Thanks to @kellydehoop for the idea. I gave away many of the mixes I made for myself once I got married that one time in 2007, so most of the mixes I retained were the depressing ones no one wanted. Also, note that I had resisted getting an iPod until around 2005, which should explain the title of this list.
  1. Not Economically Viable
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    12/21/2000. Made to combat the canned mixes forced on us by Trans World, during my tenure at The Wall (now FYE). The winter of Kid A, The Moon & Antarctica, and The Hour Of Bewilderbeast. Also the first appearance of Beck's "Lazy Flies," a song that would become an in-joke with an ex-girlfriend. I accidentally included it on 2 mixes of hers in a row, and when she complained about it, I put it on every subsequent mix for 2 solid years, even one highlighting the Spielberg/Williams collaboration.
  2. Another Side Of Time: Music For That Long Drive To The Nervous Home
    6/25/2001. A solid summer mix, made during a time when I was driving VHS special orders to the post office for Suncoast, a month after our store had opened. I have always loved field trips, so I was glad to do it, but the best part was that it also gave me a chance to listen to music. Starts with Simon & Garfunkel's "America" and ends with "Olsen Olsen" by Sigur Ros, with "Weapon Of Choice" by Fatboy Slim and Blood, Sweat & Tears covering Harry Nilsson in between.
  3. Assuming The Worst
    6/6/2002. My then-girlfriend was going in for neck surgery. They had told her it was neck strain, but it turned out to be pieces of a twin that had begun to grow. We broke up later that same month, for unrelated reasons. Anyway, key track: Doves - There Goes The Fear.
  4. It's A Good Thing They Don't Have A Webcam
    9/27/2002. My first apartment, hearing people having sex through the wall. Dedicated Tindersticks' "Sweet Release" and Royksopp's "Eple" to different stages of their lovemaking.
  5. The Girl From Back Then
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    12/1/2002. A girl I would later write a short story about (ahem, Street Corner Kate & The Curse Of The Seven-To-One Plan) returns to town from college and all the feelings I have from meeting her a year and a half before come flooding back. Begins with the "title track" by Kings Of Convenience, ends with "Clocks" by Coldplay, with lots of frowny-faced songs in between. Jesus.
  6. You Have No Friends. The Album.
    1/31/2003. Kind of an in-betweener, as most of the songs are B-sides or rarities. Mix does not deliver on the promise of its title.
  7. The Mormon Tabernacle Choir Murders Some Nobody
    2/5/2003. My worst mix by far, notable for its title only. Has an early live version of Radiohead's "2 + 2 = 5" on there and "L'America" by The Doors.
  8. Whereas Once I Was Blind, Now I Can See
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    4/11/2003. Celebrating my switch to contact lenses, a move I said I'd never make, until the day I forgot my glasses and 2 women told me I looked handsome without them. I made the appointment on my lunch break and the mix the night after the appointment. I bookended this mix with 2 versions of Radiohead's "Morning Bell": a combo of their own versions (the opening of the Amnesiac version is overtaken by the complete Kid A track), and ending with a HOT jazz cover by Devil's Workshop Big Band.
  9. Naked And On Me
    5/29/2003. The answer to the question, "What kind of women do you like?" Key track: "Meat City" by John Lennon, which I had just "discovered" in his otherwise spotty post-Imagine discography.
  10. This Is The Part Of The Hymn Where I Remove My Pants
    7/7/2003. A good summer mix, made after attending church for the first time in ages. Final track is Pearl Jam doing "Gimme Some Truth," a live recording from the legendary (at the time) State College show that I actually got to attend. Not audible in the live recording: the guy standing behind me screaming all the lyrics to every song for four hours.
  11. Translating An Embarrassing, Gimmicky, High School Love Poem Into An Embarrassing, Gimmicky, High School Love Song
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    11/1/03. Someone mentions the name of my first love, for whom eight years earlier I had written and published an acrostic that revealed her name to the whole school. I go home and make a sprawling, two-disc mix that features The Smiths' "Please, Please, Please Let Me Get What I Want." In many ways, this is probably my favorite mix of all time.
  12. Cat Stevens Death Plane
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    12/12/2003. Made for an old girlfriend. Her boss had noticed another one I had made for her and, of the track list, he said, "This CD is full of passion." That became this mix's subtitle. The title of the mix was referencing the former Cat Stevens being removed from that airplane that one time. It also became my fantasy football team name for several years.
  13. A Balding Fat Man Discusses Some Life Options
    12/27/2003. One of my less contemplative mixes, this one features such upbeat firecrackers as "Hustle Rose" by Metric, "So Alive" by Ryan Adams, and opens with Belle & Sebastian's "Step Into My Office, Baby." I had watched a customer of mine talking over a Star Trek DVD box purchase with his wife/sister and that became the title.
  14. The Last One To Make Mistakes First Wins
    1/27/2004. I send an email to a platonic friend that I immediately regret. Starsailor's "Poor Misguided Fool" and Super Furry Animals' "The Piccolo Snare" are highlights.
  15. I Hate You Bitch. The Album. - 3/14/2004
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    Shortly after my birthday, I brought a girl to a bar to see a friend's band. Unbeknownst to me, my driver's license had expired only days before and I was denied entry. Assuming she would leave in solidarity, I told her to go ahead & that I'd wait. She stayed inside & I waited. For 3 hours. It wasn't as pathetic as it sounds. I got a chance to hear a friend's radio show in the meantime. She came out with 2 other guys, drunk. I rolled down my window, just in time for her to say "Go home, Shaun."
  16. The Short Weekend Begins With Longing
    3/18/2004. Apparently I had further thoughts in the aftermath of "I Hate You Bitch."
  17. Four Months, Three Weeks, Two Days, One Hour Misused
    5/24/2004. The Girl From Back Then returns, fresh off a four-month relationship with a musician. I've always been reliable as a rebound. Another two-disc mix, another highlight of my "career." Features "Tomorrow In Her Eyes" by Ron Sexsmith on disc two, a song that would later grace my unofficial wedding mix less than 3 years later. The flow from Travis' original mix of "Love Will Come Through" to "Her" by Eels to "Not Guilty" by Harrison to the Elbow cover of "Live On My Mind" is fantastic.
  18. A Lifetime Of Nightgowns
    1/1/2005. Another of my favorite mixes, despite its subject matter. I was deeply in love with my friend's wife, and living next door to them (the age-old story). Not my best period, though this terribly sad (and cutting, as it was directed toward her) mix is still well put together (pats self on back while stabbing someone else's). Key painful tracks: "Echo Park" by Joseph Arthur, "About Today" by The National, & especially "Storms" by Fleetwood Mac. Most of 2005's mixes were sad and about her.