From Terpsichore and The Onion.
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
A must-read from Rebecca and Reenie.
In 1986, Dan Harrison (pictured above) was on holiday in Kenya after graduating from Northwestern University
On a hike through the bush, he came across a young bull elephant standing with one leg raised in the air. The elephant seemed distressed, so Dan approached it very carefully.
He got down on one knee and inspected the elephant's foot and found a large piece of wood deeply embedded in it. As carefully and as gently as he could, Dan worked the wood out with his hunting knife, after which the elephant gingerly put down its foot.
The elephant turned to face the man, and with a rather curious look on its face, stared at him for several tense moments. Dan stood frozen, thinking of nothing else but being trampled. Eventually the elephant trumpeted loudly, turned, and walked away.
Dan never forgot that elephant or the events of that day.
Twenty years later, Dan was walking through the Chicago Zoo with his teenaged son. As they approached the elephant enclosure, one of the creatures turned and walked over to near where Dan and his son Dan Jr. were standing.
The large bull elephant stared at Dan, lifted its front foot off the ground, and then put it down. The elephant did that several times then trumpeted loudly, all the while staring at the man. Remembering the encounter in 1986, Dan couldn't help wondering if this was the same elephant.
Dan summoned up his courage, climbed over the railing and made his way into the enclosure. He walked right up to the elephant and stared back in wonder. The elephant trumpeted again, wrapped its trunk around one of Dan's legs and slammed him against the railing, killing him instantly.
Probably wasn't the same elephant.
A list from the pseudonymous Shorty about songs she liked without knowing what they were really about.
"Walk This Way" by Aerosmith
Because of the "hey-diddle-diddle" chorus, I thought the song was a nursery rhyme. I can vividly recall being in first grade and singing this song on the playground. A teacher heard me and I got in SO much trouble.
"Lady Marmalade" by (Patti) Labelle
I thought this song was really cool because my mom told me some of the lyrics were in French. I could pronounce all the words perfectly, so I decided to impress my French-Canadian grandmother by singing it to her. She was horrified but refused to tell me what I'd said.
"Only the Good Die Young" by Billy Joel
I started listening to Billy Joel after I saw the Disney movie Oliver and Company. I really liked this song and was confused when my mom told me I couldn't sing it in public. Why? Because I was enrolled in Catholic school at the time.
"Ramblin' Man" by The Allman Brothers Band
Is there anything more adorable than a freckle-faced 8-year-old girl singing about a man being killed over a gambling debt, babies being born on buses, and womanizing?
"Digital Getdown" by NSYNC
This one almost doesn't count because it was by a boy band, but just look up the lyrics and you'll see why I had to include it. I had no idea it was about cybersex.
"I Guess That's Why They Call It the Blues" by Elton John
I thought the line "rolling like thunder under the covers" was talking about people tossing and turning because they couldn't sleep.
"Love In An Elevator" by Aerosmith
I thought it was about two people who met in an elevator and fell in love. How very wrong I was.
"Black Betty" by Ram Jam
I was a 4-year-old Ninja Turtle fan the first time I heard it. I heard the lyric "rock-steady" and (wrongly) assumed that Black Betty the girlfriend of the villain Rocksteady.
"Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap" by AC/DC
Ah, the interesting discussions this song produced. "Mommy, why would people wear shoes made of concrete? And what's cyanide?" I also remember hearing the word "neckties" and thinking, "Why are they talking about getting dressed up?" I was probably in 8th grade before I figured out the song was about murder-for-hire.
Thanks, Shorty. How about the rest of you?
The one that stands out in my mind is the mid-70s hit "Afternoon Delight" by Starland Vocal Band (yeah, I'm a wee bit older than Shorty). We all loved the song, but had no idea it was about a nooner.
This little bit of interestingness was provided by James, who tells me, "Imagine my surprise to discover by way of Wikipedia that Boney M was as popular as ABBA and Donna Summer in places such as Africa, the Arab countries, Iran, Southeast Asia, and the Soviet Union.'"
Ah, yes, well, there are some places in the world where I'd rather not be popular, thanks, because in some places, it doesn't take much to go from popular on Friday to your head on a fucking stick on Saturday. One bad note, for example, or your shirt unbuttoned on stage, or your backup singers shaking their 'fros a little too much, or your failure to dedicate the performance to His Most Supreme Excellency, The General. Then you'll be a different kind of popular, like Saddam was popular with the Marines.
In fact, I see a couple of dudes in the audience who look like they are plotting his demise even as he sings.
Another cool Photoshop gallery from Worth1000.com.
Each picture represents a popular song. Some are easy, some aren't. Some are literal, some abstract. Some will win, some will lose. Some are born to sing the blues.
"Stop! In The Name Of Love" - The Supremes
"Pump Up The Jam" - Technotronic
"Buffalo Soldier" - Bob Marley
"Ice Ice Baby" - Vanilla Ice
"Dancing Queen" - ABBA
"Seven Nation Army" - The White Stripes
"St. Elmo's Fire" - John Parr
"Rock Lobster" - The B-52's
"Freewheel Burning" - Judas Priest
"Roll Over Beethoven" - The Beatles
"Mr. Brownstone" - Guns n' Roses
"Drops Of Jupiter" - Train
"Heard It Through The Grapevine" - Marvin Gaye (among many)
"You Can't Hurry Love" - The Supremes
"Atom Heart Mother" - Pink Floyd
"Angry Chair" - Alice In Chains
"Turning Japanese" - The Vapors
"House Of The Rising Sun" - The Animals (among many)
"Kiss From A Rose" - Seal
"Mean Mr. Mustard" - The Beatles
"Footloose" - Kenny Loggins
"Maneater" - Hall & Oates
"Highway To Hell" - AC/DC
"Strawberry Fields Forever" - The Beatles
"Across The Universe" - The Beatles