Earlier this afternoon, on my way here to Charleston to meet up with my wife ahead of her birthday, I enjoyed a really interesting conversation with a woman on the flight down from Reagan National Airport. She was a slightly older woman and we talked a little bit about life. I told her that I was a newlywed and she offered some advice while also sharing the story of her own marriage, which didn’t end too well. The stuff she was sharing reminded me of a very specific Boyz II Men song I used to wear out back in the day. That brings me to this week’s moment in the Flashback Friday series: Boyz II Men’s “Pass You By”.
How I first came across this moment? It started with the music video for the song, which I saw on BET’s Midnight Love in September 2000. I heard the track on Music Choice a few days later.
What it meant to me then? Upon first listen, I instantly liked it. I was reminded of a woman I had been crushing on several months earlier before school let out for the summer. She rode my bus in the afternoons and the summer came before I was able to pull the trigger…or her phone number. When August and September rolled around and school kicked back up, she wasn’t on that bus in the afternoons. This song along with Kelis’ “Get Along with You” embodied what I was feeling.
What it means to me now? Some 16 years later, the lyrics take on a different meaning for me. They are words about hurt…specifically a woman that has been burned by love. It applied to a couple of women I was involved with during the Lost Decade of Dating. Other than that, it’s a track that has a place in the Juan Thomas Presents…Heartbreak Hotel playlist on my Windows Media Player.