Different Times

Occasionally I hear people talking about funny commercials and I never have any idea what they're talking about. If they make it sound funny enough, I'll look it up on YouTube. But the only commercials I ever see these days are for abcmouse.com, Pull-Ups, new kid movies, and all of the Seat Pets/Pillow Pets/Stuffies and what not. If I'm ever watching one of my shows (which is close to never), the kids are fast asleep and I'm using the fast forward feature on the DVR during the commercials. That would be the only chance I'd have to see any kind of commercial, and why would I watch them if I don't have to do so? I tried watching one my shows in real time while Finley was occupied with her iPod or a puzzle or something, and I quickly had to turn it off. There are so many innuendos everywhere. I can't even listen to mainstream radio in the car because almost every song is about sex. I am not a prude, but I am flabbergasted at the songs that are allowed to be played on the radio now. I was in the car by myself the other day and I heard a particular song that is chock-full of filth. I felt sad that society has let this be the norm, and I started daydreaming about my childhood, and how the songs that I listened to were completely innocent. I didn't watch anything that suggested life consisted of anything other than butterflies and rainbows. Right?

Well, perhaps a little wrong. 

I was thinking about the movies that I watched repeatedly and the songs that frequented our old Suburban and Dodge Ram. As it turns out, the story lines to the movies and the songs were not quite what I thought when I was little. Here's a list of songs and movies that I thought I understood as a child. 

1. Dirty Dancing - I must have seen this movie 987 times before I had any clue that the reason that Penny couldn't dance with Johnny was because she had AN ABORTION! I just thought she had a stomach ache, and the cheapo doctor had "a dirty knife and a folding table", and cut her stomach. 

2. Fancy (Reba McEntire) - I thought this song was about a poor mom that sent her daughter into town with all the money to her name to make a better life for herself. Well, I got this one right. Sort of. I just missed the part that she was whoring her daughter out. 

3. Grease - Again, I saw this movie almost a thousand times before I understood that there was a pregnancy scare with Rizzo and Kenickie. Or that "Summer Lovin" was a contrasting story of how far Danny and Sandy had gone. Or that "Grease Lightning" is perhaps the filthiest song ever written. Or that the entire movie was something I probably shouldn't have been allowed to watch at the age in which I started watching it. 

4. Feed Jake (Pirates of the Mississippi) - This was just a sad song about a guy that loved his dog, and wanted to make sure that someone took care of him when he died. Not all the other berserk stuff in the verses. I listened to this song as an adult and was like, "What the?!?" Seriously. Go listen to it. 

5. That Summer (Garth Brooks) - I don't really know what I thought this was about, but I can guarantee you that I had no idea it was about a young man having a sexy tryst with an old lady with hands of leather. (eww.)

6. Roger Rabbit - I thought this was just a weird half real people/half cartoon movie for kids. I didn't see the inappropriateness of the way that Jessica Rabbit hugged her husband in public until I was a teenager. Or that the entire movie was full of innuendos.

7. The Fireman (George Strait) - You mean to tell me that this song is not about a fireman fighting real fires? Oh, George. You fooled me.

8. Growing Pains - Can we just address the fact that Mike's best friend's name was _______ (I don't even want to type out the name/word!)?? It was a wholesome show and all, but come on. ________?!?!

9.  The Wanderer (Dion) - This song is far before my time, but it still frequented the old 'burb's speakers. To my young mind, it was about a man that moved around a lot. I didn't know that while he was moving around a lot, he was sleeping with everybody on the way.

10. Pretty Woman - No clue that she was a hooker. Didn't even know what a hooker was.

11. Pulp Fiction - Totally kidding. I was NOT allowed to watch Pulp Fiction. 

So, yes. I see now that there have been innuendos for years. However, I still think that today's songs are far more nasty and insinuating than the ones from my childhood. I understand that what we don't know can't hurt us. So when I watched the movies listed above, or listened to the songs, I had no idea what any of that stuff was, so it didn't matter. But the difference between then and now is that there are a lot of children that do know what the lyrics to today's song mean, or what the movies are really talking about. And they'll tell the others. Maybe the songs and movies have always been sexual, but the ears and eyes listening and seeing were innocent. As society accepts more vulgarity as the norm, the ears and eyes aren't as innocent as they once were.

Footnote: My parents didn't allow my brother or me to watch many movies. In fact, most of my Dirty Dancing and Grease watching days took place at my 60-something babysitter's house. There were some kids there that were 10 years older than me, so I have no doubt that they put the movies in, and my babysitter didn't realize that we shouldn't be watching it. As for Pretty Woman, I think I saw that for the first time with my older cousins. Not entirely sure that my folks know that I saw it.


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