It isn't my favourite but, lyrically, this is the song by The Beach Boys that means the most to me. I remember listening to it and dreaming of a time when it would be true for me, in a way that only someone who passed adolescence in a house like mine could. I've never really understood people describing childhood and adolescence as the happiest time in life. For me, adolescence was a time of confusion and above all, powerlessness. This song was a dream, and not one related in any music of the time; that was all adults pretending to be teenagers, prancing around in things I'd have to have a cardigan over if I expected to leave the house, singing about problems I couldn't relate to at all. Even angsty teenage music was for kids who had a luxury I didn't - they were allowed to get angry, something I was only able to do alone in my bedroom with the door closed, smoking out my window and occasionally doing some recreational cutting. Pop music was for my friends, who never had curfews and with whose parents conversations went two ways, not one. But this song - written in the time my parents' values and expectations were moulded - this was for me, and even though it was embarrassing to be able to relate to it, it was kind of beautiful to value something my kids will be able to take for granted.
Listening to it now, I don't think about those times. I've been listening to it this morning, looking around my little house, waiting for Vincent to get back from a run so we can go to visit my family, and I just think how nice it is, to be older, to live in a (little) world where I belong, and especially the bit didn't seem to matter so much; to be married. And happy.