Monroe Mann's

Music Autobiography

Img 1315
Hello! I'm the creator of! I am currently in police academy in Florida after working for a while as a lawyer in NY and then teaching English in Shanghai, China. I also recently started a 501c3 not for profit called Break Diving, Inc. Our mission is to help individuals succeed in life! I am also a lifelong actor, filmmaker, writer, speaker, and musician.
You are currently now viewing Monroe Mann's posts. Click here to see everyone's latest posts All 1985 (2) 1987 (2) 1990 (1) 1991 (2) 1993 (1) 1994 (1) 1997 (2) 1998 (2) 1999 (1) 2002 (1) 2005 (2) 2006 (1) 2011 (3) 2014 (2) 2016 (2) 2017 (2)
Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 09, 2017

SONG TITLE: Wake Me Up Before You Go Go by Wham!
A BLAST FROM: July 1985

PLACE OF MEMORY: On the back porch in Port Chester!
EMOTION: Goofiness
MEMORY: Anyone who grew up in the 80s knows this song. I was about 8 years old when this song came out. I remember my older sister Emily had the Wham lunchbox, Wham t-shirt, Wham deluxe record, Wham EVERYTHING. Needless to say, she played this song constantly, particularly on the back porch during summer, and dancing away! Yeah, it's totally a goofy song, but hey, goofiness WAS the 80s. Oh, she also had the full Wham! music video collection on VHS--oh wait, that must have been in the late 80s, because Careless Whisper was on it too. Hmmm...

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 09, 2017

SONG TITLE: Take On Me by A-Ha
A BLAST FROM: July 1985

PLACE OF MEMORY: The Days Of MTV Watching
EMOTION: Sadness
MEMORY: The only reason I say 'sadness' for the emotion is that this video is so sad, and I sometimes feel like the guy in the cartoon, bashing his face and body against the wall because of the demons in his head. But the good news is that the video has a happy ending! He gets out! So while the video is sad, and painful, it also helps me remind me that bad situations can improve greatly. In this case, he escapes the world of the cartoon and he gets the girl! Huzzah! Gotta say: even if this video were made today, in 2017, it's still impressive. The fact that it was made in 1985 is MIND BLOWING. There's no wonder it won six awards and was nominated for two others at the 1986 MTV Video Music Awards. Oh I forget to mention: the song itself rocks. Any millennial who doesn't know this song disgusts me haha. LISTEN TO IT! You need to know it! Oh, and in the end, even though the video is sad, whenever I hear this song, it totally makes me smile. And feel good about the world.

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 17, 2017

SONG TITLE: Nothing's Gonna Stop Us Now by Starship
A BLAST FROM: April 1987

PLACE OF MEMORY: Growing Up in Port Chester
EMOTION: Hopefulness
MEMORY: Well, as soon as this song comes on, I (and I'm sure millions of others) am reminded of the movie Mannequin from 1987. I was 11 years old. And like every other 11 year old, I fell in love with Kim Cattrall. And the idea that this lifeless mannequin could come to life! How wonderful! Talk about giving hope to the guy who never gets the girl! (You'll see that this is a recurring theme in my younger life haha) I'm listening to it now as I'm writing this memory, and wow, it sure makes me smile. And hopeful. Always hopeful that the pot of gold is just around the corner. "And we can build this dream together! Standing strong together! Nothing's gonna stop us now!"

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 13, 2017

SONG TITLE: Never Gonna Give You Up by Rick Astley
A BLAST FROM: December 1987

PLACE OF MEMORY: Skiing in Maine at Pleasant Mountain
MEMORY: This reminds me of a time when my family was still one unit and actually did stuff together. Our family has all but disintegrated since these years, but this is a time that reminds me of how a family should be. We had a 1977 Chevy Suburban, and we'd drive to the mountain and sing this song. Makes me smile to think of those good ol' days.

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 09, 2017

SONG TITLE: Love & Affection by Nelson
A BLAST FROM: September 1990

PLACE OF MEMORY: Going to Middle School in Maine
EMOTION: Laughter
MEMORY: Hahaha, this song reminds me of my goofy middle school days when I was trying desperately to get a girlfriend. I wasn't the most popular person in school, and I would sing this song, imagining that it was me singing: "There she goes... just like an angel. Seems like forever that she's been on my mind. But nothing has changed, she thinks I'm a waste of her time. Oh there she goes, she don't know what she's missing. Can't she see I'll never give up the fight..." It was the perfect anthem for the guy who just could never get the girl. Looking back, I don't remember if their hair was cool or uncool back then (probably cool!) but I know for sure that if I had their hair, I would have been picked on even more than I usually was picked on. :D Truly, though, this song just made me feel great when I was a kid. "I can't live without your love and affection!" The only girl who I have actually ever felt that way about is Louisa Reimers (see 2011), but it's been nearly 5 years since that ended, and I guess the truth is: I CAN live without her love and affection! (wink)

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 29, 2017

SONG TITLE: Good Vibrations by Marky Mark & the Funky Bunch
A BLAST FROM: September 1991

PLACE OF MEMORY: Rye High School
EMOTION: Gotta Dance!
MEMORY: Why my dad never drove me to school and why he made his secretary do it, and also pick me up, I'll never know, except that my dad was a horrible dad. He didn't love my mom, and he certainly didn't love his kids. But I still smile when I hear this song, because Louise (my dad's secretary) would always let me play whatever radio station I wanted when she picked me up or dropped me off, and I always put on Z100 or 95.5 PLJ, and at this time, EVERY DAY, this song played, and it always made me happy. "Good Vibrations" is one of the two songs that always remind me of my year at Rye High School: getting roped onto Varsity wrestling because I weighed 87 pounds; joining Naval Junior ROTC and getting suspended because I was in a hotel room on a trip with other classmates who were underage drinking (not me!), and living at home with just my dad because my little sis and mom were still living up in Maine. It's sad: the only things I remember from that year have to do with Rye High. There are no memories of doing anything with my dad. Why? Because he never did anything with me. I still remember to this day, one day on Father's Day, my dad yelled at me, and my sisters, and my mom, "Oh nothing good has ever come out of me being a father to you kids." That was the day I knew. Tip: never say something like that to your kids. They will never forget it.

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 29, 2017

SONG TITLE: I'll Be There by The Escape Club
A BLAST FROM: November 1991

PLACE OF MEMORY: Rye High School
MEMORY: This is the other song that always reminds me of Rye High. But more than that, it reminds me of my mom, because one day, when I was listening to it, and she overheard it, she said, "I want this song to play at my funeral." Now, every time I hear it, I cry, because I think of my mom. She's still alive, but everytime I hear it, I somehow think she's dead, because I imagine myself at her funeral, and that this song is playing. I was first going to pick sadness for the emotion, but then realized that it's actually love---my mom, despite all her craziness and despite how much she drives me crazy, and despite her constant criticism of me, has at the same time been my number one supporter in nearly everything I do and have done. So when I hear this song, it reminds me of the love and support she gave that more than made up for my deadbeat father's total lack of love and affection. Thanks mom, for everything.

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 29, 2017

SONG TITLE: Help! by The Beatles
A BLAST FROM: November 1993

PLACE OF MEMORY: Center Lovell, Maine
EMOTION: Inspiration
MEMORY: This was one of the first songs I learned on guitar, after "Eight Days a Week!" I remember my mom had an old Goya classical guitar in our log cabin where we lived in Maine. After teaching my first three chords, I was off and running, and now, whenever I hear this song (or "Eight Days a Week") I am transported back to that cabin, and those first chords as I got my first taste of playing guitar. I remember how terribly hard it was to try to play the rhythm on the guitar and try to sing at the same time. For months, I couldn't do it. And then, suddenly... BOOM! I had become a singer-guitarist! Makes me smile remembering that.

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Dec 10, 2017

SONG TITLE: She by Green Day
A BLAST FROM: February 1994

PLACE OF MEMORY: Shawnee Peak, Bridgeton, Maine
EMOTION: Excitement
MEMORY: This entire album, Dookie, reminds me of high school, up in Maine, and this song in particular, of skiing and snowboarding at Shawnee Peak after school. I used to drive this 1977 Chevy Suburban. The skis and boots and boards in the back. Driving down Knight’s Hill Road in the dark, the snow falling, and Green Day blaring. My outlook on the world was so naïve then. And perhaps naturally so, given that I was 16 or 17. It’s certainly a wistful time. Seems like a lifetime ago. It’s hard to believe that I am that same guy. It’s amost like that time is a biography I remember of another human on this planet. And yet, it was me.

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 12, 2017

SONG TITLE: Love Fool by The Cardigans
A BLAST FROM: May 1997

PLACE OF MEMORY: American University, D.C.
EMOTION: Accomplishment
MEMORY: I spent six months at American University in DC, on the Tenley Campus. I had a great time and even had lunch with Sylvester Stallone's grandma haha. It's also the date that marks the completion of my first major research paper, of approximately 60 pages, on the likelihood of success of the European Monetary Union. "Survey Says No". I'm so proud of that paper because I correctly predicted that there would be problems, evinced just recently with the U.K. departure. But this song mostly reminds me of my weekly Friday night swing and ballroom dancing lessons at Bethesda Dance Center. It was here that I first learned to dance. Such great memories!

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 29, 2017

SONG TITLE: Männer sind Schweine by Die Ärzte
A BLAST FROM: September 1997

PLACE OF MEMORY: Lugano, Switzerland
EMOTION: Excitement
MEMORY: First, this music video is super cool. Just keep watching, and you'll see. Second, I remember this was the very first music video and true 'European song' that I heard when I first arrived in Lugano, Switzerland to attend Franklin College Switzerland. I had done my first two years in the USA, and wanted to go abroad. I ended up in Lugano at this awesome school (back then anyway--now I question their politics) and I lived at this place called Giardino, across the street from campus, and above Ristorante Giardino. I had four roommates: Luca, from Italy; Rifat, from Switzerland/Bangladesh; Christian, from Germany; and Daniel, from the USA. And in the kitchen, we had a tv with cable, and I turned it on, and there it was, "Allo Mein Schatz, Ich Liebe Dich! Du Bist Die Einziger Fur Mich!" (Hello my dear, I love you, you are the only one for me)--lyrics that are quite funny when you realize that the song is called, "Men are pigs". Anytime I hear this song, it transports me back to this wonderful time of my life when I lived abroad for the first time, and when I first started learning Italian: in case you didn't know, they speak four languages in Switzerland: French, German, Italian, and Romancsh. And no, Switzerland is not Sweden! :D

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Aug 20, 2017

SONG TITLE: Lola by Allan Theo
A BLAST FROM: May 1998

PLACE OF MEMORY: Hyeres, France
EMOTION: Wistfulness
MEMORY: I spent six weeks living with a French family in the seaside riviera town of Hyères, in the south of France, and studying at the sadly now defunct ELFCA (Élysée de la langue Français de la côte azur--French Language School of the Riviera) on my summer between my Junior and Senior years at Franklin College in Lugano, Switzerland. While walking in town (in Hyeres) one day, I found a music shop, and I stopped in. I had heard this song on the radio, and I fell in love with it, but I had no idea what it was. But I could hum it. And so I started humming it for the salesgirl. And... she knew exactly what song it was, and I bought the single. And now I am sharing this song with you too. Hope you like it as much as I do!

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Aug 20, 2017

SONG TITLE: Truly Madly Deeply by Savage Garden
A BLAST FROM: August 1998

PLACE OF MEMORY: Paris, France
EMOTION: Happiness
MEMORY: It's so interesting that I just saw this music video today, for this song that reminds me so much of Paris, and... THE ENTIRE VIDEO WAS SHOT IN PARIS! What a coincidence, and it took me nearly 20 years to discover this. August of 1998, I lived in the town of Boissy Sous St. Yon, in the suburbs of Paris. I was living with a French family, and studying French at the Sorbonne. Every day, I'd take the train into Paris, walk across the bridge past Notre Dame, up the hill, past the Parthenon, and to my French class. And while walking, I would listen to my music, from an audio mix tape, on my walkman. And one of the songs was Truly Madly Deeply. Which I would hear every single day. So today, now, even 19 years later, whenever I hear this song, it takes me immediately back to that summer, living and studying in Paris. And the many croque monsieurs I ate as well!

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 12, 2017

SONG TITLE: I'm Like A Bird by Nelly Furtado
A BLAST FROM: June 1999

PLACE OF MEMORY: Starting my acting career in NYC
EMOTION: Happiness
MEMORY: Truly, my memories of my first years of truly pursuing acting make me so happy. I remember this song playing constantly on Z100 and 95.5 WPLJ during that summer in NYC. I remember going on auditions downtown, uptown, on the west side, and on the east side! I remember taking acting classes with casting director Sig de Miguel and casting director Mary Egan at TVI Actors Studio. I remember going into the city nearly every day and riding the amazing NYC subway. Going to terrible auditions in horribly hot non-air-conditioned studios! Haha! And I remember the great hope I had of greatness. It reminds me how naive and cocky I once was--I remember truly believing that it would be just a few months until I was 'discovered'. It's not that I didn't have the talent (I do). It's not that I don't have what it takes (I do). But what I realized soon thereafter was that it is REALLY hard to make it in showbiz, because it has nothing to do with how good you are--talent is virtually irrelevant because what mattered was marketing, business sense, and... a whole lot of patience, fortitude, chutzpah, and ingenuity. For every five amazing success stories, there are millions of stories of struggle, and that's what no new wannabe actor, singer, dancer realizes at first. Most give up after a year, or maybe two. Why? Because they naively though, like me, that they were just going to 'make it' immediately, and that rarely happens. To the credit of some, many continue for years (and decades) in the pursuit, but just keep doing the exact same thing over and over, hoping that magically something will change, or someone will 'discover' them---but inevitably, it usually does not happen. So there has to be another way. Well, while my naiveté was quickly destroyed that summer, my ego (in a good way) never was. To this day, I believe I am talented. Why? Because that is precisely the attitude one needs to make it in this business. Every year, I am working on new projects, and taking new measures to break through the noise. It's been nearly 20 years since I first heard this song, and true, I am not a household name, but I will either 'make it' or die trying DIFFERENT THINGS. That's actually how I ended up writing my very first book at age 23 called, "The Theatrical Juggernaut" (which you can find with (yay!) many 5-star reviews on Amazon and I don't think I'm cocky. I don't think I'm arrogant. I just believe in myself. I believe that once an artist, always an artist, and the dream never dies, so you better keep pushing for it, or you are going to rot with bitterness inside. It either comes true, or it festers at your soul, and I ain't letting it fester! I refuse to let my dreams dissipate in my head with lances in my heart. No! Never! I will fight fight fight until the day I die to make my mark on this world through the arts! Why? Because I'm like a bird. I get up. I fly. "I don't know where my home is", so I don't care where I need to go to find the fruition of my dreams. Maybe this app will be a stepping stone on that journey? I don't know. I hope so. I smile because I still believe in myself. I'm like a bird. And if I find difficulty HERE then I am going to fly to THERE. I hear this song and I'm reminded of not only those wonderful years when "Friends" actually took place and cell phones had just gone mainstream (haha), and I'm reminded not only of those those wonderful years when I was in my early 20s, working my ass off to make it as an actor in New York City, but also, and most importantly, it reminds me to forever and ever and EVER: KEEP THE DREAM ALIVE! But more than that, not just to keep the dream alive---TO PURSUE IT WITH A VENGEANCE! I shall succeed baby! I shall overcome! I shall be vindicated! And I hope this inspires you too to go out there and make those childhood and young adult dreams come true. They CAN still come true. :D --Thanks Nelly.

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 09, 2017

SONG TITLE: Sk8er Boi by Avril Lavigne
A BLAST FROM: June 2002

PLACE OF MEMORY: Wakeboarding in Orlando, Florida
EMOTION: Determination
MEMORY: I had just finished five months of Army intelligence school at Fort Huachuca, Arizona. I had driven cross country from NY out to San Diego originally, and then back to AZ for school, and now that I had graduated, I had to drive back home to NY. I decided to go through Florida first! Via Texas! I spent a week at the Wakeboard Camp in the Orlando area. And I heard "Complicated" for the first time while driving into Florida. Or maybe it WAS "Sk8er Boi"? I don't know and I don't care: my love affair with Avril had begun! All I did that whole week is wakeboard, and I had an awesome time! And watch this video: she was so cute! I guess she still is. Yeah, I guess I'd go on a date with her ;)

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 09, 2017

SONG TITLE: Let The Rain Fall Down by Hilary Duff
A BLAST FROM: July 2005

EMOTION: Wistfulness
MEMORY: I chose wistfulness as the memory because I (hard to believe I know) actually miss my days in Iraq. The danger. The excitement. The camaraderie. And this song is one of the many that brings me right back there. And yes, this is one of the songs that my team and I listened to and sang nearly every week in our humvee whenever we went out on missions. Full body armor. M16s. Sig Sauer pistols. .50 cal machine guns. And... Hilary Duff! While on the road, we actually would play this from a small ipod speaker, and sing along: "Let the rain fall down! And wake my dreams!" Haha. Truly makes me laugh. Just as we did every day in those humvees on those dangerous dusty roads of Iraq.

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 10, 2017

SONG TITLE: Wake Up by Hilary Duff
A BLAST FROM: December 2005

PLACE OF MEMORY: New York after my return from Iraq
EMOTION: Excitement
MEMORY: It seems that every five - ten years, I end up living outside the country for a year or more. From 1997 - 1999 I lived in Switzerland. Then back in New York, and after five years, off again to Iraq from 2004 - 2005. Then ten years in NY once again, and then China from 2014 - 2015. This song came out in 2015, and I first heard it when I bought the Hilary Duff compilation album soon after my return from Iraq. I actually think I may have actually bought it at the Fort Drum PX soon after we landed. I can't be certain. But this song rekindled my excitement for a career in the arts, and for the New York City vibe. Even to this day, this song reminds me of a time when I was going after my showbiz career with every bit of effort I could muster. I was so glad that I had survived the war in Iraq, and then, all I wanted to do was get back to my civilian entertainment pursuits--those pursuits that all came crashing down and were torn from me when I got deployed 18 months prior. I was back. And it was now time for my dreams to "Wake Up, Wake Up" and get back to business!

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 17, 2017

SONG TITLE: Chemicals React by Aly & AJ
A BLAST FROM: August 2006

PLACE OF MEMORY: In my room in Port Chester
EMOTION: Exhilaration
MEMORY: Virtually the entire "Into the Rush" album reminds me of listening to Pandora while working on my computer in New York, usually doing my taxes or something else that was monotonous and didn't require intense focus. I remember the first summer I got home from Iraq. It was this summer. The year that came out (and incidentally, I interviewed the founder of Pandora for a talk-show I hosted a few years later!) Well, these songs from Aly & AJ just make me smile so much. They remind me of the windows open. The fall breeze coming through the open window. And wow, back in 2006, just when I got back from--SURVIVED--Iraq, I had so much energy, and was ready to again take Hollywood by storm. Take everything by storm. I was so happy to be back, and this song, and this album remind me of that energy and excitement I had. That... exhilaration to go out and kick it.

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 17, 2017

SONG TITLE: The Sun Is Always Shining Somewhere by Monroe Mann
A BLAST FROM: April 2011

PLACE OF MEMORY: Clam Pass Beach, Florida
EMOTION: Accomplishment
MEMORY: This was the first music video I created for my album, "Get Off Your Ass". I am forever proud of this, because it helped me get over this horrible memory of a girl named Danielle Hogan. Yep, another heartbreak. But alas, my friend George Oberdorster in Florida inspired me when I was in Florida visiting my mom, who was basically on a 6-month vacation with her cousin down there. George told me in January of 2011, while we were driving around Naples, FL in his car, "You need to make a music video for these songs!" At first, I dismissed it, but when I got back to New York, I really started thinking about it. Before I knew it, I was planning it. And next thing I know, I was casting it at Ripley Grier Studies in midtown Manhattan. And wow, that April, I was in Florida, on the beach, SHOOTING A MUSIC VIDEO. And with the beautiful Anatoli Grek as my co-star, who is now a soap opera star in Greece! Anyway, I credit this music video with helping me to channel my heartbreak. It was a song that I wrote several years prior as an ode to myself--as a way to cheer myself up. And truly, to this day, anytime I am sad, if I just play this song on guitar and sing it, I smile and feel so much better. Try it yourself! It will make you happy!

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 09, 2017

SONG TITLE: Tiger Boo by Tiger Boo
A BLAST FROM: August 2011

PLACE OF MEMORY: The Attic at the house in Port Chester
EMOTION: Laughter
MEMORY: This song is sooo catchy and so cute! It's all in German, and it reminds me of the first two months of my relationship with Louisa Reimers, the German girl I met on the beach while I was a lifeguard that summer, 2011. I remember that she was the one who introduced it to me, and then, I fell in love with it so much that eventually, she hated the song, because all I would do was sing it to her... ALL... THE... TIME... I challenge you to listen to it and not smile. Soooooo adorable!

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 09, 2017

SONG TITLE: Eisberg by Andreas Bourani
A BLAST FROM: October 2011

PLACE OF MEMORY: Altenholz, Germany
EMOTION: Bittersweetness
MEMORY: I started off loving this song until I would cry every time I heard it. Thankfully, I don't cry anymore when I hear it--I just smile. Long story short, Andreas Bourani is a German singer. This song on its own is simply beautiful, and proof for anyone that the German language can sound so pure and pretty. Well, this song always reminds me of this girl, Louisa Reimers, who is... German. I met her when I was lifeguarding on the beach early that summer, in July 2011. I ended up going to Germany to visit her, and that's when I first heard the song--in my hotel room, while watching television at the Hotel Waffenschmiede (in Kiel). I fell so hard for Louisa, and for all intents and purposes was my first and only 'girlfriend'. We had quite the romance for about a year, and then, it ended absolutely horribly. Even to this day, I still think of her, and my memories of her actually cause problems with most of my relationships today, haha. One of the great memories of that time, however, is this song. I listen to it now and it reminds me of the best parts of my relationship with her, and remind me of my trips to Germany to see her, and her trips to New York to see me. To this day, I am saddened that it didn't work out, but I have this song as a wonderful memento of what was, and perhaps, of what might have been. This song, truly, is perhaps one of my favorite songs of all time. I can listen to it over and over and it makes me so happy.

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 09, 2017

SONG TITLE: On The Beautiful Blue Danube by Johann Strauss II
A BLAST FROM: March 2014

PLACE OF MEMORY: In Vienna with Marketka!
EMOTION: Happiness
MEMORY: Before I moved to Shanghai, China to teach English and study Chinese, I spent three months in Europe. During part of that time, I bought a eurorail pass and traveled all throughout Europe from Oslo, Norway all down through Eastern Europe, and then back to Rome, Italy. One day, I was in Prague, Czech Republic (which I think is now called Czechia), and I got on the train south for Croatia or Slovenia, or whatever is below Czechia. It was very late at night as the train was traveling along through the middle of Czechia. I saw a girl who was by herself, crying. Very beautiful. Tall. I asked what was wrong. We ended up talking. I ended up giving her a big hug. Eventually, I discovered that she was getting off in Brno, the second largest city in Czechia. On a whim, I said, "Can I get off with you?" She was so surprised, and didn't believe me. But she believed me when the train stopped, and... I jumped off too! She was kind enough to let me crash at her place, and I stayed for a day or two, and she gave me a tour of the city. Even better? We made plans for a second date the following week: we would both take a train from different directions and meet in Vienna, Austria for the weekend. And we did! And while there, we went to see the Viennese orchestra play! And the very last song played? On the Beautiful Blue Danube! She and I had a wonderful time. We stayed in touch on Skype while I was in China, and briefly while I was back in NY, but now, we've sadly lost touch. Hey Marketka, if you are reading this: get in touch will you!

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 09, 2017

SONG TITLE: Xi Shua Shua by The Flowers
A BLAST FROM: April 2014

PLACE OF MEMORY: Shanghai, China
EMOTION: Excitement
MEMORY: Oh man, this song completely epitomizes my year living in China. As soon as it comes on, I am transported back to my bike on the Shanghai streets; to my daily Chinese lessons at Mandarin House, and later Ocean Mandarin and SN Mandarin; all the wonderful friends I met there from all around the world. After all the stories my dad told me about his time during WWII in China, and my mom's stories about Bill Drummond's Hong Kong furniture import business, and of course, my love for languages, I knew from high school that I had to one day live in China. I wasn't sure it ever was going to happen, and then one day while working as a public defender attorney in White Plains, NY, I realized something: I didn't like my job, and I loved traveling, foreign languages, and foreign cultures far more. Truly, the foreign culture of visiting the county jail every week to meet with clients was becoming far too familiar! So...I made a plan! I got certified online as a TEFL (teaching English as a foreign language) instructor. I found an online recruiter who helped me get a job at the great Wall Street English in Shanghai. And then... I gave my one-month notice and said, "I'm leaving for China baby!" And I did! And it was one of the best decisions I have ever made in my life. Shanghai is one of the most amazing cities in the world, and I absolutely love the friends I made there: my thousands of students, my many expat friends, and even the stray dogs! Shanghai holds so many great memories that I have gone back at least once every year since I've been back. And I intend to go there again this year too! AND I SPEAK CHINESE NOW! 现在我的汉语非常好哈哈。我特别喜欢学习汉语!是我的一个最喜欢的爱好!The one big issue is the pollution. I think I might still be living there were it not for the pollution--I truly got the flu once a month. It was really uncomfortable. I hope that the government takes serious the pollution problem and takes pains to fit it. Time will tell. 因为上海的污染不好!

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 17, 2017

SONG TITLE: Try Everything by Shakira
A BLAST FROM: November 2016

PLACE OF MEMORY: New York, prior to moving down to Florida
EMOTION: Determination
MEMORY: I think I first heard this song on Pandora, sometime in November of 2016. At this time, I was preparing for my move down to Florida to start police academy. As soon as I heard it, I fell in love, not only because it's Shakira, and not only because it's catchy, but it's INSPIRINGLY catchy, and it sort of tells the story of my life: I try everything. I do everything. I am criticized often for not 'picking one career', but it's just not in me. Why can't I do many things well? Why can't I attend police academy while also coding this app? Life is short, ain't it? Well, I like experiencing what the world has to offer, and living vicariously through the lives of fictitious movie and television characters just doesn't cut it for me. When I want to do something, I go do it: I try everything. Sometimes it doesn't work out. And it's painful. And emotionally draining. But sometimes it does work out. And in all cases, I have no regrets--because I tried. I try everything. Well, everything except drugs. And refusing to use deodorant. And jumping out of an airplane without a parachute. With a parachute? No problem. So I guess you can't try EVERYTHING. But most everything. Thanks Shakira, for reminding me to keep getting up again after every one of my failures. :)

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 09, 2017

SONG TITLE: Can't Stop The Feeling by Justin Timberlake
A BLAST FROM: December 2016

PLACE OF MEMORY: The top of Hollywood
EMOTION: Motivation
MEMORY: My friend Dennis Hurley is one of the dancers in this video. He and I go way back to the early 2000s when we were both living in the NYC area, kickin ass in showbiz. I think he first found me after reading my book, "The Theatrical Juggernaut"--we became fast friends. The first time I heard this song was around winter, 2016, when he sent me the video link, and long before it had become a worldwide hit. From the moment the song started, I knew I loved it, and the hook was so inspiring, "Can't Stop The Feeling! DANCE DANCE DANCE DANCE!" And seeing Dennis (the albino supermarket employee) in the video inspired me even more! Dennis was doing it! Out in Los Angeles, in a music video with Justin Timberlake! Doesn't get much cooler than that. I asked him, "How did you get the gig?" He said, "I responded to a very low-key casting on Craigslist looking for real people who can dance for a music video." There was no mention of Timberlake at all. And Dennis, like the rockstar he is, didn't let his ego get in the way of being a part of an indie no-name music video. The result? He was rewarded for his humility. And I'm smiling now as I write this. Why? Because it's so inspiring, and Dennis (and Justin) have motivated me to continue to keep my Hollywood dreams alive! Congrats Dennis! I will always think of you whenever this song plays!

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Jul 29, 2017

SONG TITLE: Despacito by Luis Fonsi, Daddy Yankee, & Justin Bieber
A BLAST FROM: July 2017

PLACE OF MEMORY: Fort Myers, Florida
EMOTION: Determination
MEMORY: I moved down to Florida from the NYC area in March 2017 to attend police academy. Down here, in South Florida, was the first time I heard this song. Every time I hear it now, I think of the summer I spent coding this app ( and pushing through police academy. As I write this, I have but three more weeks to go until graduation. Determination baby. Slowly but surely. Des... pa... cito.

Monroe Mann in United States of America posted this on Aug 20, 2017

SONG TITLE: It's Raining Men by The Weather Girls
A BLAST FROM: July 2017

PLACE OF MEMORY: Attending police academy in Florida!
EMOTION: Accomplishment
MEMORY: Oh police academy! Overall, police academy was just Army basic training all over again. But a little less grueling, and still with its funny moments--there were definitely some amusing experiences, as I shall explain. Gotta say: getting pepper sprayed in your eyes is absolutely horrible. Face burning---like it's actually melting off. Eyes burning so much that they are plastered shut. And during all this, we had to force the eyes open, find the handcuffs, and arrest the bad guy. Oh what an experience. Well, in the showers, we have sometimes 60 guys all naked and showering all at the same time. At some point, someone just started singing this song. "It's raining men! Hallellujah!" And we all laughed, and started singing along. Anytime I hear this song now, this is what I will remember: a locker room full of far-too-happy naked guys showering and laughing together at police academy while singing about other men. Haha!! Hallellujah!!