Sunday, July 24, 2005

Lullaby Lame-Ass

Lea's bedtime routine is always the same: use the potty, brush teeth, climb into bed, read a book, turn on the noisemaker (I keep it on "white noise") and turn out the light. Then the real work begins. I am either required to 1) make up a story "about candy" or 2) scratch her back or 3) sing songs. On a really tough night, I have to do all three. Tonight, though, was just singing. I have what I imagine is a pretty basic parenting repertoire of songs: Hush Little Baby, You Are My Sunshine, on-the-spot concocted lyrics for Brahms' lullaby (this is remarkably easy to do; try it), etc.

So I cycled through those and was just starting again with Hush Little Baby when she informed me that I'd already sung it. Not wanting to disappoint her with re-runs I—oh, yes I did—sang every word of Leaving on a Jet Plane which, thanks to my third grade teacher who loved to whip out her guitar and teach us really corny songs, I have been able to do on command (though not at karaoke; you all know how i feel about that) for most of my life.

My daughter was in awe. In fact, her face looked just like it looks in this picture. Which isn't exactly awe, is it? It's more like are you serious? Regardless, she wanted more.

I couldn't think of anything. The two older ones used to love Killing Me Softly, but Lea finds it a touch morbid. Or morose. Or morobid. But just as I was about to give up and beg her to go to sleep, please oh please just please go to sleep because I don't want to miss a minute of Six Feet Under, the following words came melodically flowing from betwixt my lightly glossed lips:

If I could, I'd like to be a great big movie star
overnight sensation; I'd drive a big expensive car
I would buy you anything your little heart desires
these things I do 'cuz I'm ___________.

(First comment-ator to fill in the blank wins a QuickTime movie of me singing the song dressed just like the Stylistics in this photo.) **

Big hit, that one. "Did you just write that one, Mama?"

"Yes, boo, of course."

"Can you write another one? Right now?"

"Sure. You ready?"


"Step right up, hurry hurry, before the show begins, my friends
Stand in line, get your tickets, I hope you will attend
It'll only cost you fifty cents to see what life has done to those like you and me...

Well, let me just tell you right now, people: never, ever, ever sing Sideshow to your child at bedtime unless you're fully prepared to answer fifteen minutes' worth of questions about heartbreak, unrequited love, and general romantic misery. See the girl who has lost the only love she's ever had/she hurts so bad, so bad, so bad. What is wrong with me?! See the man who's been crying for a million years/so many tears, so many tears. Idiot.

She will wake at two o'clock in the morning, sobbing. And it'll be all. my. fault.


**I'm such a liar.


Gura said...

wow, it's just like the 98.1 song quizzes. is it, "I'm crazy in love with you" with that nice note jump when singing "you" then again, I butcher lyrics, which is why I need the teleprompter action of karaoke.

As much as I love the Stylistics (Betcha By Golly, Wow! I do), we decided to put "Sideshow" on the banned from our wedding list, because it is just one of the most DEPRESSING SONGS EVER! We heard it played at my cousin's wedding, and I'm like, this is SO SAD! We want songs to evoke years of positive requited love. (and yes, had to put Ocho-Ocho on the banned list, because adults dancing Ocho-Ocho is just not cute nor endearing, it's disturbing, like swan necks disturbing.)

the wily filipino said...

I won a QuickTime movie! It's "stone in love with you!"

I used to do the nursery rhyme route as well until I realized it was boring both me and her -- either that, or Izzy would ask for "the quiet songs." After that, it became easier to dig into my own pop repertoire: The Beatles' "In My Life," Kermit's "The Rainbow Connection," Ernie's "Imagination" ("Here in the middle of imagination..." -- that Joe Raposo could sure write some great songs), Nat King Cole's "Red Sails in the Sunset" (which my dad would sing to me), The Beatles' "Good Night" (it's her new favorite), and yes, "Hush Little Baby" and "You Are My Sunshine."

I loved reading your post. Izzy has pretty much the same routine -- bargaining about the number of books a la Olivia, then turning on the music box, then singing *and* rubbing her back. How old is Lea again?

weez said...


I sang the whole thing to get to that line.

damn damn damn.

I sing "Baby Mine"...but not like the mother elephant in Dumbo, more like Bonnie Rait's version. They also like "Stay Awake" and "Winnie-the-Pooh".

I'd do jazz standards, but they don't dig it.

Nothing works on Gabriel. I have considered sangria.

ver said...

Sunny wins! But Sunny, you'd be so disappointed to know that Lea (she turned 3 in March) knows every word of "She Will Be Loved." Hahahahahahaha!

And...Weez I lovethat song from Dumbo. If I'm PMSing, it makes me cry. Of course, so do Oreo cookie commercials, so I suppose that's no big deal. I just thought of that song from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang...what is it?..."Hush-a-bye Mountain" or something? Thas a good one, too.

Gura, good call on ix-naying "Sideshow" and "Ocho-Ocho." I have to admit, though, I didn't know about the latter until just a few years ago. What kind of Filipino am I?!!!

the wily filipino said...

NOOOOOOOOO!!!!! Have you no shame, corrupting young impressionable minds? =)

At least it wasn't "This Love" [shudder].

For that you need to do some good in the world -- a Quicktime vid of you in full "Betcha By Golly Wow" mode just might suffice.

(I love that song from "Dumbo" too -- Weez, you probably own that "Stay Awake" compilation then?)

ver said...

But Wily...

how dare you say that my behavior's unacceptable/so condescending unnecessarily critical/i have the tendency of getting very physical/so watch your step cause if I do you'll need a miracle...