So, it is a fundamental, basic human right for a parent to despise the musical tastes of their small ones.
My Poppy hated The Beatles while my Pa hated Creedence. And both my parents hated The Smiths. But despite their hatred, my ancestors gave power to the tween voice within me. They helped me purchase many a compilation vinyl and let me not only hot-house myself to every Morrissey lyric ever penned, but walk around wearing all black and looking gloomy for about 3 years.
Today, I now put up with the musical tastes of my own small ones. Which means listening to commercial radio stations in our car, helping them to purchase “so fresh” CDs and providing portable devices with access data so they can plug their chosen notes into their ears:-
So our house is now filled with shit music.
Subtlety runs thin in my blood line, and again just as my ancestors have done before me, I can’t help but tell my small ones my opinion regarding their musical tastes. It involves audible groaning and words such as, “I’d rather cut my arms off than listen to this.” Or, “he sounds like a cat drowning.” And occasionally my favourite, as passed down to me by my predecessors, “You know this isn’t real music.”
But to my small ones, it is very real. And they continue to like tuneless pop very much. And so for my small ones, I avoid cutting myself and instead try to use Jedi mind tricks in attempt to block their loved, incessant and synthesised shit music out of my head. I try to hear Justin Beiber as simply background noise.
Which is very, very hard.
On Thursday, my head was full of snot meaning that my Jedi mind-powers were weak. It was the last week of school holidays where apparently I had said that hot dogs could be eaten for every meal and I’d unwittingly caved in and agreed to a new family pet request.
I believe we are now getting 3 ferrets next Spring.
It was Thursday where snotty, defeated and outnumbered, I found myself locked within commercial radio-land in our car and began crying to a song. Not because of my snotty head, or my feral smalls, or the random doing 70km in a hundred zone. But because of the lyrics of the shit tween song that somehow broke through my Jedi forcefield. Within the danish pop, I heard a parent of small ones flash his life from seven to sixty in less than 4 minutes. It took a verse less than a minute for him to age 3 decades. He didn’t mention being 40 years old. Or 50. He just smashed on through to a seniors card. While listening to him doing so, I felt my own years of middle age slide. As if I too were slipping fast to the other side. Skimming 40, skipping 50. Wondering if I too at 60 would be cold.
In the short space of hearing him age, I too felt myself suddenly getting real. Through quiet tears I asked my smalls, “will you come and visit me once or twice a month when I get old?”
-“You don’t see Nana and Poppy once a month”-
Think heart openers, twisted inversions and nadi shodhana.
Time can be an objective and a subjective thing. Just as there will always be 60 seconds in a minute, there will always be 60 minutes in an hour. Always 24 hours in a day and 7 days in a week.
And sometimes, 24 hours seems like a lifetime. Like when your waiting for the results. Or for the magic. Or when your counting done the sleeps until your love comes home. But sometimes, 24 hours passes in a blink. As you slip from one place to another. From one time to another. From one age to another. And before you know it, within a 30 second verse of 4 minute shit pop, some Danish dude has made you wake up to 60. Where you realise you forgot to ring your Mum and Dad. That you forgot to hug your small ones tight.
And that you forgot so many moments in your life because you were too busy on monotone to notice them.
Buried deep within ourselves are many moments in time. They appear as our past as our memories. Or as dreams and fantasies as our future. Time is the matrix where our change takes place. And it’s our own experience of change which forces us to focus on the realm of what this really means for us. How fast it is moving and where it is going. To reflect as to whether we are journeying through it mindfully at all. We can notice whether we make time to explore all the notes we have within us or all the colours we have around us.
We come to understand that we could potentially be 7 in one minute, and then 60 the next.
I’ve heard that danish pop song every day since last Thursday. Not necessarily always in the car. More often than not, it’s in my own head. Not only because repetitive danish pop has a way of settling itself into the sinews of your brain – but because it reminds me that time continually flows onward despite how fast or slow I think it is. And that while I can’t promise to see my own parents once or twice a month, I can promise to call. Just like I hope my small ones call me.
When they’re not so small.
And hating their own children’s music.