Friday, January 28, 2005

Endless Loop

Don't you hate it when you can't get a song out of your head? I've been bugged by one for the last couple of months. I finally get through a few days without it floating in from left field and then whammo, there it is again.

A couple of months ago, brother David steered me to a singer, new to me, named Cheryl Wheeler. She reminds me a lot of Mary Chapin-Carpenter (who seems to have forgotten how to write good songs since she got a husband). Cheryl Wheeler writes moving ballads and she writes comedic songs. One of the latter is the culprit. It's called Potato, set to the tune of the Mexican Hat Dance, and the chorus consists entirely of the word "potato". The whole point of the chorus is to have each line end on a different syllable of the word and the last line ending properly on "to(e)". I can sing along with the CD with no problem. But let me try to sing it by myself and I cannot get the darned lines to come out on the right syllable. It sticks in my head and I endlessly try to start and end in the right place. Something of a tongue, or in this case a mind, twister.

Do you ever consider how many of our brain cells are tied up with this kind of pointless junk? I can't remember what I had to eat yesterday for lunch, but I can remember all the words to a stupid kid song, 40 years afterwards.

Great big gobs of greasy, grimey gopher guts,
Mutilated monkey meat,
Tiny little birdies' feet.
Eyeballs, eyeballs rolling all around the sink,
And me without my spoon!

Real valuable stuff taking up the memory circuits.

Do you ever think as the hearse goes by
That you could be the next to die?
They wrap you up in a clean, white sheet
And put you under about six feet.
The worms crawl in, the worms crawl out,
The worms play pinochle on your snout...

And let's not even go anywhere near I Found a Peanut.

Back in the dark ages, a.k.a. my childhood, we had a 45 rpm record that had a collection of great kid songs. How I wish I could find a mint condition copy of that record. One of my favorites was The School Cafeteria:

I've eaten in all of the diners, in hamburger places as well.
I've eaten in restaurants and drugstores alike
And some were the best in the town.
The last one's our school cafeteria; so nice, so clean, so neat.
But you'll wonder that we are still living
When you hear what they give us to eat:
On Monday we have bread and gravy,
On Tuesday it's gravy and bread.
On Wednesday and Thursday it's gravy and toast,
Which is nothing but gravy and bread.
On that day we went to the principal
and asked for something instead.
So on Friday, for lunch, and by way of a change.....
We had gravy without any bread!

Somebody stop me. I can do this all day. And come to think of it, maybe if I start remembering those old kid songs I can push Potato to the background and out of mind. At least for awhile.

There's a hole, there's a hole, there's a hole at the bottom of the sea....


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