One of the reasons I love country music (post title taken of course from the song by Tim McGraw) is because you don’t have to look far to find crazy ex-girlfriends. Not that I’m saying by any means that these women are necessarily doing the right thing, but when you’ve been dumped or cheated on, sometimes what you need is to know you’re not the only girl it’s happened to, and it’s alright to feel like you want to destroy something (or someone).
Here’s just a few gems from my iTunes country playlist…
I dug my key into the side
Of his pretty little souped-up four-wheel drive,
Carved my name into his leather seats.
I took a Louisville slugger to both headlights,
Slashed a hole in all four tires.
Maybe next time he’ll think before he cheats.
~ Before He Cheats, Carrie Underwood
Forget your high society, I’m soakin’ it in Kerosene
Light ’em up and watch them burn, teach them what they need to learn
He’s out there holding on to someone, I’m holding up my smoking gun
I’ll find somewhere to lay my blame the day she changes her last name.
~ Kerosene, Miranda Lambert
I hate stripes and orange ain’t my color
And if I squeeze that trigger tonight
I’ll be wearin’ one or the other
There’s no crime of passion worth a crime of fashion
The only thing savin’ your life
Is that I don’t look good in orange and I hate stripes
~ Stripes, Brandy Clark
And of course, y’know, the argument for whether songs like that cause people to copy the actions in the songs is the same argument as whether violent video games make people violent – no, they don’t. I could write extensively on that subject alone, but I won’t; suffice to say that I got my first First for my Sociology of Crime essay on the subject, the upshot of which is that modern research is disproving the idea that violent video games make people violent. But anyway, I digress.
Country music also gives us its fair share of songs about domestic abuse, and while the subject itself tears at my heart, it does offer up some kick ass women too…
I’m goin’ home, gonna load my shotgun
Wait by the door and light a cigarette
If he wants a fight well now he’s got one
And he ain’t seen me crazy yet
He slapped my face and he shook me like a rag doll
Don’t that sound like a real man
I’m gonna show him what little girls are made of
Gunpowder and lead
His fist is big but my gun’s bigger
He’ll find out when I pull the trigger
~ Gunpowder and Lead, Miranda Lambert
Jenny slipped something in his Tennessee whiskey
No law man was ever gonna find
And how he died is still a mystery
But he hit a woman for the very last time
~ Church Bells, Carrie Underwood
For those who are feeling a little bit fragile and need some support and reassurance, there’s always some of that too (of course, this isn’t reducing country music to only one kind of song, because that’s silly and cuts out all the songs about being in love, and god, and whiskey, and boys you love not knowing you exist!).
If he’s gonna go, let him go
If he wants to leave, let him leave
If he’s gonna walk, he’s gonna walk
He’ll only leave you better off
You’re gonna find someone who’ll love you like he should have
And when you finally feel the difference you’ll be so glad
You gave yourself the chance to move on
You’ll wonder why it took you so long
And why you wasted so much time on him
~ Better Off, Sara Evans
Doesn’t happen over night, but you turn around and a month’s gone by
And you realize you haven’t cried.
I’m not giving you a hour or a second or another minute longer
I’m busy getting stronger.
~ A Little Bit Stronger, Sara Evans
Make lots of noise
Kiss lots of boys
Or kiss lots of girls
If that’s what you’re into
When the straight and narrow
Gets a little too straight
Roll up a joint, or don’t
Just follow your arrow
Wherever it points
~ Follow Your Arrow, Kacey Musgraves
So I think you could definitely do worse than treat your breakup with a healthy dose of country music!