Sunday, September 21, 2008

Musical Misunderstandings, Excuses and Tuesday Teasers on Sunday


I've posted previously about my son's interpretation of Elvis Costello's Oliver's Army ("Ollabazami"). Two other songs recently made me remember how EASY it is to misunderstand song lyrics--and how funny the results.

First up--Suicide Blonde by INXS. I hadn't heard this one in a long time when it recently popped up on my radio. I remembered how I could never figure out what the hell Michael Hutchence was saying. To me, instead of "Suicide Blonde", it sounded like he was crooning "Soup and Salad Bar." I couldn't figure out why anyone wanted to write a song about a soup and salad bar. Maybe it was a riff on society's bourgeois sensibilities? Obviously, I was at some point informed of my error. But you know what? Nothing's changed. It STILL sounds like he's saying "Soup and Salad Bar" to me. Seriously--go listen to it and tell me if you don't think it sounds more like my interpretation!

Second, my kids heard a radio promo for a concert or something with David Byrne and Brian Eno--and a generous snippet of the Talking Heads' "Life During Wartime" was played. You can probably guess which part of the song it was: "This ain't no party, this ain't no disco, this ain't no foolin' around. . ." This resulted in loud guffawing from the back seat and the question: "Did he really say 'this ain't no potty,' Mama??" I of course explained that he was saying "party," not that the kids cared. They decided they liked it better as "This ain't no potty." So every time the promo comes on I am treated to their interpretation plus any other scatological lyrics they can come up with . . .--stuff like "This ain't no potty, this ain't no disco, don't want no poop in this house." It's lovely. (And okay, yeah, it's funny--but then again, I have the sense of humor of a 10-year-old boy).

Maybe Musical Misunderstandings is a misnomer. Perhaps I should have called this section "Lyrical Misunderstandings." Nah, the first is so much more charmingly alliterative. (I just love saying that word. . ."aaaalllliiiiittttterrrrrrittttttivvvvvvve.")

I'm sorry not to be writing more frequently. My husband is out-of-town for more than two weeks and we're getting ready to remodel the downstairs of our house. I seem to be spending all my time on that. (This week alone, I had at least 6-hours worth of meetings involving the remodel). And carpooling. And grocery shopping. And bill paying. And errands. And otherwise shuttling the kids around and yada, yada. The usual. We're also getting ready to go back east for a week for the Jewish holidays. All of this is making it very difficult for me to sit down at the computer and just write. I know, I know, bitch, moan, bitch, moan. And I've got news for you, folks. It's probably only going to get worse. Because as soon as I get back from my trip, I've got to find a temporary abode for us and pack up everything--all in the space of about three weeks. I hoping, at least, that the remodel, once it has begun, will provide me with fodder to write about. So, bear with me. All 2 of you who are regular readers!

As usual, I can't manage to post my Tuesday Teasers on the correct day. So here are mine for this week. Or is it last week? Tell you what--I'll post the teasers today for this coming Tuesday, but won't link the post at Should Be Reading until Tuesday. Does that work for you? Well, it works for me, so you're stuck with it.

Teaser Tuesdays, hosted at Should Be Reading, asks you to:
  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given.
  • As usual, I can't confine myself to an excerpt from only one book. I actually think I'm showing enormous self-control in quoting from only two. Count your blessings.

    The first is from Nancy Horan's novelization of Frank Lloyd Wright's affair with Mamah Borthwick--told from her (Mamah's, that is) perspective--Loving Frank:

    "As she pulled into the driveway, she saw him and the workmen crouched around something, probably plans. When she got closer, she saw that they were circled around an array of eggs, standing, every last one of them, on end." Page 227.

    The second is from the YA fantasy novel, first in a series, called Fablehaven, by Brandon Mull:

    "'Are you okay?' Kendra said, squatting beside Seth.

    He made a garbled moan, then a second, more distressed complaint that sounded like a donkey gargling mouthwash." Page 132


    Nancy said...

    Gee, thakns. Now I'm REALLY not looking forward to my renovation. Not till next summer...but it's never too early to start agonizing!! Hang in there! It'll all be worth it in the end. Sing something. That'll make you feel better!

    Karen said...

    Thanks, Nancy!