I added some songs every child should know –– tracks by Boston and REO Speedwagon –– and was almost finished when a request came in from the second-grader. “Can you put on ‘Crazy Train?’” he asked. As I wasn’t familiar with that particular song, this required a second opinion.
It’s the end of another February vacation week.
I used to dread school vacations with a sense of foreboding that rivaled going to the dentist or doing my taxes. Then, a few years ago, we started traveling during the February break. Not to Florida –– although that would be nice –– but to Rochester, N.Y., my hometown.
Such a trip requires preparation and, lately, that preparation means loading up the kids’ iPods with music and videos for the drive. So, last weekend, I sat down with my laptop, iTunes and a few CDs to load. I transferred some Looney Tunes cartoons onto the iPods, loaded a Kidz Bop CD and remembered my daughter’s request for Jimmy Buffet. I added some songs every child should know –– tracks by Boston and REO Speedwagon –– and was almost finished when a request came in from the second-grader.
“Can you put on ‘Crazy Train?’” he asked.
As I wasn’t familiar with that particular song, this required a second opinion.
“Hey, Daddy,” I called to my husband, “is ‘Crazy Train’ OK for the kids’ iPods?”
“I guess so,” he answered.
Satisfied, I typed the title into the iTunes store search bar. Up popped Ozzy Osbourne.
Ozzy? He of the headless bats and dysfunctional family? My husband thinks the former Black Sabbath frontman, a legendary drug addict, is an appropriate choice for the tender ears of my 7-year-old?
Clearly, this required some investigation. I downloaded the song, braced myself and turned up the speakers.
“All aboooooard!” screamed Ozzy.
“What was THAT?” yelled my tween-aged daughter.
“A song your brother wants on his iPod,” I shouted, catching my breath.
She gave me a half-worried, half-disgusted look.
“I don’t want it on mine,” she said.
“I didn’t think you would,” I assured her.
What had prompted my Beach Boys-loving son to suddenly embrace death metal? He had mentioned something about the Super Bowl, so I searched for “crazy train super bowl,” and suddenly understood. The Patriots had used it as their entrance song.
Somehow, I missed that part of the show. I must have been putting the finishing touches on the nachos or something.
I listened to the rest of the song and decided it didn’t encourage drug use or chomping on wildlife, at least not directly. Besides, my son would probably just think of the bravado of his favorite team, before they lost the big game. I transferred the song to his iPod, and his little brother’s, too.
“Just don’t let Grammy or Grampy hear it,” I told the boys.
“We won’t,” they promised.
As we got into the van to start our trip, I told them that under no circumstances were they to yell along with Ozzy as they listened to it.
“Aye, aye, aye, aye,” they agreed.
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