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“The best music is essentially there to provide you something to face the world with.”
- Bruce Springsteen -

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

#91 Incident on 57th Street by Bruce Springsteen

“We may find it out on the street tonight baby

Or we may walk until the daylight maybe”

This past weekend, I watched the movie “Public Enemies”, an insightful portrayal of John Dillinger, the infamous bank robber from the 1930’s. Dillinger stoles thousands of dollars from banks and killed and kidnapped when deemed necessary. He was a criminal. He was bad. He was wanted.

And he was sensitive. He was an intelligent, perceptive soul who found a way to survive in a world where he would always find himself on the losing end no matter what kind of life he led. Any possibilities of second chances were taken from him at a young age. So, he played the game of life the only way he could protect himself, by going on the offense.

Spanish Johnny plays the game of life not unlike Johnny Dillinger. Some experience or insight into his life has led him to conclude that the way for his heart to survive an unforgiving world is to get his any way any how. The world was made of winners and losers, and he was “tired of coming out on the losing end”.

Johnny, in the midst of his darker world, finds himself touched by someone who understands him and who will love him probably better than anyone else has loved him in his life. Jane’s a kindred spirit who still carries the hope that Johnny lost long ago. She, too, can see the futility in the games of the world, but she also still dreams for something more, a world where they come out the winners. Johnny gives a small piece of himself to her. They carve themselves out a piece of quiet sadness within their weary worlds, but Johnny can’t jump in completely.

Love becomes something not worth taking a risk for because “it falls apart so easy and you know hearts these days are cheap”. No matter love’s promises, he can’t take the risk of losing once again. There are no guarantees they will “find it out on the street tonight”, find what they’re searching for. He can no longer make or keep promises to himself or to anyone else. He’ll share a moment but not a lifetime. He is safer risking his life rather than his heart.

…next stop for Johnny – Atlantic City….some hearts are not made for this world…

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