Thursday, December 1, 2011

No Wiggles in MY minivan

On the way to preschool the other morning, I was singing along with my road trip playlist, and Liz Phair’s “Big Tall Man” came on. My son announced, “Mommy, this is the race car song.” I was like, “OK, kid… whatever.” But then after the lyric “I’m drag racing,” he said, “See mommy, I told you it’s the race car song.”

Um, crap.

I had no idea they were listening so closely. That’s soooo disturbing. Especially since these are some of the other songs in semi-regular circulation in the swagger wagon:

“Let’s get it on” – Marvin Gaye… OK, not Marvin Gaye. Jack Black, from the High Fidelity soundtrack, because I love Jack Black and find him weirdly, disturbingly hot and like to listen to him singing about getting it on. Speaking of Jack Black singing about getting it on, our home phone ring tone was Tenacious D’s “Kielbasa Sausage” until very, very recently. Every single time someone called me, that song played in our house.

“Every day I love you less and less” – Kaiser Chiefs. Some lyrics for those of you who don’t know this little gem: “Everyday I love you less and less. I can't believe once you and me did sex. It makes me sick to think of you undressed. Since every day I love you less and less.”

“Comfortably numb” – Pink Floyd. This is probably the least disturbing song on this list, but it still gives me a twinge when I look in the rear view mirror and see them sort of swaying in their car seats like a couple of tiny stoners.

“Super freak” – Rick James. More problematic than lyrics like “That girl is pretty kinky. I’d really love to taste her” floating through the minivan is the fact that this is my four-year-old daughter’s theme song, and has been since she was able to hold her head up. My hubs started holding her up by waist and butt and doing the MC Hammer “Can’t Touch This” dance move side to side with her while singing the bass line. At a few months old, this made her laugh like a miniature hyena. But since that bass line will always be Superfreak for me, those are the lyrics I sang to her. Poor kid. That’s just so messed up. I guess that’s why therapists make the big bucks.

“Creep” – Radiohead. You’re so f*cking special, kids. So f*cking special.

“Get Up/Sex machine” – James Brown. James Brown. Kids love him. I love him. He makes kids dance like kids shouldn’t dance and mamas dance like mamas definitely shouldn’t be allowed to dance anymore. Shake your money maker, kids. Oh yeah.

“I wanna be sedated” – The Ramones. If exposing my kids to The Ramones is wrong, I don’t want to be right.

“I touch myself” – Divinyls. Yes, really. Don’t judge me. There is an 80’s nostalgia section in my road trip mix (which also includes “Whip It”). Actually, I usually skip the whole touching myself thing when the kids are in the car. There’s really no redeeming musical value, so I feel OK about censoring their experience.

So yeah, that’s what my kids have been listening to. Kind of makes “I kissed a girl and I liked it” seem charmingly naive, huh?

Anyone want to share fabulously wrong songs and lyrics their kids can sing from memory? Come on… it’ll be funny.


  1. My daughter's theme song is "You Sexy Thing" changed to be "You Lisi Thing". It makes sense if you listen to only some of the lyrics. "I believe in miracles, since you came along, you Lisi-thing". Also, "Let's Get It On" (Jack Black, of course... as well as another Jack Black song about such gentle lovin' but we do skip over that one when I notice it came on), of course, James Brown (sex machine), lot of Gaga such as Poker Face, and so many more that I can't think of right now. I know it's lots of slightly questionable ones b/c she wants me to explain all the lyrics to her these days and so I am noticing how often I am cleaning up the meaning as I explain. But it makes me happy, we are all more relaxed when the music is on, and I can't listen to kid music all day. There will be so many influences out there, just chalk this one up to exposure to art and a chance to broach tricky subjects as they become aware of the meanings in the lyrics.

  2. My daughter busts out into - what else? lyrics from the broadway musicals - right now, Hairspray.

    two of my favorites:

    "One upon a time I used to play with toys
    now I like to play around with teenage boys.
    So if i get a hickey please don't have a cow
    - 'cause Mamma I'm a big girl now"


    "Oh my God how times have changed
    This girls either blind or completely deranged
    Ah but time seemed to halt when I was Miss Baltimore Crabs"

  3. Ha! "Gentle lovin'." Nicely put. Excellent. How is that song not in my road trip mix? But it's not. Tragedy.

  4. I thought our music was pretty PG (we usually play kids' music), but we have James Brown's "Sex Machine" in one of our mixes too. Can't recall all the Prince lyrics but I'm sure some of his stuff isn't that great for young ears either.

    Hearing my toddler sing "I like to move it, move it" (from Madagascar) is pretty awesome. It's even better when she's out of the car and shaking her booty! I need to videotape it to show at her wedding!