(Black Press Media file photo)

Rickter Scale: Early morning ear worm resonates

The Rickter Scale is a regular column

Rick Stiebel/Columnist

I woke up early Saturday morning with a riff kicking around in my cranium that I couldn’t trace until my second cup of coffee.

Do do, do do do do do, do do do do do do, do do do.

Apologies for my clumsy attempt at sharing the melody; this would make perfect sense to those who can read musical notes if I knew how to copy them.

Turns out it was a song by the Headstones from The Oracle of Hi-Fi, one of a cluster of CDs the bride and I took home, winners of a draw prize we lucked into at a Black Press Christmas party in 2002.

One song in particular had a combination of staccato guitar and pulsing beat that I never dance to that grabbed me by both ears on first listen.

READ MORE: Rickter Scale

Although I hadn’t heard it again in years, the song enjoyed a moment or two on mainstream radio at the turn of the century during my afternoon commutes back before I eschewed the repetition of classic rock stations.

Unlike my musician bride, I can’t handle full volume feedback and screaming singers first thing in the morning on the way to the salt mine.

I’ve morphed to news, weather and opinion now, perhaps proof that age is indeed relentlessly catching up to me.

I finally listened to the song again after Saturday’s to-do list was filed and I’d achieved the correct level of chemical comfort the situation called for that night.

The lyrics resonated with me so much I mused to the bride that the words we just shared may have inspired the next Rickter Scale.

After pausing for a pregnant moment, she nodded politely, holding back her “here he goes again” frown and “uh, oh” eye roll until I left the living room for a refill.

There’s much I admire in the crafting of a song that employs an economy of lyrics – part whisper, part sledgehammer – that leads the listener to places and perspectives intended or otherwise by the author.

I’ll spare you the song in its entirety, but feel compelled to share a few lines that left an indelible impression on me.

“It’s just a word I heard maybe I don’t remember, somewhere along the line I misbehaved. Missing pieces that are left out of the story painting over all the things we didn’t like. It’s got something to do with what makes us all tick, there’s something there that eats us up inside. I’m no stranger to misbehaviour, I’ve reframed every single failure…”

Rick Stiebel is a semi-retired local journalist.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Rickter Scale

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

UPDATED: Traffic flowing normally after morning crash on Douglas Street

Traffic at the Douglas and Finlayson streets intersection was temporarily impacted

PHOTOS: Families, spectators wave goodbye to Navy Task Force from Victoria shorelines

HCMS Winnipeg and HCMS Regina sailing to Hawaiian training exercise, further deployments

371 British Columbians battling COVID-19, health officials confirm

Thursday (Aug. 6) saw a second straight day of nearly 50 new confirmed cases

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Aug. 4

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

POLL: Should it be mandatory to wear masks when out in public?

B.C. is witnessing an alarming rise in the number of cases of… Continue reading

RCMP looking for missing teen in Comox Valley

Jenessa Shacter was last seen going for a walk in downtown Courtenay

B.C. wildfire crews have battled 111 blazes in the last seven days

Twenty-nine fires remain active, as of Friday (Aug 7)

‘We don’t make the rules’: Okanagan pub owner says staff harassed over pandemic precautions

‘If you have six people plus a baby, guess what? That’s seven’ - West Kelowna Kelly O’Bryan’s owner

T-Rex earns big bids at B.C. dino auction

Over 500 dino-themed lots sold to buyers from across North America

Remembering Brent Carver: A legend of Broadway who kept his B.C. roots strong

Over the years, the Cranbrook thespian earned his place as one of Canada’s greatest actors

Statistics Canada says country gained 419,000 jobs in July

National unemployment rate was 10.9 per cent in July, down from the 12.3 per cent recorded in June

Most Read