All Sex, All the Time

Well hello there. It’s been awhile since I’ve written anything – the last year or so has been pretty crazy, and I haven’t had a lot of time to write. But a few days ago, I read an article that I really enjoyed and on which I wanted to comment.

In the January 2014 issue of Glamour magazine, actress Rashida Jones wrote an article entitled “The Pornification of Everything,” in which she addresses the growing cultural acceptability of pornographic (or borderline pornographic) behavior by celebrities (and as a consequence, by regular people as well). Here’s a link to the article online: It’s not a long read, and if you have a moment, I highly recommend it.

If you don’t want to read it, here’s the basic gist: Ms. Jones came to the realization that over the past couple of years, pop stars have made it their job to present themselves in as sexual a way as possible. She cites as examples Miley Cyrus twerking on Robin Thicke at the VMAs, Rhianna grinding on a pole in one of her videos, Nicki Minaj wearing pasties as a Halloween costume, and the cover art for one of Lady Gaga’s songs. She points out that this is largely boring – that we basically become desensitized to these oversexualized images. She also states that it feels inauthentic, and is not a true expression of most women’s sexuality but is instead an effort to sell sex and cater to a male idea of what is sexy. The only issue I have with her article is that she does not give a lot of attention to what I believe to be her most salient point – that these woman are role models, whether they want to be or not. Little girls are watching, and what they are seeing is appalling. It is this particular point that I want to expand upon.

These pop stars, particularly ones like Miley Cyrus who got their start on TV shows aimed at children, have large numbers of teenage girls and pre-teen girls as part of their fanbase. Many of these ladies claim to not want to be role models, but regardless of that, millions of these girls look up to them for their fame, their physical beauty, and their talent. And many of those girls do not have a great deal of guidance at home that will say, “That’s inappropriate, turn it off,” when Miley is shaking it on some guy. When a 12-year-old girl sees Rihanna pole-dancing and there’s no one around to talk to her about it in a reasoned way, she internalizes that behavior and thinks to herself (consciously or unconsciously), “Rihanna does it, she’s beautiful and successful and boys like her. I should do that too.” In her mind, there is no distinction between the fact that she is 12 and Rihanna is in her mid-20s. Young girls see images like that and it exposes them to a range of actions and feelings that they are not emotionally or mentally prepared to deal with. Often they deal with them anyway, by emulating what their idols do. This is especially dangerous in today’s social-media-filled world, where photos and videos live forever in the bowels of the internet.

Over the past 5 to 8 years, with the rise of Smartphones, Instagram, and texting/sexting, the number of incidents of underage girls taking and sending inappropriate pictures of themselves and each other has skyrocketed, resulting in a vast increase in child pornography. Basically, we as a culture are very gradually accepting the sexualization of young girls. And often, the girls themselves are the source of this material. They take photos of themselves in compromising positions and send them to friends, boys, or strangers, because Nicki Minaj got her picture taken in nothing but pasties, so why not? We owe it to our daughters, little sisters, and nieces to reject this hypersexualiztion of our culture. In her article, Rashida Jones quotes one of her own Tweets: “Sure, be SEXY, but leave something to the imagination.” I agree. What happened to Old Hollywood sexiness? Sophia Loren could melt a man with one glance, no pasties or pole-dancing required. I’m not saying that we should walk around in burkas, but there is something to be said for a little mystery.

Not everyone shares the same opinion, however. In the article, Ms. Jones mentions that she Tweeted several times about this issue and was accused of “slut-shaming,” misogyny, and being judgmental. She responded to this by saying that “there is a difference between ‘shaming’ and ‘holding someone accountable.'” I agree. These pop stars and actresses have to realize that their actions have consequences beyond themselves. I don’t know a great deal about Jennifer Lawrence (who plays Katniss in the Hunger Games movies), but I saw a quote from her that I absolutely love. In an interview she said, “I’m never going to starve myself for a part. I don’t want little girls to be like, ‘Oh, I want to look like Katniss, so I’m going to skip dinner.'” She gets it. She understands the impact that she has on young girls as a role model and how her behavior affects them. She takes responsibility for that, even though she didn’t ASK to be looked up to as someone to emulate.

I know that our culture is largely in decline. Prior to the fall of Rome, sexual immorality (as well as general immorality) was rampant. It is my hope, however, that for the sake of our young girls, America can get itself together. Maybe she can stop snorting lines off the coffee table, put a shirt on, and make sure she’s wearing panties before she goes out for the night.

11 Things You HAVE to Take to Bonnaroo

Since this year was our first year at Bonnaroo, I decided to write a few posts dedicated to sharing what we learned. We had a good time, but next year, we’ll definitely be more prepared, and hopefully what we learned can help you too. So, here’s my first installment of helpful Bonnaroo posts. This one talks about important stuff that you need to take with you when you go. Most of the items on here are things you HAVE to have, and some of them are things that you don’t NEED but that you will really regret not having with you. I hope this list makes your Bonnaroo trip safer and more fun!

1. Water YOU MUST STAY HYDRATED!! I can’t emphasize this enough. You’ll be wandering around in the sun for 8, 12, maybe 16 hours a day for 4 days, and you run the risk of heat stroke when you don’t drink enough water. It’s pretty serious stuff – people have died at Bonnaroo from heat stroke because they didn’t drink enough water. And yes, it needs to be WATER. Not soda, not beer – water. You can drink those too, but agua is your best buddy out there in Centeroo during the day. The nice folks who put on the festival every year have free well water there, you just have to bring an empty bottle to fill up. It doesn’t hurt to being plenty of your own water too. The well water there is kind of hit-or-miss. Sometimes it’s delicious, and other times it’s full of sulfur and smells like rotten eggs. Also, it’s not a real great idea to drink a lot of alcohol while you’re there. My husband found this out first hand. He drank about 6 beers after we got our camp all set up on Wednesday night, and the next morning he had a terrible hangover because he got hot and sweaty (read: dehydrated) while we were sleeping. He was pretty miserable the next day. So bring and drink plenty of water!

2. Sunscreen and a wide-brimmed hat Yes, these two items count as one thing. While a lack of sunscreen/hat will not kill you (at least not immediately), a rough case of sunburn will ruin your whole weekend. This is a lesson I learned during Senior Week at the beach after I graduated from high school. You DO NOT want to be battling second degree burns while sleeping on the ground in a 110 degree tent. Cover yourself and your friends with LOTS of sunscreen, and then put on a hat, preferably one with a wide brim. The hat is a necessity if you have close-cut hair (like a buzz cut), a stubborn part that makes itself apparent even when hair is brushed back into a ponytail (I think I’m the only person with this problem), or ears. If you do not have any of these things, feel free to skip the hat. Sunscreen is not optional, regardless of whether you already have a tan or not. Peeling, blistered skin is not cute, and neither is skin cancer.

3. Appropriate clothing For women, this pretty much means bikinis and a loose, short skirt (knee-length or higher is the most comfortable). This is no time to be self-conscious about fat calves or jiggly thighs. I had a pair of guys swim trunks that I was wearing the first day, and I gave those up pretty quickly for a $20 skirt I bought at a vendor and wore for the next 3 days (Gross? Yes. But I was cool and comfortable!). Also, bring a t-shirt or thin long-sleeve shirt in case you start to get sunburned or for when it cools down at night (60 degrees feels pretty cold after being in 100 degree heat all day). For guys, my husband recommends thin, lightweight t-shirts that fit close around the neck to prevent sunburn on the upper chest. Oh, and kilts. No, I am not joking. We saw several guys in skirts and sarongs, and they were not exactly the cross-dressing type. You want as much airflow and circulation in the uh, basement as possible because a) it’s hot as crap and b) you’re probably not going to be taking many showers, so smell is kind of a concern. He is planning to buy a sport kilt for the next time around. Leave anything at home that you don’t want getting trashed. Ladies, it’s not a bad idea to leave any valuable jewelry (including wedding and engagement rings) at home so they don’t get lost. Other things you DO NOT want to wear: jeans, anything black, furry Santa suits, Santa hats, trenchcoats, sweatpants, etc. Yes, I saw people wearing all of those things. I damn near had a heat stroke just LOOKING at them.

4. Appropriate footwear In order to really cover your bases here, you need 3 types of shoes: Flip-flops for playing in the fountain and wandering around Centeroo, tennis shoes for walking to and from your camp and for Centeroo when your feet get tired (and they WILL get tired, believe me!), and rain boots for when the farm turns into 700 acres of mud. It almost always rains, but amazingly it didn’t rain this year so I didn’t need my rain boots. It WAS crazy dusty though, and our shoes got pretty gross. Don’t take a brand new pair of white Nikes out there and expect them to come back in good shape, because they definitely won’t!

5. Toilet paper I have to give props to the Roo staff and organizers – keeping enough port-o-johns stocked, serviced, and (relatively) clean for 80,000 people is no easy feat, but they did a pretty good job. Even still, you are going to want to take your own toilet paper with you for several reasons. You may end up in one without toilet paper (not a fun situation when you’ve already sat down to do your thing and you realize there’s no tp), the toilet paper might be wet (yes, it IS urine, and it is so gross. Come on guys, aim a little bit better please), and frankly, port-o-john tp is not the softest kind in the world. Your butt will thank you for providing it with softer, gentler toilet paper.

6. Baby wipes These things are BOSS when you can’t bathe for a few days. We would get back to our camp at night and use these to wipe all the dust and sunscreen off our arms and legs. They also freshen up the nether regions quite nicely. It’s not a full shower, but it beats the heck out of going to bed with crusty feet and stinking arm pits every night. You definitely need to take these with you when you go!

7. Canopy/tarp to go over your campsite I saw this listed on a few other packing lists for Bonnaroo, so I asked my husband if we had a canopy to take with us. He said no, but he didn’t think we would need to get one anyway. This was a HIGHLY regrettable decision. Your tent is going to be approximately 110 degrees F by 8 am each morning, so sleeping in isn’t really an option, and there’s not much going on concert-wise until 12. Basically, you’ll be sitting at your campsite eating breakfast, cleaning up, getting your stuff together, and just relaxing for a few hours. Unfortunately, without a canopy, you will be doing your “relaxing” under a boiling hot sun. On Friday morning, we went to the Camping World store they had set up there and bought a canopy. It was MUCH more comfortable after that. Added bonus: you can move it over your tent at night and it helps keep your tent cool in the morning.

8. Camera You are going to want to remember this, trust me. And you will especially need photographic documentation if you are, shall we say, in an altered state of consciousness for most of the festival. If you are prone to losing stuff, I recommend taking a disposable camera; that way if you lose it, no big deal.

9. Sheet/blanket/low-sitting chair This is for sitting on in Centeroo during concerts or when you need a break and you want to park your carcass under a shade tree (if you can find one) and have a snack. I went with a sheet because it was easy to fold up and stuff in my backpack. It didn’t rain this year (amazingly), so my sheet didn’t get all muddy. If it’s been raining, you might want to take a chair. The downside of the chair, however, is that it’s bulkier and harder to carry.

10. Flashlight/headlamp Centeroo is pretty well-lit and so are most of the campground areas. But the one area that is NOT well-lit is the port-o-johns. Believe me, you are GOING to want to see what is on those seats before you sit down. Like I said, they do a pretty good job of keeping up with the cleaning and pumping of the toilets, but drunk guys have bad aim and… well… I’ve found some other incredibly gross stuff on the seats of pot-o-potties before. Just trust me on the flashlight. You will be SO glad you brought it.

11. Bag or backpack You’re going to be lugging a lot of stuff to Centeroo each day (sunscreen, water bottles, shirt, money, toilet paper, etc), and you’re going to need something to carry it in. I recommend a backpack because it zips and it spreads the weight evenly over both shoulders.

Next time: A list of things you DON’T need, but that you think you will.

Bonnaroo 2011

This past weekend (well, really from Wednesday night until Monday morning) my husband (Sloth), my best friend (Z), and I went to Bonnaroo for the first time, and we had a blast. We saw some great bands, ate some tasty food, and got super freaking dirty. I went back and forth between really looking forward to it and then dreading it. I knew it was going to be outrageously hot, and since I’m a pasty Irish kid I tend to roast like a Thanksgiving turkey if I set foot in the sun for more than 10 minutes. Excessive heat and second degree burns did not sound like a terribly fun experience, so by Tuesday (the day before we left) I was having some serious doubts about what I was getting into. We only live about 2 hours from Manchester, TN (official home of the Roo), so we spent most of Wednesday getting packed up and running some last-minute errands.

We left about 9:00 that night, and made pretty good time getting down there. We were cruising down I-24 East, and when we got around Exit 110, our hearts sank – there was a line of cars as far as we could see on the other side of the road. We kept going and noticed that all of the exits on our side of the road were blocked off. Finally we saw a sign that said “Bonnaroo traffic use Exit 127.” I’m not even joking – that traffic jam on the other side was backed up for SEVENTEEN MILES. There were a few different entrances though, so we ended up going through some Deliverance-worthy back roads until we got to the back of the farm. We got parked and started setting up our camp, which didn’t take long. It was just 2 tents and a little area for our chairs. We didn’t really get unpacked and settled in until about 2:30 am, and at that point I was pretty tired. I laid down, but it was pretty loud because everyone was partying and setting up their camp, so I really didn’t fall asleep until close to 6. Sloth and Z stayed up and had a couple of beers and met our neighbors, and they also went to bed around 6.

Our neighbors seemed pretty decent, though after the first night we didn’t really talk much (probably because our little group didn’t smoke weed, and their groups did). On one side, we had 2 girls and a guy who were all really quiet, and on the other side we had 3 guys who seemed really outgoing. Mellow stoners and party stoners, respectively. Anyway, we went to sleep around 6, and like I said, it’s so hot in your tent by 7:30 or 8 that you can’t sleep, so I was up at 7:30 thirsting to death. We got up, ate some breakfast, and then went to Centeroo when it opened up at noon. There wasn’t a whole lot going on yet, because most people didn’t actually get to the festival until Thursday night and there weren’t many shows yet either. We just checked out the vendors and food and the mushroom and waterslides, then we went back to our camp.

On Friday, we saw Bela Fleck and the Flecktones. Z saw Matt & Kim, and then we met back up for The Decemberists. I left my indie kid companions to their show and I wandered around Centeroo. I caught the end of Atmosphere, and then we met back up for My Morning Jacket and Primus. Primus was pretty awesome because in the middle of the show they had parasailers fly overhead and drop glitter on the crowd. After Primus, we went to What Stage for Arcade Fire. That was my husband’s favorite show of the weekend. After Arcade Fire, we went back to camp.

We started Saturday off with Black Joe Lewis and the Honeybears, then Z went to see The Low Anthem at That Tent. Sloth and I went to see the “You Choose the Cover” Rolling Stone showdown between Lelia Broussard and The Sheepdogs at This Tent (I liked the Sheepdogs best – Canadian Southern Rock? Yes, please). After that, we got some lunch and played under the mushroom for a few minutes, then we met back up with Z at That Tent for Portugal. The Man. My two indie friends were all excited about The Black Keys, so I went over to What Stage with them for that, but left early so I could get a good seat for Buffalo Springfield. I really enjoyed them. After they went off, I met Sloth to see Dr. John. Z had already gone back to camp, and after Dr. John ended, we went back too.

On Sunday, Sloth and I went to see G. Love and Special Sauce, while Z went to The Head & The Heart. G. Love did a good set and we had great seats, so that was a fun show. We met back up with Z, got some lunch, and saw Aunt Martha at the On Tap Lounge. Then Z and Sloth went to see Cold War Kids and I went to see Gregg Allman. He did a good show, but he came on kind of late, and I had to leave early for Robert Plant and the Band of Joy. That show was good too, but I had to leave early for Superjam. That was pretty frustrating, because Robert Plant and the Band of Joy, The Strokes, Explosions in the Sky, and Superjam all overlapped. Sloth wanted to see Explosions in the Sky, but Z and I convinced him to come to Superjam, since it’s a Bonnaroo staple. After Superjam, we headed over to What Stage for Widespread Panic, the last show of the festival. That was pretty awesome – jam band music, LED hula hoops and girls with crazy hula hoop skills, light shows, etc. After Widespread Panic, we were pretty exhausted and surprisingly chilly, so we went back to camp and went to bed.

We left Monday morning, and I was a little sad. Bonnaroo is fun because it’s so divorced from reality. It’s full of music, shiny lights, glitter from parasailers, and the childlike joy of Ferris wheels and waterslides (and also drugs, if you choose to partake). It’s a little sad to come back to reality, but reality has indoor plumbing and air condition, which is nice. It’s definitely a fun experience though, and we’ll probably go back next year.

Memphis in May

A couple of weekends ago, my neighbors, my husband, my best friend and I all drove out to Memphis for the Beale Street Music Festival, which is part of the month-long Memphis in May celebration. This particular music festival consisted of 3 days of absurdly large alcoholic drinks, enough mud to accommodate a half dozen pig farms, a cloud of pot smoke that extended halfway down the Mississippi, and some pretty awesome bands of all genres. Some of the more well-known bands included Cake, Stone Temple Pilots, B.O.B, Jason Mraz, Cage the Elephant, Everclear, Ludacris, Drowning Pool, Godsmack, Ziggy Marley, Gregg Allman, and Sublime with Rome(!!!). We saw Cake the first night, and we saw some of STP but I started feeling like I was going to pass out (no, NOT from alcohol, thank you) so I had to go sit down and get something to eat. The next day we spent drinking obscene amounts of alcohol (well, I tried, but my body doesn’t like booze, so I didn’t drink much). After my companions were good and hammered, we wandered from Beale St. down to the park for the shows. The plan was to see Ludacris, but due to excessive alcohol consumption on the part of my friends, we didn’t make it. Probably just as well.

On Sunday (the last day), we saw Ziggy Marley, Greg Allman, the Avett Brothers, Cee Lo Green, and (most importantly to me) Sublime with Rome. During Sublime’s set, a very drunk gentleman in front of me turned around and said, “We killed bin Laden! Fuckin’ America!” My husband and I glanced at each other skeptically and went back to enjoying the show. About 20 minutes later, a girl who looked substantially more sober than the other guy turned to one of her friends and said basically the same thing. I still wasn’t 100% sold. Maybe there was some kind of fake news story going around, so I checked a few news sites on my husband’s phone, and sure enough, we had gotten him. So basically, it was an awesome night, and an awesome weekend. In a couple of weeks we’re going to Bonnaroo. I hope it can meet the high standard set by Memphis in May!

I hate my job so I quit

This past Thursday was my last day at Large Retail Store and I am SO excited! It wasn’t that I hated what I did. I enjoyed working in jewelry and I liked the ladies I worked with. I just had some problems with my supervisors – mainly that they wouldn’t listen to us when we tried to explain things to them about our department, they treated us like we were children and treated our department like it wasn’t important, etc. So, I put in my two weeks notice, and they all acted shocked that I was leaving. Instead of hawking diamonds, I will now be battling mouthy teenagers 5 days a week, but I will have weekends, nights, and holidays off, which is a nice change. And it may lead to a permanent teaching job, which is even nicer! So, in celebration of me quitting Large Retail Store, I have a riddle for you: What do punks, rednecks, and gangsters all have in common?

Give up? They all hate their jobs. Here – I have proof!

My thoughts exactly, sirs.

A Shameful Secret

I have a confession to make. I have already told a couple of friends, but I think it’s time to go public with this revelation. My husband will probably want a divorce, but I can no longer hold in this secret. I am coming out of the closet. (No, not THAT closet. This is a family blog. Jeez.) I… like Miranda Lambert. Wait – it gets worse. I realized that I like a lot of country music.

You see, I grew up in a pretty redneck town. Mechanicsville, Virginia (affectionately referred to as MechanHICKSville) is approximately 15 minutes from Richmond International Raceway (RIR), home of many NASCAR races. If I had to throw out a conservative estimate, I would say 60% of the vehicles in my town have some kind of Dale Earnhardt (junior or senior [8 or 3, if you’re familiar with car numbers]) memorabilia on them. If you want to broaden your search to “general NASCAR drivers,” I would say your odds increase to 75%. I’m fairly certain that our whole town went into a week-long mourning period when Dale, Sr. died. My middle school was named after Stonewall Jackson, the Civil War general, and my high school was named after Robert E. Lee (general of the Confederate Army) & Jefferson Davis (President of the Confederacy). We had an entire row of parking spaces at the high school dedicated to jacked-up pickup trucks, unofficially titled “Redneck Row.” One time I saw a kid come to school with a bale of hay in the back of his truck. Across from the high school, there’s a shopping center that contains the following: a cigarette store, an ABC store, a sex shop, and a sports bar. This is a town that celebrates the death and resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ with a Good Friday mud bog, for Pete’s sake. Are you getting the picture? It’s RED.

Anyway, I grew up listening to country music. My parents weren’t super hillbilly or anything, but we did listen to country, in addition to oldies, classic rock, and the “light rock/elevator music” station. As a kid I gravitated toward country music (though I did like other stuff my parents listened to as well). My absolute favorite was Shania Twain. To my 4th grade mind, she was just the best. I had “The Woman in Me” and “Come On Over” on cassette, and my mom even hunted down her very first album for me, “Shania Twain,” which was released before she hit it big. As I moved into middle school, the Dixie Chicks became one of my favorites as well. I liked a lot of other songs and artists too, but those were my favorites and the only ones I had on albums. Once I hit 8th grade though, I decided I did not want to listen to country music anymore. I had started hanging out with a group of kids who were more into rock, and all the boys I had crushes on (all bad kids, I might add) liked rock, so I also liked rock. I gave up on country, ridiculed the redneck kids in my high school (who, in turn, ridiculed the group of outcasts I hung around with – this is all very well explained in the movie SLC Punk and I highly recommend it because it’s one of the best movies ever), and vowed that I would not turn into a Mechanicsville hick.

Up until about 2 years ago, I held strong – no country, only rock. But, one day while I was on vacation with my parents in Florida, we went in a shop that was playing “Ol Red” by Blake Shelton and I remembered really enjoying that song. When I got home, I downloaded it. No big deal, it was just one song. At some point about a year or so later, I heard “Gunpowder and Lead” by Miranda Lambert and “Boondocks” by Little Big Town, though I don’t recall how or where. I also downloaded these. Still not a big deal. Everyone has their guilty pleasures, right? And then I started driving out to see my husband in Tennessee, where I discovered that there are long stretches of road where the only radio stations for a hundred miles are all country. Listening to these (because I had no other choice! There was nothing else to listen to!), I heard some of the songs from the early 1990s that reminded me of my childhood. I specifically remember hearing “Maybe it was Memphis” by Pam Tillis and “10000 Angels” and “Guys do it all the Time” by Mindy McCready. So, I downloaded those too. I still would not admit that I had a problem. It was only 5 or 6 songs. But the more I drove back and forth from Virginia to Tennessee, the more country I listened to.

At some point over the past 6 months, someone that I work with posted “Only Prettier” by Miranda Lambert on Facebook, and I took the bait. I thought the video was cute and kind of funny, and so was the song. Later, a friend of mine admitted to liking country music (especially Shania Twain and the Dixie Chicks!), and we had a whole conversation that involved us sending country videos back and forth to each other. This would not have been that odd, I guess, but my friend is black, and I was fairly certain that black people who listened to country music did not exist. Anyway, I decided that if she could admit to liking it, then I could too. About a week ago, I spend upwards of 6 hours on Youtube, looking for country music videos from the 1990s. I found dozens of songs that reminded me of being a little kid at my grandma’s house and waking up at 5 am in her living room to the sound of her making breakfast and the radio playing Shenandoah and Blackhawk. So I started downloading – PAYING to download these songs. I found a ton of songs by Blackhawk, Diamond Rio, Sawyer Brown, John Anderson, Shenandoah, and numerous other artists that I had totally forgotten about. I felt genuine excitement when I rediscovered them. Tonight, after I got off from work, I went to the electronics section of Large Retail Store and purchased Miranda Lambert’s CD “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend.” I will probably buy the rest of her albums when I have a little more spending money.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not abandoning rock, though most new rock leaves a lot to be desired. Maybe I’m just having a bout of nostalgia for my hometown and my childhood. Maybe I just want something different to listen to. I’m not sure why I’ve gone back to my first musical love, but it appears that I have, at least for the time being. It’s perhaps not as serious as it sounds. Incubus is still firmly entrenched in my car CD player, and as of right now I do not have a country music station programmed into my radio presets. We’ll see where this goes, I guess. This ends my confession.

Not the official video, but well done. It really speaks to the need for all women to be well-trained in the use of a large firearm.

Dear Sloth husband, please don’t file for divorce when you come home. Love, Sheep wife.

Things I’ve Learned From Rock ‘n Roll

Rock ‘n roll has a bad rap. People say it promotes sex, drugs, and violence, which, ok, sometimes it DOES. BUT, I don’t think that view really gives you the whole picture. I’ve learned a lot of valuable things from some of my favorite songs, and I thought I would share the wisdom with you. So, here we go:

1. “You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometime, you just might find, you get what you need.” – The Rolling Stones. If and when I ever get my own classroom, I’m going to put this on a big banner and put it over my chalkboard as a reminder to my students (and myself!).

2. “Life is too short, so love the one ya got, cuz ya might get run over or ya might get shot.” – Sublime. I can’t put it more succinctly than that.

3. “Hold on loosely, but don’t let go. If you cling too tightly, you’re gonna lose control.” – .38 Special.

4. “Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end.” – Semisonic.

5. “All you need is love. Love is all you need!” – The Beatles.

6. “When I find myself in times of trouble, mother Mary comes to me, speaking words of wisdom – Let it be.” – The Beatles.

7. “Don’t stop believin’!” – Journey. I’m not sure what the guys of Journey had in mind when they wrote this song – my guess would be love, but I don’t really know. Loss of faith in whatever you believe in is a tragedy. Everyone has to believe in SOMETHING, right?

8. “You should make amends with you, if only for better health. But if you really want to live, why not try and make yourself?” – Incubus.
This whole song is pretty good advice, but I think this is the main gist of its message.

9. “The day you were born, you were born free. That is your privilege.” – Incubus. More a friendly reminder than a piece of advice, but all the same, I think it’s a good thing to keep in mind.

10. “Hold on to 16 as long as you can. Changes come around real soon, make us women and men.” – John Mellencamp

Bonus Songs!
1. “Politically Correct” by SR-71. If I were going to run for a public office, this would be my theme song.

2. “Simple Kind of Man” by Lynyrd Skynyrd. A whole song full of nothing but excellent advice.

What have YOU learned from the wise folks of the music world?