Last night I went to an open house at the school where our daughter will be attending kindergarten in the fall. The youngster was a bundle of nerves -- so hyper that a brownie and ice cream calmed her down. I was trying to encourage her to say hello to her (prospective) teachers, to look around, but she just bounced off the walls with her friends. I can tell she's really going to enjoy kindergarten (she went nuts -- or more so -- in the music room with all the instruments out), but there is also the realization that she's reaching another milestone.
Let's start the "Song of the Day" with the "adult" song -- "Wake Up," off the Ditty Bops' eponymous debut album. The Ditty Bops write wry folk-rock songs -- think Suzanne Vega perhaps, but somehow "Wake Up" got played on XM Kids one day. Perhaps this is why:
"Don't cause a scene / Mind your manners / Speak only if spoken to / You know what you are not do / Watch and learn
What if you never were short for time / All meetings cancelled clocks stopped at nine / Without alarms the silence beams / Watch and learn"
Yeah, OK. Kinda makes me wonder about all those boundaries we're setting. Would it really be so bad if the kids ran around outside until late at night? (Please don't answer that.) The lyrics are written to get adults to look at their own lives, but it's raising questions for the parents out there, no?
For a similar perspective, but targeted much more at the parents, check out Brady Rymer's "Dilly Dally Daisy," which, in the midst of a song about a cute but perhaps frustrating-to-the-parent daughter, includes these lines:
"Oh man, I wanna let her go
And see the world her own way, ya know?
'Cause pretty soon they're gonna get her in line
They'll say, 'Stand up straight! Tuck in your shirt!
Know where you're going and get there on time!' "
Those lines will go right over the head of the 4-year-old and right to the heart of the parent.
There aren't a lot of songs about how one chooses to be a parent. Those two, one accidentally, one on purpose, are two of the few.