Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Magic Shake-Ball

Now that I have an 11-year-old girl, and all music on the radio seems aimed at 11-year-old girls, I can't help myself from becoming Annoying Feminist Mom when we're driving in the car and listening to it all. Anyway, I'm generally not that annoyed by Taylor Swift's songs (at least compared to Kei$ha's). Until I started paying attention to the lyrics of her song "Better Than Revenge."

The story starts when it was hot and it was summer
And, I had it all; I had him right there where I wanted him
She came along, got him along, and let’s hear the applause
She took him faster than you can say sabotage
I never saw it coming, nor did I suspected it
I underestimated just who I was dealing with
She had to know the pain was beating on me like a drum
She underestimated just who she was stealing from

She’s not a saint and she’s not what you think
She’s an actress, Whoa
She’s better known for the things that she does
On the mattress, Whoa
Soon she’s gonna find
Stealing other people’s toys on the playground
Won’t make you many friends
She should keep in mind,
She should keep in mind
There is nothing I do better than revenge, Ha

Let's just start with the fact that Taylor Swift is one scary bitch here--gone is the owl-glasses, clarinet-playing, high school band-marching innocent we all needed to protect from Kanye. But what bothers me most is that she isn't blaming her boyfriend at all here. It's all the skank boyfriend stealer's fault.

Hello, Hermia.

That's right--clearly the forefunner to this summer nightmare is Midsummer Night's Dream's classic catfight between Hermia and Helena even though Lysander is the dick-wad who left her (okay, okay, he was drugged, but the point is: she doesn't know that when she decides to blame Helena, that "painted maypole" of a slut.)

The great news here from my "teachable moment" perspective was that my daughter has been in MND and will be reading it this year in English, so I thought my message about girls against girls would be a HUGE hit. Big Mom points.

Of course, she replied by asking me why I couldn't just let her enjoy the song and stop being annoying.

So, Shake-Ball, this is a long way of asking: Should I just let her enjoy her music and stop being annoying?

Answer: "Two houses, both alike in dignity,/ In fair Verona where we lay our scene, /From ancient grudge break to new mutiny" (Romeo and Juliet, Prologue 1-3)

Interpretation: Are you trying to tell me that if I'm not careful she's going to rebel against all of my fabulous feminist words of wisdom, ditch school, and run off with the enemy (aka a guy who tries to separate her from her friends and family so that she can pay more attention to him and go to Rick Perry rallies)? Oh, man. That is bleak.

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