Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Styx in Your Craw

Sometimes I forget the awesome power I wield as a parent. In the wrong hands, such power can be, and often is, lethal. It's no surprise that 99% of all people are complete fuckups because, face it, 99% of their parents were fucked up. What's my point? I have no, fucking idea! My intro paragraphs are always shitty filler anyway.

But I do know this: I have the power to make the band "Styx" the greatest band in the world to my kids. And I did just that this past weekend.

On Saturday, I let the old lady sleep in and decided to take the kidlets to Barnes & Noble to get some gifts. I had to get two presents for some professor's kids, whose party we were all going to attend later that day. Then I had to get something for a kid in Miss O's class who is having a birthday shindig next weekend. Finally, I had shit for Mother's Day, so I thought I'd pick up a CD or something for the old lady. The trip was a nightmare in the making, but I decided to make it as fun as I could for everyone. Why? Because I'm a lover of the fun, goddamn it!

So we're driving there and, as I'm flipping through the crappy, Seger-soaked airwaves, I hear the opening strains to "Come Sail Away," by the always melodious, always gay "Styx." And I say that as a true fan of the Styx. I saw them at the International Amphitheater in Chicago, circa 1979, and I still have scars on my cornea from their laser light extravaGONZO!

I decide to make "Come Sail Away" the GREATEST SONG EVER! I start out with a little:

ME: Hey, guys! This is the greatest song! It's about a boat... that's sailing! Check it out!

See, I never actually listen to the lyrics of any songs, so I can never tell them what the songs are actually about. The old lady, she knows the words to pretty much every song ever written. Me? I'm all about the music. Lyrics are stupid. I mean, for all I know, "Come Sail Away" could be about how Dennis DeYoung used to love to have dogs shit on his head, while he pulled his toenails off with a pliers. It's possible -- I just like to think it's about a boat that's sailing.

ANYWAY, I crank it up and start singing along with the first verse:

ME: I'm sailing a-way! Something something COURSE on a VIRGIN something...

I look in the rearview mirror, and the kids are getting into it. Hands are tapping, heads are beginning to bop...

ME: We'll search for tomorrow, flah flah guh SHORE/And I'll try, oh lord, I'll try... TO CARRY ON! ALL RIGHT -- THIS IS WHERE IT KICKS IN!

And then they fucking kicked it in. Say what you want about the Styx, but they could "kick it in" with the best of 'em.

When they get to the chorus, the kids figure it out and we're all singing at the top of our lungs:



They were loving it! And then came the big instrumental, spaced-out, synthy middle part. I cranked it way up and BLEW THEIR MINDS!!!!

ME: This is where the ship starts floating up out of the water and starts sailing into... SPACE!!!! ISN'T THAT AWESOME?!?!?!


Well, it went on and on, for about, oh, however long the song is. Like 50 minutes. By the time we got to Barnes & Noble, we had taken a trip around the galaxy and our car was covered in star flakes and moon dust! We had drunk Space Nectar from the Big Dipper and danced the "Bleep Bloop" with Ursa Major! It was a journey we would never speak of aloud, but also one we would never soon forget.

And I think I pretty much succeeded in making it the greatest song they've ever heard. Hell, Mr. Z even asked if I'd burn it to a disk for him! That, my friends, is power. But it wasn't only my power. Nay, I got a little help from some "Blue Collar Men" from the Windy City.

Domo arigato, Misters Roboto.


Kim said...

Yeah, Styx is sorta ghey. That's why we love 'em.

Word of parental advice: keep the kids away from "Snowblind" unless you REALLY wanna go there.

crabbydad said...

What's wrong with "Snowblind"? Isn't that just about Tommy Shaw's love of snowmobiling?

Cazzie!!! said...

Thats so ace Crabbydad, music is the Universal Language, besides sign language and "the bird" as Tom Cruise does in Top Gun to the Mig Fighter pilot that is, PMSL!!!

Cazzie!!! said...


Theres the lyrics for you if you cannot remember them as yet

_jjs said...

What is kind of freaking me out is I can remember my dad doing this exact same thing to my brother and I when we were little, with Styx and Come Sail Away. The influence of a parent is like no other, I still love that song. If you were to look through my CD case it probably have a very strong resemblance to my dad's, you know, minus the gangst' rap .. haha

crabbydad said...

Well, I guess the cat's out of the bag, jjs...


Arnie said...

If you haven't already, you should check out the show Freaks and Geeks. First off, it's just great, and second, "Come Sail Away" plays a very major role in the pilot episode.

crabbydad said...

One of my all-time faves, Arnold. The box set is on my amazon wishlist... hint, hint. It's worth it for the Joe Flaherty moments, alone.

Kim said...

Let us not forget the holy Eric Cartman version of Come Sail Away. True genius!!