Thursday, January 8, 2009

Reflections back on Rock & Roll- I still feel like I am 16

I am 40. Most days I still feel like I am 16. Okay, I admit I am chronically tired, extremely fatigued and my temper is shorter than when I was 16, but otherwise I am still a teen. I am sixteen at heart. Really! I still feel 16!

I listen to a wide variety of music and was raised on every possible kind of Rock & Roll. I went through Junior High and High School listening to The Police, Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, The Who, Bon Jovi, Aerosmith and Def Leppard before the sugar coated 1980's stuff took over. I still listen to my favorites and I enjoy the flashback to where I was and who I was hanging out with at the time. I can't listen to Chaka Khan's "I feel for you" without thinking of Wende, and the same goes for anything from Michael Jackson's Thriller album. Anyhow, my point is that I can place myself in the past with certain tunes and musical artists.

Where am I going with all of this? Let me share what has happened to me recently. I have discovered that what once controversial lyrics and loud bass guitar is now instrumental Muzak. YES, you heard me correctly. Elevator music. My generation's songs are now piped into the Muzak system. I wanted to laugh, then cry when I was at the Cleveland Clinic and "The Centerfold" by the J. Giles Band was on the overhead system- without the words, just the tune. A part of me was ready to belt out the words because I love that song! This is the same song that my Indian Creek Junior High gym teacher would not let me use in a dance class routine. Mary Kay Walker refused to let me set the routine to the song, Centerfold because of the inappropriate lyrics. Burn in Hell MKW, now Centerfold is Muzak. Take that bitch. The angel is the Centerfold.

As I watched the Fiesta Bowl this week the marching band performed "Stairway to Heaven" at half time. Seriously! Stairway to Heaven is a classic. Even Wayne and Garth from Wayne's World appreciated the fine line between playing and RUINING a song. I had visions of Wayne and Garth sitting next to me on the couch during the Fiesta Bowl half time performance- Wayne would recognize the Zeppelin sound, and Garth would freak out and say, "Way! No Way! Way!" Then Wayne would say,"Oh, ughhhh, Ex-squeeze me? Baking powder?" Everyone knows you just don't mess with "Stairway To Heaven" I am quite certain Jimmy Page and Robert Plant were mortified that their pride and joy was marching band entertainment. Sincerest form of flattery or incredible insult? You decide.

How sad is it that the sounds of my youth are now piped into the speakers in some candy-ass Muzak system. What has happened here? I heard the lyrics in my head as Sting was shouting about his beloved "Roxanne"- yet the Muzak music just rolled the melody. Again, I am sure Sting would cringe at the thought of that kind of butchering.

Then, as if the musical stroll down memory lane was not enough to jolt me back to junior high, Laura Solomon had the nerve to post some photos on Facebook.
Talk about a reality check. At the same time I was blasting the above mentioned LOUD music, this is what I looked like around the time of the BBYO Matzo Ball Dance. Then in retaliation to Laura, my bff, Wende posted a photo of me with my date, Kevin Zeldin. I think I was 15 in this photo, and YES, I still feel the same, only sleepier.

Thanks Muzak and Facebook, I still feel 16!

1 comment:

Sharon Bertolio Wilson said...

OMG Helene!!! I remember MKW not letting you use that song! Every time I hear it (and it's on my iPod) I think about that, especially now that I'm "all grown up" and actually listen to the words of songs. Hell, I was in college before I realized that "Afternoon Delight" was about sex!! I hear you girl...we are still 16 (just trapped inside different bodies!!)

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