Ever since we saw “Guardians of The Galaxy” Milly has been singing songs from the soundtrack particularly Blue Swede’s “Hooked on A Feeling”. As soon as we get in the car, she grabs my iPod, hooks it up, and selects the song.
Aah yes, the familiar strains of “Hooked on A Feeling”. I’ve always felt bad for the studio singers, wondering what they looked like standing there singing the opening chorus with such commitment and feeling:
“Ooga-Chaka Ooga-Ooga Chaka-Ooga Ooga-Chaka…”
This song is like Milly’s cup of morning coffee. She cranks it up as I’m driving her to school, and then she car dances to it. She doesn’t hide her car dancing in any way. She looks like she’s having a seizure, flailing around in the front seat. I have to drive with a straight face, or she’ll think I’m laughing at her. ASD kids often think this way. Truth be told, I would be laughing at her a little bit because it’s funny. She’s hilarious but trying to explain the nuance to her isn’t worth it. So, I keep it together. It’s not funny. Ahem.
The part of this scenario that is a little unsettling to my maternal DNA, however, is the singing. Milly belts out this song like a drunken bar maid. Have you listened to the lyrics? I never paid attention. Lyrics have never been something I really noticed. Case in point, “Greased Lightning” from the movie “Grease”. “Grease” was my all-time favorite movie until I saw “Xanadu” at which point that became the best thing I’d ever seen. I had every song from “Grease” memorized and could sing them on command. Prancing around the house at six years of age, I would jump on the couch like John Travolta and shout, “The chicks’ll cream, for Greased Lightning!” When I watched “Grease” at a friend’s house during my senior year of high school, listening to “Greased Lightning” was a revelation and a shock to my system.
“The chicks will…CREAM? Are you kidding me? I sang that when I was in Kindergarten! What the what?! And what’s with Kenickie’s condom breaking in the backseat of his car with Rizzo? This isn’t a kids’ movie!”
Well, “Hooked on A Feeling” isn’t a kids’ song either. Listen to this!
Lips as sweet as candy
Its taste is on my mind
Girl, you got me thirsty
For another cup o’ wine
All the good love
When we’re all alone
Keep it up girl
Yeah, you turn me on
It’s a classic pop song full of sexual innuendo, but it sounds so weird coming out of my 11 year-old daughter’s mouth as she does her
morning calisthenics car dancing when I drive her to school! I wonder if that’s how my mother felt listening to me sing “Greased Lightning”?
Yesterday, as we were out enjoying what is likely to be one of our last really wonderful autumnal days, Milly had once again decided to be the car DJ. She was scrolling through all the artists and came across Ginuwine. I winced. I honestly can’t remember how Ginuwine got on my iPod, but I knew exactly what song it was. “Pony”. The lyrics were suddenly right there. Oh Lord, let’s not play that song.
“Ginuwine. That’s Donna’s cousin on ‘Parks and Recreation’. Can I listen to this song?”
“Uh…well, hmmm. I think there are….”
And she hit play. That grinding bass started and then Ginuwine’s singing, “I’m just a bachelor lookin’ for a partner, Someone who knows how to ride without even fallin’ off…”
Eadaoin was in the backseat. “Why is this song called ‘Pony’?”
“I think that we should find another song. This song is too sexy for younger ears, Milly.”
“What’s so sexy about it?”
The more I make a big deal out of something, the more she’s going to want it. So, I have to play it off like it’s nothing. This is human nature. I, however, do not want to explain the meaning of this song’s chorus to my daughter!
“If you’re horny, let’s do it. Ride it, my pony. My saddle’s waiting. Come and jump on it!”
I asked myself why, in fact, I had that song? Why?! Then I remembered. It’s Channing Tatum’s fault. I went out for a girls’ night to see “Magic Mike”. Channing danced so…er…nicely to this song that I was inspired to buy it. That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it. Beyond that, what I knew for certain is that I did not want to be asked: “What does horny mean?” I hate that word for one, and I also…just didn’t feel like it. She can hold onto her childhood a little longer. She can be in middle school when she learns what ‘horny’ means.
In the middle of my maternal ruminations, Eadaoin shouted at me. “Mom! I know what this song means! I know why it’s called ‘Pony’! I’ve figured it out! That’s disgusting!! Mom! How could you? How could you have a song like this on your iPod! Mom!!! Just…MOM!” she said in an obvious shaming tone.
I grinned. She obviously doesn’t want to know what ‘horny’ really means either.
And I’m so happy about that. I will wear that badge of shame applied to me by daughter with pride this morning as I take Milly to school and NOT laugh at her as she, once again, car dances and sings her heart out to Blue Swede’s “Hooked on A Feeling”.
I know I’m definitely hooked on a feeling. I love my girls.