Since U Been Gone

I'm in L.A.

Even though it seems like I'm always traveling, it isn't true.

Well, maybe it is. But this is a business trip.

You know I did a lot of my research in rape and pedophilia, that sort of wonderful stuff. Knowing how bad this is for children, rape and pedophilia, I'm compelled to do what anyone would do as a community activist, a person who believes that an ounce of prevention is worth a ton of cure. If I have to travel to educate communities and schools, to be sure that people are clear on the concept, so be it.

You just can't hide your head in the sand, is the truth, no matter where the sand might be.

But let's not talk about that, sexual abuse. Not now.

The Story:

The guys are up at six a.m. and have to be in the car at 7:15, and if you've ever tried to get little kids fed and dressed in 75 minutes, you know it's a challenge.

But they're good, and do you want to know why they're good? Because there's a carrot for every stick, is why. Every kid has his price. I do the unthinkable, introduce them to YouTube. It had to happen eventually.

There's no turning back. Getting ready, even if you are only four years old, is a snap because. . .No breakfast? No Kelly. Don't get dressed? Forget Estelle. How I ever let them watch Estelle, I'll never know. But things happen.

So they get dressed right after Since U Been Gone. And we're out the door. Bye bye, Mommy.

And this is grand, because here we have a 6 track CD changer, something I've always wanted. Yes, I'm behind. I know, I know.

Anyway, we're tooling around on the 101 in my kid's Honda (should have bought a Honda) searching for music with the amazing 6 CD Disk Changer. My daughter has quite a bit of music stored and ready at the push of a button if you happen to be in the front seat of the car.

And as the lucky elected driver for the week, I'm spending a lot of time in the front seat, driver's side. If you've ever lived in L.A., you know how lucky this is.

The guys are in the back seat arguing about what I should play. I hit or miss and something kind of slow and easy comes on, a keyboard guy hits the same chord about a thousand times. It's good. Chills me down from the morning rush to get ready.

The big guy says, "Leave this song! I like this! I like the sad songs."

The little guy says, "I hate this Bubbie. Turn on the Mika song. I want to hear the Lollypop song." He's kicking the seat.

I have now heard the Lollypop song about fifteen thousand times and know all the words, not that I ever needed to know all the words, or any of them for that matter. But he does. We can only hope he doesn't do a rendition at school.

His older brother shouts out, "You like the sad songs, right Bubbie?"

Uh, well. . .

The little guy argues authoritatively, "No she doesn't. She likes the happy songs, like the Lollypop song. Don't you Bubbie?"

You're both right.

In this situation it's best to turn off the radio and let them argue with each other and kick and scream for awhile, which is what I do to give myself time to think about tomorrow's presentation, how to present it, what to say.

At some point the kids have compromised on Since U Been Gone, Kelly. You probably know it.

Lyrics, Since You Been Gone

Here's the thing we started off friends
It was cool but it was all pretend
Yeah yeah
Since you've been gone

You dedicated you took the time
Wasn't long till I called you mine
Yeah Yeah
Since you've been gone

And all you'd ever hear me say
Is how I pictured me with you
That's all you'd ever hear me say

But since you've been gone
I can breathe for the first time
Im so movin on
Yeah yeah
Thanks to you
Now I get
What I want
Since you've been gone

How can I put it? you put me on
I even fell for that stupid love song
Yeah yeah
Since you've been gone

How come I never hear you say
I just wanna be with you
I guess you never felt that way

But since you've been gone
I can breathe for the first time
Im so movin on
Yeah yeah
Thanks to you
Now I get
I get what I want
Since you've been gone

You had your chance you blew it
Out of sight, out of mind
Shut your mouth I just can't take it
Again and again and again and again

Since you've been gone
I can breathe for the first time
Im so movin on
Yeah yeah
Thanks to you (thanks to you)
Now I get
I get what I want
I can breathe for the first time
Im so movin on
Yeah yeah
Thanks to you (thanks to you)
Now I get (I get)
You should know (you should know)
That I get
I get what I want
Since you've been gone
Since you've been gone
Since you've been gone

Not real deep. Suffice it to say that we had watched the video only minutes before and our girl, Kelly Clarkson, spurned, is furiously pitching everything her ex ever touched, ever breathed on. She's breaking picture frames and CD's, tossing the shampoo, his deodorant, his aftershave. The bedding, the pillows, feathers are flying, furniture crashing. She tackles the closet; his clothes are history. She's really angry.

The guys are watching, mesmerized. Here's an adult throwing an adult-sized tantrum, the likes of which they have never seen. And I'm thinking,
Is this permission? Are they learning that this is okay?

What have I done?
So in the car, after the song, I ask them if they get it. What happened to Kelly? Why is she so angry?

They're pretty sure it's about the guy, they tell me. He did something.

They're not sure exactly what. But it had to be bad.



blognut said…
Enjoyed the family story - you can't beat those conversations in the car.

As for the first part of the post, an ounce of prevention IS worth a pound of cure. I'm grateful to anyone who works to make people understand that.
Reas Kroicowl said…
Want a "hell hath no fury" song? Try Alanis Morissette's "You Oughta Know".

Lyrics aren't appropriate for the grandkids, but boy it's great to blast when you're feeling agitated.
Cat said…
I remember when my boys were young and I would timidly introduce them to something other than Barney or seasame street or Mr. Rodgers and we would talk about what was going on in the 30 minute show it was wonderful - I remember thinking :
My god they are little humans that still know how to have fun and look at everything the way it actually is!
therapydoc said…
Thanks. I love a good rant.
nashbabe said…
Yes, you shoulda boughta Honda. Thanks for your outreach efforts.
Interesting interpretation. I've never understood that song, you put a good spin on it.
Just Be Real said…
Deep enough. Thanks for the interesting family conversations. Blessings.
Margo said…
What a great scene. They'll love seeing it someday. I always think about this and my girls... wrapped in cotton on a remote island? or watching Greys Anatomy and MTV - together, {the first time anyway). As usual, I struggle with finding that middle ground. But we talk a lot, about how just because someone's selling something doesn't have to mean it's true for you... how high drama isn't necessary for a meaningful life. Mostly no clue what I'm doing.
Syd said…
Hmmm....I don't have that kind of happening in the car. No kids=no rants.
Enjoy the meeting. I always come back re-charged from scientific meetings.
Lisa Marie said…
This post sparked an introspective part of me to write a similar post on another Kelly Clarkson song. Thank you for getting me thinking!
Anonymous said…
I know right?! I introduced the 4 year old I nanny for to youtube and he likes britney spears 'womanizer' and pink's 'so what'. Hahaha!
Jack said…
Try driving down the 5 and you'll be able to listen to all of her albums. That freeway just doesn't move.