"The Weakness in Me," Joan Armatrading

Monday, May 21, 2012

source: Joan Armatrading's MySpace
Out of the blue, "The Weakness in Me" by Joan Armatrading popped into my head this past week. It's not a song I have on my iPod or hear or think about frequently or even infrequently, so it was an odd occurrence for me. Immediately, my mind went to the teen flick "10 Things I Hate About You." It was my favorite teen movie for a very long time, until "For Keeps" took its place. It has an incredible soundtrack, really good for a teen movie, and "The Weakness In Me" is used at one of the film's turning points. It's stuck with me since.

Like so many songs I first heard as a child or a young teen, it's not until I give the song a closer listen that I realize it's not just a pretty melody or a sorrowful voice. Although I love this song for the deep sadness conveyed through Joan Armatrading's voice, I also think it's an extremely selfish song, though I think most times, selfish songs are some of the truest songs. And of course, it's all about perspective.

My favorite line at 14 is the same line I still love now, and that's the opening: "I'm not the sort of person who falls / in and quickly out of love." I also really like the chorus, "Why do you come here when you know I've got troubles enough / Why do you call me when you know I can't answer the phone?" The gravity in her voice is so fresh, it's as if she recorded it as she wrote it.

I still haven't a clue what triggered this song to become lodged in my head, but here it is, and I hope you enjoy it:


And the unforgettable (to me, at least) scene from "10 Things I Hate About You":

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