Do As I Say

At one time I was a thirteen-year-old girl who defended the music she listened to by saying she didn’t even know what the lyrics were — that she liked it for the beat.

Ugh, I know this is going to come back to bite me in the ass.

I remember my mom taking away my Vanilla Ice tape (that’s right, cassette) because she didn’t like that he was talking about an 8-ball in one of his songs. An 8-ball…what the hell was that anyway? Something on a pool table, right? She should’ve been more concerned with one of his other songs where he was talking about having sex in the clouds or something. You’d think I’d remember the lyrics since my Bestie and I listened to it over and over writing them down in my unicorn-clad Trapper-Keeper.

Sometime later, my dad heard his baby girl and her same friend sing the word libido to Nirvana’s, “Smells Like Teen Spirit” before getting dropped off at a church function. I still remember him turning down the music inside our Ford Aerostar and asking if I knew what that word meant. Uh no, all I knew was that it rhymed with mosquito. Maybe that’s why Kurt Cobain wrote it? It’s so embarrassing to think of now — how my father must have felt hearing his little girl say something so crass. He was super old-fashioned, yet he always let me listen to whatever crap I wanted.

My Bestie and I are still great friends and often scoff at the garbage we used to listen to: Silk’s “Freak Me”, H-Town’s “Knockin’ Da Boots”, TLC’s “Red Light Special”…all totally inappropriate for young ladies.

These songs didn’t turn us into prostitutes or even make us promiscuous. However I see why our parents wouldn’t want us listening to them being young, impressionable minds and all.

Luckily, my friend and I went on to develop a healthy appreciation for real music…actual musicians who play actual instruments (although we still love to shake what our mama’s gave us).

So I guess when my daughter is blaring some song about Birthday Sex or S &M, I’ll have to think back to my days as a young lass who loved music solely because it made me want to dance. But if I see any booty shaking, I’m taking her iPod away.

10 thoughts on “Do As I Say

  1. We really were a lot more naive and innocent then. Kids today still have teen minds, even though they get exposed to so much more.

    My baby is so young, we don’t have to monitor ourselves yet, but the time’s coming soon, when he’ll be repeating everything, and watching our every move. You really become more aware of everything then. Yikes!


  2. Made me laugh and remember days gone by…

    Being raised Baptist (Southern Baptist at that) while growing up in Mississippi during the 80s, my friends and I were often subject to church youth group meetings talking about the “evils” of “heavy metal” music.

    My friend and I would be in the back of the room singing along to whatever Motley Crue, Poison, Ozzy, etc., song they were demonizing.

    And guess what, we didn’t end up wearing pentagrams, worshiping Lucifer or sacrificing any goats. But damn if we didn’t have a good time!!


  3. Yeah right, you’re not taking anything away. You’re gonna dance around and embarras her in front of her friends!
    Im surprised you didn’t mention Cobain’s “Rape Me”… Our poor parents!
    Secret- I tried to put “Let’s Talk About Sex” on our home answering machine in Middle School. Yikes! Talk about embarrasing!


  4. Trapper Keeper, yes!!! Luv this post, reminds me of other songs like I Want Your Sex-George Michael and Talk Dirty To Me-Poison…remember Expose?! So many really bad songs…but a fun time to reminisce about. Thx!


    • So many bad songs indeed! The hubby looked up the lyrics to one of the songs I mentioned and read them aloud…we about died laughing and then were amazed at how such a terrible song was produced. Expose! Oh man. I loved all those girls groups…SWV and Jade too. My taste in music was atrocious!


  5. It gets really tricky when one song by an artist, say Katy Perry, is great for them to listen to, say “Firework.” But then another by the same artist, say “Last Friday Night” requires an explanation of Menage a Trois. Aso, they download everything, so it is all much more accessible to them.

    The other thing that stinks is when you want to listen to a song with inappropriate language (think Pink or Lady Gaga), and then the kids say, “Can I download that?”

    I have not succeeded in this area at all. There are songs on my nine-year-old’s iPod that I don’t let her play for her friends. What does that tell you about my vigilance?


    • That is hard! I can already hear her asking me what a “disco stick” is…
      Music is really important in our household, so I’m sure it’ll be very difficult to censor it all once she gets a little older. Right now it’s still easy to listen to whatever since she’s unable to repeat anything…yet. I’m sure I’ll be the same way.


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