stockpiled the sound of your voice,
the sandalwood perfume you wear,
& have a chemist bottle your very essence in a jar
I should’ve recorded our conversations,
snapped more pictures,
taken more videos of our life—
thirty-fucking-four years—together

I should’ve cared less about my crystalized past & cared more about the love you showed me in pointing out the monarch butterfly’s wings
I should’ve cared more about your mantra: I am Williem Ragnerson & I will never let you go

I should’ve counted my blessings:
my adoptive parents
my talented friends
rather than believe the lies my abusers told me
but their words leave their scars on my forearms

I should’ve asked for help.
I should’ve ignored the shit my fucked-up head told me,
but the hyenas keep skulking in the trees.
I should’ve realized that you give me a quiet mind

If I had to do it all over again,
I’d stop cutting earlier
I’d re-learn how to love myself
I’d go to therapy for all the abuse I suffered
I’d learn how to mistrust that little voice in my head
I’d listen to Andy, Harold, Julia, JB, Malcolm, & most of all you—
Willem, you cared more about me living than I ever did

I hope the shoot is going well
I miss you so much

Love,
Jude

M.B.B.
9/18/17
edited 5/1/2020

Note: italicized pieces are from A Little Life & Blue October’s “A Quiet Mind,” respectively. Other references to A Little Life are un-italicized.

The Answers (1998)

First albums make first impressions. The Answers, Blue October’s first album, is raw. If this album were a hand, the knuckles on the hand would have scrapped and raw skin. This debut album is an example of what it means to be young and living with mental illness. Weaving in narratives about family, lacking the ability to give yourself advice, and tales of depression, The Answers is a boxing glove that packs a punch.

(more…)

New Music Downloads

I do listen to other bands than just Blue October.

I love indie rap, Rammstein, Blind Guardian, Imogen Heap, Atmosphere, Dessa, Doomtree, and tons of scores by famous composers like John Williams, Philip Glass, and some up and coming composers, like Hildur Gudnadttir. I hadn’t heard of her until I watched the show Chernobyl which had me struggling to fall asleep without the lights on. What Hildur Gudnadttir does for music is thrilling, leaving you shivering with tingles from how powerful her music is. She’s a master at writing music, creating top-notch scores.

(more…)

19 Things from 2019

Hello, dear reader!

As I approach the New Year here in America, I want to look back on all the fun and fantastic things I did this year. As always, this year went by pretty fast. It doesn’t seem real that we’re already going to enter a new millennium. It all feels quite strange. I’m excited and a little nervous about the new decade to begin, but I’m sure I’m not alone in feeling this way.

In any case, I’m looking forward to a new decade, where I want bigger and better changes to happen in our world.

(more…)

Ten Years a Blue Fan!

In September, I quietly made it to ten years as a fan of Blue October’s music. I don’t listen to their music everyday, but when I do, I feel joy come over me. I’ve listened to their discography of rock and alternative music enough over the years that I’ve memorized most of their lyrics. I have favorites upon favorites in their catalogue of rock music. I’m excited when they come out with new music. Lately, Blue October’s sound has matured, talking about family, forgiving your exes, and enjoying life. Their sound overall–especially their dedication to creating music–is something that not everyone possesses these days.

(more…)

Blue October: October 7th, 2017

I beamed in front of the poster, which had Blue October’s name on it. I was finally going to see the band I loved so much play in the flesh. Visiting with fans of Blue October only made me more excited to see them. “You’ll cry,” one girl told me. “He’s amazing,” she added, talking about the charismatic lead singer, Justin Furstenfeld.

(more…)