Music Saved My Life: Mika - Life In Cartoon Motion


At twenty-four, I am securely back to where I was at thirteen: pimply, bespectacled, and too shy to talk to girls. At least I can now wear black nail polish and play my music as loud as I want, and I am getting paid to write about my feelings! All that sad teen poetry DID go somewhere, everybody. As I press play on MIKA’s 2007 debut album Life in Cartoon Motion, I begin to cry the bittersweet tears that come with this strange second adolescence, as a queer young adult finally getting adjusted to living life as who I am.

At thirteen, MIKA was all up in that mess. MIKA was lost with me, in the muck of all these feelings of love and paranoia, trying to figure out why my affections always felt all wrong, why I liked boys AND girls. “Love Today” dried those tears as we cheered for everyone to love “anyone you want to, any way you’ve got to” — I sure have since then.

MIKA heard my screams as I cried in my childhood closet, begging the moth-ball scented void to envelop me, an absolute failure at playing the part of the perfect girl, into the darkness as I sobbed to “Any Other World.” Yet, the pain seemed a little bit less as I clunked through the defiance of being THAT kid in the family with “Stuck In The Middle.”