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Carpool Captive Audience

October 22, 2014

In effort to educate my kids, who know all the words to Meghan Trainor’s “All About That Bass,” about music and its history, I turned to Pandora.  After listening to a few jazz and doo-wop songs last night, we turned on a Motown station this morning.

While they ate their waffles and sausages, I sang along to “My Girl,” and “What a Wonderful World This Would Be.”  I danced around the kitchen while making sandwiches, filling water bottles and belting out top-volume, wholesome song lyrics.  My daughter came in and danced with me.  My boys made fun of us by fake dancing with each other, complete with goo-goo eyes and silly faces.  (But hey, they were still dancing!)

It put us in a great mood on this rainy, gray morning, so I kept my phone playing Motown as we walked out to the car to head to school.

We carpool with another family who has three kids, so it’s a full minivan every morning.  My oldest son sits in the front seat next to me since the rest fill the seats in the back.  We typically look like a clown car unloading in the carpool lane every morning.  As the neighbor kids loaded into the car, “Stand By Me” was playing and those who recognized it sang along.

Wiggles_big_red_carMy family is used to the fact that I cannot help but sing along to music.  Any song, any day, whether I know the words or not, I sing along.  If it’s a popular radio song, my minivan is hopping, with six kids singing along.  This morning, though, since Motown was fairly new to them, it was mostly me.

When Mary Wells’ “My Guy” came on, my son was a sitting duck.  Captive in his seat belt, within arms’ reach of me, in a slow-moving rainy day carpool lane, my son got to be my unwilling car-dance partner, to the entertainment of the five kids in the back seats.

He tried to scoot as far away from me as possible when I grabbed his chin and sang, “No handsome face could ever take the place of my guy, MY GUY!”

So I locked the doors, grabbed his arm closest to mine and wrapped it around my own, singing, “I’m sticking to my guy like a stamp to a letter, like two birds of a feather, we…stick together!  I’m telling you from the start, I won’t be torn apart from my guy.”

By the end of the song, he had learned enough lyrics to yell over my own voice, “…when it comes to being happy, WE AREN’T!!!!”

I pulled up to the front of the school, and the minivan exodus that usually takes a few minutes was done in seconds, with my oldest racing out as fast as his heavy backpack would let him.

I rolled down the window, wished them all a good day and kept singing at the top of my lungs with the rain landing on the leather seats.  I’m pretty sure the three girls kept singing all the way to the doors, chasing behind my poor kid.  A little fun and embarrassment is a mom’s prerogative.

Thank you, Pandora, for the great music lesson this morning!!  If you ask me, Motown beats out Meghan Trainor, hands down.

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