She had never heard the song. I had insisted she listen to it after a teary-eyed, ambitious talk about the illusory nature of ambition and success and love and life over a hops-forward IPA and something a little lighter and less inspiring. So there we sat, listening to Peggy's Lee's "Is That All There Is?" in my Yaris at 2:20 am on a dark street in southeast Portland.
"Is that all there is?
If that's all there is, my friends
then let's keep dancing.
Let's break out the booze
and have a ball,
if that's all there is..."
Peggy's voice oozed effortlessly through the speakers.
One of my hands was loose on the steering wheel, the other involuntarily flipping the iPhone in my left pocket. The mottled shadows of the elm above us created a trippy pattern on the Subaru parked in front of us and bled out into the depths of the darkness beyond.
I saw her face turn towards mine. I closed my eyes.
"Those are the kind of thoughts that'll either make or break ya, huh?"
The elm's shadows darted and flitted and pounced and dissipated in the silence.
Peggy's voice faded. I heard the soft click of the handle as the glow of the running lights rose soft and slow.
"I mean, don't you think so? Don't you think those are the kind of thoughts that'll either make or break ya?"