My office “despedida” (Filipino goodbye party that is a category of its own but bordering children’s birthday party) was themed “Maggie Mia: Here She Goes Again” because, of course. It was extremely on-brand and I felt extremely loved. So in honor of that amazing party, here’s an inspired blog post.
I strongly believe that the complete discography of ABBA has a song for every life situation ((okay fine, maybe not that time that your Filipino Grab driver offers you unsolicited dating advice and tells you to wait for a man who will tell you he likes you unprovoked and you sit in the back of the car completely deceased and properly set right, but like…. most other relatable life moments)).
I’ve very charitably compiled a corresponding ABBA song from the Mamma Mia II: Here We Go Again soundtrack for those moments when you need them the most. Enjoy!
-As proven by the movie sequel, this song can be as much for life’s melancholic and frustrated moments as it can be its brazenly joyous. Listen to it when you’re mad at yourself for falling into the same pattern of behavior you thought you were over, like stress-crying at the bubble tea shop in public, or when you’re high on life walking in your city at 10 at night, knowing you’re exactly where you need to be.
First off, I think Fernando is a hidden karaoke gem. Will everyone hate you for choosing it? Maybe. Will the ghost of Cher shine a beacon of light on you and Spanish drums will begin to softly beat in the distant expanse? Yas. Sing this song at karaoke or anytime you remember the Alamo.
I’ve Been Waiting For You:
When your Food Panda sends a “five minutes away” notification, pop this song on, and have a single tear roll down your cheek as you wait by your window.
When your female friendships to be given an extra dose of sheer power and audacious femininity via a pack of bedazzled 70s go-go dancer troops in perfect harmony and foot stomps, you’re always covered.
Okay, fine, how does a weird song about Napoleon surrendering at Waterloo somehow apply to life’s greatest nuances? You know how you feel when you are absolutely confident that something is going to happen? Maybe you’re on a mission to find the perfect pair of jeans while out shopping or are on your way to knock out a bunch of errands and you will not be stopped. Put this song on and feel the confidence strengthen your resolve.
This song is def one of the most versatile options on the soundtrack. If you are heartbroken, put this on. If you are slighted by a crush because they’re in love with a model-esque mutual friend even though you found a nickel in your bra just the other night so maybe you’re not the quality pick you think you are, put on this song. When you’re sitting across from the Timothee Chalamet look-alike at a book store and want to look like you’re engrossed in an academic podcast, put on this song. When your teenage cousin keeps going on about a tiny baby boy who definitely wears Axe and has misogynistic tendencies, sing this song to them like a jilted old maid who’s trying to impart some knowledge. Play this song to dissuade yourself from downloading Tinder. IT CAN BE USED FOR ANYTHING!!
Why Did It Have To Be Me?:
Play this song as you’re crouched over your toilet at 2 in the morning because you ate a room temperature sandwich with mayonnaise that had been sitting out for hours because you were too polite to say no. Will it help? Medically speaking, yes.
The Name of The Game:
Ugh, we all have those “will they, won’t they” situations in our lives: mine is currently with the immigration officer at the NAIA airport who threatened me with deportation…but also were sparks flying??! This is the song for all those totally relatable “it’s complicated” situations.
I Have A Dream:
This song is about blind optimism! You are required to dance like you’re at a Greek wedding and break at least three porcelain plates during the duration of the song! You are Alexis Bledel chasing after Kostas Dounas in “Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants”! Listen to this song when you need to escape to that mental shalom while you’re waiting at the bank or going through your emails. Sorry, FAFSA, you can’t keep me down; I’m Meryll Streep and I’m running away to Greece to have a kickass baby by myself.
Fun fact, this was the last song that made me cry in public as I walked home from my cycling class. Is that the whitest thing I’ve ever written? Maybe. Anyway, this is the best song to sing out loud as you contemplate moving somewhere whether for a new job, or some kind of wild intuition, or just to convince yourself that you’re doing the right thing. When you need to feel vulnerable about being upset about leaving or being scared to get somewhere new, or feel weird in the in-between, just know this is a two-thumbs up for cry-ability.
Kisses of Fire:
Did a guy text you asking you for a nude? Send a video of you singing this song back, while staring unblinkingly into the camera with a rose in your mouth. That’s sex appeal, baby.
When I Kissed the Teacher:
Never. Sorry but sweet Swedish ABBA, this is just creepy and statutory.
One of Us:
When you’re in a friend fight and you want it to be over as soon as it starts, because let’s be honest you instigated it and then immediately realized you’re wrong, this song can eloquently express that frustration. I also use this song for motivation to become strong and not weak….like Dominic Cooper’s voice in it. Sorry but he can barely carry it – which is the same thing I tell myself to inspire myself to use the 4 lb weights instead of the 3 lb weights at cycling.
This is a flawless and important list and you’re welcome.