Saturday, February 21, 2009

Sodomy is Sometimes Inappropriate

Listening to our "Hair" cd this afternoon with Hedgie, we skipped over a certain song, and the careful omission brought back a memory from my childhood. Enjoy...

The time: 1979, after seeing "Hair" with our parents. Seized with excitement over the electrifying soundtrack, which we listened to every chance we got.

The place: Our grandparent's formal, very formal, living room.

The characters: Me, 9 years old, my sister, 5, and our grandparents, grandpa in the full suit he always wore even at home, my grandma decked out from girdle to stockings to conservative dress from B. Altman's in NYC.

The offense: We decided to serenade said grandparents with our rendition of "Sodomy," clearly enunciating each word in our piping children's voices so that they would get the full effect.

If you're not familiar with this magnificent maesterwerk, check it out (from the movie, not the play):

And if you would like to sing along:


Father, why do these words sound so nasty?

Can be fun
Join the holy orgy
Kama Sutra

The aftermath: I'll let you imagine for yourselves.

But hey, it was the '70s after all.


savannah said...

OH.MY.GAWD!!!! i love that story, sugar. but tell me this, what did your grandparents say to your parents? any idea? too damn funny!


Sarah said...

Oh my. Now the question is did you know what the words meant or did you just sing them with no clue?

And how many shades of red did your grandparents turn?

HoodChick said...

Heck, even I'm embarrassed just thinking about it. Although my grandparents probably would have laughed their asses off.

Donn Coppens said...

Mine would not have been amused and I certainly would have hated my stint at Military School.

When you look back at these lyrics it seems that they were written for shock value and boundary bending attention.

Pervderasty?! Puh-leeze!
This was obviously just thrown in to make the Priesthood nervous.
Sometimes it's hard to remember how far the line needs to be yanked before it snaps back to the middle.

Jimmy Bastard said...

I noted with interest your use of the word "Sometimes"

I also wonder if my eyebrows will ever return from their currrent elevated position?

Karen ^..^ said...

OH MY GOD. If it would have been me? I would not be here today. LMAO!!!!!

Oh, my god, I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall!!

You HAVE to tell us all what happened. Good lord.

Megan said...

Well, my maternal grandmother would have sent us to our rooms after the first word. My paternal grandmother would have listened politely to the end, clapped, and then had some serious discussions with my mother...

I didn't really know my grandfathers...

This is a great story and oh I laughed!

Anonymous said...

When i was a little girl- actually even when i was a teenager, if there was even a little bit of kissing happening on TV, my grandmother would switch it off and suggest a jigsaw puzzle....
In your situation she probably would not have known what the words meant anyway!

Leah said...

Savannah: My grandpa actually had a good sense of humor, my grandma none...but neither was amused in this case...they let us finish the song, then asked us if we knew what those words meant, and we said, "not really" and they said "those are some very naughty words that little girls shouldn't know"...and then said nothing else until my folks got back, then they took them aside...I could see my parents trying not to laugh...but we did get a mild lecture later. But, as the years have passed, I've become more and more and more embarrassed!!!! In retrospect, you understand.

Leah said...

Sarah--you know, we didn't really know what they meant, but we realized they were "naughty." Just not how naughty.

My grandparents were red, then white, then grey.

Leah said...

Hoodchick: my grandparents didn't laugh, but my parents certainly did.

Donn: if taken in its original context, that song was certainly intended to shock and nothing else. Part of its inimitable charm...

Jimmy: certainly only "sometimes"! After all, there's a time and a place for nearly everything, right?

Megan: listening politely (but not clapping) and then having a serious talk with the 'rents is pretty much what happened. But it is funny, no?

Cinnamon: I'm not one hundred percent convinced that my grandma knew every one of those things either, certainly not "kama sutra" and "holy orgy." But you know, we'll never know whether they were all much more sophisticated than we imagined...

Karen: see above for the next part of the was actually a bit sis and I went to a "progressive" school, and my grandparents probably had to make their peace with a great deal of what we came home parents, who got their parenting skills in the School of 1970s Liberal Brooklyn, thought it was funny. I think I'd laugh if Hedgie came home singing that, but I'd probably be much less amused if I thought she knew what most of that meant!! Yoicks!!!!

MJ said...

You could have performed "Hashish" as an encore...

APC, Alcohol
Cigarettes, shoe polish, cough syrup, peyote
Equinol, dexamil, camposine, Chemadrine,
Thorazine, trilophon, dexadrine, benzedrine, methedrine
S-E-X and Y-O-U, Wow!

just bob said...

Hi Leah.

Leah said...

MJ: Sarge and I like to duet on that one every chance we get.

Hi Bob.

Suzanne said...

Honey...and won, it won, it won!!!

Man on Wire!!! Hip, hip hurray! And if I move back home and you drive up 28 after getting off the thruway on the way to the Adirondacks, you'll meet him. You'll love him. Trust me.

Hi baby. Sometimes life is just really good.


Skeeter said...

Hi Leah,

Wow, that must have been quite an eye opener for the gramps. Can only imagine the look the on their faces.

Best wishes,


Ponita in Real Life said...

I saw Hair when I was 13... no adults, just a bunch of teenagers. I don't think my parents ever knew any of the songs!

I certainly didn't know what any of those words meant back then either! I was just amazed at all the naked people on stage!! ;-)

Joyful Jo said...

I was 22 yrs old when this was on. I still have the record album. I played it non stop those days. I was too naive to know what all those words meant but just liked the songs tunes. Now i think how innocent i was.