July 7, 2009

our hip little songster

Man you guys, you've been staring at a post about corn for what, like a week now? What a pain.

So, funny thing happened a few weeks ago. We noticed Guthrie singing along to our music. Like really singing along. The song was "Gone Daddy Gone" by the Violent Femmes. It was cute. She was all 'don dada don, yuve dis don' [gone daddy gone, love is gone for those of you who don't speak Gus] and clapping and all. She can't really sing along to "Blister in the Sun" yet though. It's tough.

For awhile now we've been dealing with her being bossy about music in the car. It used to be all Snack Time and Lori Berkner. Now it's Indigo Girls and Ida Marie, the Grateful Dead and Ani DiFranco. We let her pick out the music most days in our house and man if she doesn't grow another inch soon I'm going to have to move the 'E' shelf someplace else because the Eels are getting old.

Here's the deal though. We don't buy our music at Wal-Mart. Which is to say that none of it is censored. Which is to say that as she's rocking out to Ani's 'Napoleon' she's hearing some words I would like her to not have heard for awhile yet. You know?

However, and both John and I feel pretty strongly about this, I believe that words are powerful and not inherently good or bad. I would so much rather teach my kids about the appropriate and respectful use of words than to just say, no, you can't say that.

And I feel like it was appropriate when we drove home the other night after the big storm and got to our street with 3 trees down on top of cars and the words "Oh Shit!" flew out of both our mouths -- err make that out of all three of our mouths. And yet I cringe. Because I'm not one of those moms that thinks it's cute when kids swear. I know she was just copying us. I know I'm not going to censor myself in a situation like that. So what do we do? Say 'that's a mommy/daddy word until your language usage is advanced enough to use it in proper context'? That'll totally fly. And I know I'm not going to start music shopping at Wal-Mart so that she can hear bleeps instead of words because, somehow if the intent is still there I feel like the word is still there.
Not to mention how uncomfortable we all are with censorship.

This will be one of those fluid parenting things for us won't it? It's weird to be dealing with it so early though. In the meantime I'm going to enjoy my girl's growing taste in music and how she like pop and punk because she can bounce to it. How she likes the Amy Ray songs best. How she does 'ballet' to the Grateful Dead.

Beware the bridge though. Her two year old mind cannot wrap around the bridge - that it's still part of the song, but it sounds a little different. It is frequently the cause for tears. She's certain that we've somehow betrayed her and changed the song. I feel like that won't get resolved until she's got that whole abstract thought thing down. It's complicated.


daydreamer said...

hahaha... I know EXACTLY what you are talking about it! ;)

Melissa said...

Wait until they are older! Zoe think "banana hammock" is a great phrase and wants to share it with everyone. And thanks to our friend Ryan, we had to come up with a very creative definition to what magic mushrooms are! We have the same thing about music though because we listen to anything and everything in this house and when I realize the girls are totally paying attention to a song (about 70% of the time) I just skip to the next song. We are currently into Santogold, Kings of Leon and M.I.A. (talk about music diversity!)


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