Comments: What Elephant? In Fact, What Room?

Well, it's likely my embarrassing songs and yours are different, because you were probabaly just out of college in the 90s, which decade represented my own middle school, high school and college days. So - early 90s, Baby Got Back was wildly popular. And while now I can't so much as here the first few chords of the intro without cringing, back in high school it was COOL to like that song, and not only like it but learn all the words to it and dance in a horribly suggestive way. And so I did. And *practiced* the singing and dancing before every single high school dance.

Another instance is both personal AND generational - I, and almost every person of my age that I know, can TO THIS DAY recite every single word of Ice, Ice Baby. We don't actually do it, mind you, unless extremely intoxicated, but the words are ingrained because we sang them so many times in middle school. That is a horribly humiliating fact.

Finally, I LOVED WITH ALL OF MY DARLING LITTLE 12-YEAR-OLD HEART the New Kids on the Block (NKOTB to their adoring fans). I had the cassette and the video tape for their first album, and I cried and cried when my mom wouldn't buy me tickets to their concert in our area. I was in love with Donnie. And I listened over and over and over to The Right Stuff and Hangin' Tough. That is a supremely embarrassing fact.

Posted by JenA at December 4, 2006 8:19 AM

I do remember listening to "Down Under" relentlessly, and then wearing my Men At Work painter's cap to school and trying to convince people I'd actually seen them in concert, because that, to me, would've been the pinnacle of coolness. My painter's cap paired with my neon orange socks (1983ish) was not enough, apparently.

Also a girlfriend and I made up an entire dance routine to "Our Lips Are Sealed." It involved a lot of finger-to-the-lips in a shushing motion. We were FIERCE.

Less embarrassing in a THEN sort of way, though still fairly terrifying in a NOW sort of way: I know all the lyrics to "Domo Arigato, Mr. Roboto." Still.

Posted by Mir at December 4, 2006 8:50 AM

Y'know, my problem with an exercise like this is that I usually still like songs I used to like, even if they *should* be embarrassing to me.

For instance, if I was doing this exchange with someone, I could pretty much just hand them a copy of the soundtrack to "Grease" and call it a wrap because I WORE that record (yes, record...not CD) OUT one summer when I was an adolescent and it involved singing at the top of my lungs with the windows open, and dancing around my bedroom pretending I was in the movie, and y'all...it was Olivia Newton-John and pre-seeerious-ac-tooor John Travolta and I thought they were both faaaaabulous!

But...BUT...that would imply I no longer like those songs. And yet when my sister and BIL break out the karaoke machine for family gatherings, who do you suppose is bouncing up and down and squealing "ooooh, put on the Grease CD!!" Yep, that would be me. And YEP, my family's idea of fun frequently includes a karaoke machine.

So you can assume that when the following songs pop up on an oldies station I'm probably dancing and singing along instead of groaning and turning them off because I'M JUST LIKE THAT! But in case you're wayWAY cooler than I am, how about stuff like early Madonna - "Like a Virgin" or "Material Girl" maybe. Or "Walk Like an Egyptian" (who sang that...GoGos? remember the little dance that went with?) Or "Wake me up before you go-go..." (don't remember who sang that either...was that Wham?) And oooohOOH, that song by Wilson Phillips, what was it..."Hold On" or something like that? That one is still a total earworm for me. If I hear it, I'm singing it for days.

Posted by DebR at December 4, 2006 8:55 AM

I remember liking Toto and Billy Squier when I was in the 5th or 6th grade and being all, you know, cool.

Random question - What about Blogging for Books? Will it ever come back?

Keetha

Posted by Keetha at December 4, 2006 10:26 AM

Like you, I have a hard time coming up with "songs from my past." That is, until I go to the gym. They play a wacky vid-mix of current top-40s shuffled in with all sorts of "oldies" (classics -- *snort*) and sometimes one of those will come on and I will be transported back to junior high. Last Thursday "Come On Irene" came on and I noticed people staring at me. Apparently I was singing out loud.

Posted by Mel at December 4, 2006 10:33 AM

Blame it on the rain- milli vanilli, even after it came out about the lipsynching and the weirdness. I saw them in concert. My first concert. I can still sing it.

Rush, rush- paula abdul. I think that's all that needs to be said.

New Kids on the Block

And more currently? I secretly love Kelly Clarkson.

Posted by megan at December 4, 2006 10:37 AM

Well, if you grew up in the South, which you did, you probably know all the words to "Sweet Home, Alabama." And if you pay attention, you realize that the song is 1. celebrating racist Wallace, and 2. dissing Neil Young. But we still love that song, don't we? It's our fricking anthem. How embarrassingly personal is that?

Also, here's betting you were slow dancing with that boy to "Stairway to Heaven."

Posted by Edgy Mama at December 4, 2006 10:51 AM

Three words:

WAS NOT WAS

Posted by Bella at December 4, 2006 11:09 AM

My sisters and I used to pretend to be Abba. This was junior high, 1980-ish, when my mom had the "Super Trouper" album.

I also used to love Wham! and actually recall a conversation where I defended the oh-so-very-deep meaning of "Credit Card Baby." Good lord.

What else? Definitely both Grease soundtracks, and ooh! here's one. Admittedly, I knew it was cheesy, but I *lovedlovedloved* that power ballad "The Search Is Over." Can't remember who sang it, but I used to sing along with great emotion and angst. Also, Air Supply's "Making Love Out Of Nothing At All." Eek!

Posted by Aimee at December 4, 2006 11:22 AM

Okay, how about Patty Smyth's The Warrior? My best friend and I spent hours/days/months choreographing a dance to it... wait, stop, rewind, change that step... while we sang at the top of our lungs. Or knowing all the words to 99 Red Balloons? In German? Oh geez, how about actually liking (and singing!) that song Patrick Swayze came out with after Dirty Dancing -- She's Like The Wind. Then there's all the one's DebR mentioned (totally 2nd each and every one of them). I also had a thing for Prince songs... entirely too embarrassing now (especially since all the lyrics are like permanent leeches on my brain so that any time a song comes on, I'm forced to still sing along - against my will, obviously).

Posted by dragonfly at December 4, 2006 12:31 PM

Although I know I must have embarrassing stories to go with Wham! or Grease, I'll share one of my sister's instead :P At my birthday party (maybe about 12ish) "Shake It Up" by the Cars came on. My younger sister grabbed the 2 liter of soda in front of her and did just that-- shook it up. The spray hit the ceiling. She was mortified, but it was oh so funny :)

Posted by Laura L at December 4, 2006 1:07 PM

Did someone mention Air Supply? I believe they did. See if this will take you back:

http://video.yahoo.com/video/play?vid=fae506fd441f18fd9aa3e6aef3acf423.895251

My humiliating moment came when I was playing this song over and over, wondering when I'd ever be All Out of Love...or if I'd ever be IN it, actually, and this boy going into sixth grade declared his love for me. Only problem was I was going into NINTH. I was so humiliated.

He brought me flowers one afternoon, and I stood at the front door, said, "Hasn't this gone FAR ENOUGH?" and shut the door in his face. Then, I took the flowers and stuffed them in my overflowing closet because I was afraid someone would discover the tragic and humiliating situation I was in.

After I grew up a little, I'd see him walk by my house every afternoon on his way home from school (he went to the small parochial school at the end of my street), and I'd feel so bad and embarrassed over my behavior, but he never spoke to me again.

Looking back, he was kind of cute. He had curly red hair and bright blue eyes, and his name was Matt. I might have missed something good.

Posted by Julie at December 4, 2006 2:16 PM

I was often involved in group choreographed dancing. The first time was in elementary school for a talent show. There were six or seven of us and we danced to Kool and the Gang's, Celebration. We had yellow shirts that said "Celebration" across our chest and when I wore it with my jean jacket all you could read was "bra." Also, for the dance I wore my mother's pantyhose, she was 40-ish and so they were support pantyhose. I remember a boy in my class telling me later "I could see your underwear." I guess the truth, that he could see my support hose despite me being only 10-ish and needing nothing to support was worse, but back then, I explained how he was wrong anyway.

Posted by Linda Sherwood at December 4, 2006 2:41 PM

When I was really young I was a HUGE Cyndi Lauper fan (Girls Just Wanna Have Fun) as well as Madonna (Material Girl-era).

In high school I listened to Love and Rockets, the Cure, Tom Tom Club, U2 (TONS of U2), REM.

Thanks for the trip back in time!

Posted by Cat at December 4, 2006 3:22 PM

J. Geil's Band: Centerfold, Freeze Frame
Van Halen: Jump
Michael Jackson (pre-weirdness. Ok, maybe not. He was still just considered eccentric at that time.): Beat It, Billie Jean, Thriller
Twisted Sister: We're Not Gonna Take It
Quiet Riot: Bang Your Head
Anything by Madonna or the Go-Go's or The Pet Shop Boys.

This is so completely embarrassing! Fortunately I have learned to appreciate REAL, ACTUAL music!

Posted by Melisa at December 4, 2006 3:32 PM

I CAN'T believe that WHAM! "Wake Me Up Before you Go-Go" and "Careless Whisper" did not make these comments!

"Careless Whisper" was playing when I danced with Jimmy Jones at the prom in 11th grade. Of course, it was very different from YOUR dance with YOUR boy, because:
A. I threatened to tell his mother about catching him smoking pot behind the church if he didn't dance with me.
B. He smelled like pot as we were dancing, and yet somehow, I still thought I loffed him.
C. His one snarky comment during the whole thing was, "Your a** looks bigger in that dress than it does in jeans".

Ahhh....the joy of young love.

Posted by Angela at December 4, 2006 4:18 PM

Bonnie Tyler, Total Eclipse of the Heart
Anything by Heart
Sister Christian by Night Ranger

I take pride in most of my other musical choices, after junior high. I was a reactionary. As a general rule, my classmates liked Truly Awful Music. I spent most of high school immersed in classic rock (think Doors and Led Zeppelin) and listening to the local alternative college station. And I LOVE catching "Come on Irene" on the radio!

Posted by amy at December 4, 2006 5:16 PM

Um, who remembers Puppy Love by Donny Osmond? Anything by the Partridge Family or Shaun Cassidy, for that matter. Can we say Village People and still keep a straight face?! Tears for Fears. Who were those weird guys who did "Whip It"? Divo? And we LIKED it--that is just so wrong.... And I have to say, "Achy Breaky Heart" by Billy Ray Cyrus--loved it when it came out, but now I am embarassed to admit that! Even went to see him at a free concert at our local fair the year that song was big! I also am not good with names of bands--just knew if I liked the song or not.

Posted by Sheri at December 4, 2006 7:40 PM

AAAHHH, Shaun Cassidy........I thought for sure I would never lovvve another, like I LOVED Shaun. singing "do run run" (or what ever it was) took up alot of my time. I don't think I had any idea what he was talking about, but I sure sung it at the top of my lungs, over and over.

Posted by Desi at December 4, 2006 9:34 PM

and by the way...have you seen Shaun Cassidy lately? HE'S OLD!

Posted by Desi at December 4, 2006 9:35 PM

"Walk Like an Egyptian" is by the Bangles, "Whip It" is by Devo, and if you want truly just humiliating music, check out the Xanadu soundtrack ;-)

Posted by Kestralyn at December 4, 2006 9:57 PM

Okay. My first album ever (setting aside 'Free To Be You And Me' and 'Really Rosie' which were jointly owned with my sisters) was Shaun Cassidy. The one with the photo of him as a baby sitting at the piano? Sigh. I was pretty sure I'd marry him.

I absolutely love embarrassing music. I love most of the songs mentioned here today! I *heartily* second Aimee's mentioning of 'The Search is Over'. I also loved the whole soundtrack to 'Flashdance', 'Time After Time' by Cybdi Lauper (the video practically made me rend my garments because it was SO SAD. ahem.), and for one that is spectacularly bad... now bear in mind that my very pregnant sister and I were singing this at the top of our lungs this summer much to my husband's consternation...'All Cried Out Over You' by Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam with Full Force.

And I loved Donnie Wahlberg too- because someone had to!

Top *that*!

Posted by Laura at December 4, 2006 11:37 PM

Gotta find some Bill Cosby old stuff to sneak in on that CD, Joshilyn!! Seriously!!

Chicken Dance Song!! Chicken Dance Song!!

Posted by North at December 5, 2006 12:07 AM

Great trip down memory lane reading these comments...and now I'm stuck with Sister Christian in my head and I can't get rid of it. Maybe this is better than having The Bag of Crabs song in your head???

Posted by Karen at December 5, 2006 8:58 AM

Totally not related to having worn out Bon Jovi's Slippery when wet, but rather having everything to do with Weebl-Stuff:

I See Things!

I See Them with my Eyes!

I See Things!

They're Often in Disguise...

Posted by Alix at December 5, 2006 9:27 AM

First of all, I hate you--because much like the embarrassing songs we are forced to sing in our heads, I HAD. TO. READ. EVERY. COMMENT. And now I am hopelessly stuck singing "Total Eclipse of the Heart" in a loop.

Lots of humiliating songs for me--most centered around their relevance to one boy with gorgeous blue eyes named Jason. . .like all Jasons I've ever known, he was completely hot,completely troubled, and completely IN trouble most of the time--and he did not tolerate my adoration well.

One song I still love of which I am not ashamed is "Boys of Summer" by Don Henley. . .but the one that was fun but the TOTALLY "had to be there" kind of thing is "Safety Dance." My brother and I LIVED to see it played on "Friday Night Videos."

Posted by roxanne at December 5, 2006 9:55 AM

Since I enjoyed everyone's embarassing music, I'll provide one of my own.

Bay City Rollers


And thank God I grew up and found good music!

Posted by Terri at December 5, 2006 12:23 PM

The Llama Song has the Crab Song totally beat: http://www.albinoblacksheep.com/flash/llama.php

I have been singing this song for days now, thanks to my daughters who love it. I even know all the words.

That's pretty embarassing.

Posted by Mary at December 5, 2006 12:45 PM

Anything by Journey makes my list, as does anything by Air Supply. I have friend that still loves Journey. Whenever we're at work, she'll hear the first few notes and yell "Journey on the radio!".

Ok, my heartbreak song was by Chicago, or Peter Cetera, not sure which. It wasn't the Karate Kid song, it was after that. I listened to it all night long one night, hopng against hope that my just-ex boyfriend would show up while my mom was out of town. And he would pull me into his arms and tlel me how much he luuuvered me. Of course, it didn't happen quite like that. He DID show up, but it was just to ask for his letterman jacket back. And he did pull me into his arms, but it was just for a goodbye hug. And he did tell me he loved me, but in the way you will always love your first love, not the way he loved football, of course. Which is nothing at all the same. Now, I can't hear that song without thinking of that long, sad night, and thinking how well things turn out, even if it seems the world is ending some nights...

Posted by dee at December 5, 2006 1:34 PM

What I find amazing when it comes to music, is how I can sing right along to nearly any 80s song I hear it on the radio today. Did I listen to the radio that much when I was a kid?

Posted by Amy at December 5, 2006 3:49 PM

To Desi, who said that Shaun Cassidy looks old - girl, have you seen Eddie Vedder lately? Holy Cow, looks like an FBI time progression type photo. Still the same but WAY older. Sad.

My embarrassing story is also of a talent show where my friend and I worked TIRELESSLY choregraphong a sexy dance number to "Like a Virgin". As much like the video as we could do without a Venetian gondola. Then we performed it. To our 4th grade class. In Catholic school. The most embarrassing part - we had no idea why the teacher was so upset or why she cut us off mid dance. I hadn't even worn the mesh shirt! Harumph!

Loved reading these!

Posted by Em at December 5, 2006 10:14 PM

Leonard Cohen's "Everyboody Knows" except the Concrete Blonde version. It's a good song, but I vividly remember sitting in my parents' basement listening to it over and over again one night in highshcool when I was between boys (wait- that didn't sound right). I was trying to get rid of one and keep the other, I just wasn't sure which one was which. *sigh*

Posted by Chris at December 6, 2006 9:37 AM

Whoohoo! The Bay City Rollers! I still get chills if I hear that S - A - TUR - DAY NIGHT! And Kool and the Gang's CELEBRATION. I still have albums in storage of Bay City Rollers, Donny & Marie, Queen, Kiss, Olivia Newton-John and Shaun Cassidy. Probably the most embarrassing...the guy that played Hutch on Starsky and Hutch. Erg!

Posted by Katkin at December 6, 2006 1:07 PM

"I have a brand new pair of roller skates, you have a brand new key...." Thank you, hubby! Now I got THAT rolling around in my head!! Nobody mentioned The Captain and Tenille or the Bee Gees!! Who could forget "Muskrat Love"?!

Posted by Sheri at December 6, 2006 6:15 PM

MUSKRAT LOVE!!!!!!!!!
I SAVED MY MONEY FOR YEARSSSS, (IT SEEMS LIKE) ordered that thing off the Tv, and thought I was really something. How romantic is 2 muskrats being in love, I ask you? Only to a 12 yr old I guess. But I sure loved it!

Posted by Desi at December 6, 2006 9:21 PM

Last year when I was super sick and pregnant, I became Bad Mom and allowed my son to play video games to his heart's content while I languished on the couch and thought about how stupid I was to get pregnant.

Once I returned to Good Mom status (no longer puking) I returned to limiting the brain mushing games.

The other day he pulled out the same game and stuck it in the playstation and I swear to Betsy that I got nauseous just hearing the music from that same game.

Posted by Heather Cook at December 9, 2006 12:30 AM

I refuse to answer this because anything I remember from my childhood would expose how incredibly old I am compared, apparently, to the rest of the people who responded. I really don't remember much 80's music. By the 80's, I was mainly listening to Raffi while nursing a baby and reading Where the Wild Things Are to a small child. I remember Thirtysomething and Moonlighting from the 80's. And wasn't Madonna an 80's phenomenon? Before she got all political and british accenty?

OKAY, OKAY - first crush. Gulp. Davey from The Monkees. And the guy from Here Come the Brides. There's a theme song from that - The bluest skies you'll ever see, in Seattle..... something like that.

My best friend and I memorized and sang a song at a concert for our parents at age 11 or so.

"Blue, blue, my world is blue. Blue is my world, now that I'm without you. Red, red, my eyes are red...." and so on through the rainbow.

I also listened enough John Denver for six hundred teenagers. And Color My World by Chicago.

Posted by Laume at December 9, 2006 3:08 AM

OOO!! Davy Jones *swoon*.... And I love anything Chicago--IX is a great album. I don't remember the theme song but I remember the hunka hunka from "Here Comes The Brides"! I have a CD with great songs from the 70's--Styx, REO, Skynard, Journey, Foreigner, Bad Company, Seger, CCR--ringing any bells for you?!! Quit listening to rock in the early 80's when New Wave hit.
John Denver--remember the movie that was made from the song "Sunshine on My Shoulders'?! I can still sing every one of his songs...

Posted by Sheri at December 9, 2006 6:37 PM

"The Search is Over" was by Survivor, and it was totally my personal theme song anthem during my junior year of high school because I was madly in love with this guy who was just my buddy and I had all kinds of daydreams about that song coming true when he'd look at me and realize that the search was over and the perfect girl for him was right there beside him.

Same story for that Jack Wagner song "All I Need." And how about "Sometimes When We Touch." And "Can't Fight This Feeling" (or something to that effect) by REO Speedwagon.

I could put together an entire mix tape of the songs that inspired romantic fantasies about that guy. I saw him at the class reunion a couple of months ago, and he was so not worth it. He didn't age well. And now he's the one gawking at me.

I also loved Air Supply and Melissa Manchester. "Don't Cry Out Loud" is like the anthem of emotional repression. But it's fun to sing at the top of your lungs while driving down the highway. When I got in really sad "nobody loves me" moods, there was "What About Me?" by Moving Pictures (one-hit wonder). Those lyrics pretty much encapsulate the teenage experience:

"What about me?
It Isn't fair. I haven't had enough and I want my share.
Can't you see, I want to live. But you just take more than you give."

Okay, now I'm off to dig through my cassette collection of high school mix tapes, and it's all your fault.

Posted by Shanna Swendson at December 9, 2006 11:27 PM

Put on Madonna's "Like a Prayer" -- remember our "Socratic method" version? HAHAHAHA.

Posted by Lydia at December 10, 2006 11:01 AM

Okay, I'm late to the party, but I've been moving, and working, and moving, and working.

I have to say, I hate you all now. I now have a bad combination of bad 80s music stuck in my head.

But y'all missed a few:

You give love a bad name - Bon Jovi (which I think is from "Slippery when Wet" and really, he looked SOOOOO much better with the long hair and minus 20 years).

And "The Itsy Bitsy Spider" song.

Of course, if you want more bad 80s music, just watch "Night at the Roxbury" or "Zoolander"

Relax! Don't do it!

(And I'll bet you still have the Bon Jovi song running through your head and it will be ALL DAY. So THERE).

:)

Posted by Nicole at December 11, 2006 11:01 AM