Let Me Go On

No one wants to learn what classic party songs are about masturbation from their father.  Or, any biological relative for that matter.

However, I learned about the Violent Femmes’ “Blister in the Sun” in this exact manner.

On a trip to Chicago to see the Blackhawks with my Dad, we were moving along the highway, listening to the now-defunct Q101.

I was so excited – I was 15, I loved Chicago and longed to live there someday.  I loved Q101 and I really loved the Chicago Blackhawks of the mid-90s.  Yes, they were sort-of mediocre, but you took what you could get.  My Dad had scored corporate tickets to a game at the legendary Chicago Stadium (in its final year of existence) from one of his work vendors.  The seats were in the lower terrace with a prime view.  I saved my allowance for weeks on end simply to buy a red Blackhawks jersey.

As we bopped along down the interstate, “Blister in the Sun” came on.  I happily sang along in the haphazard way where you kind-of know the words, but not really.

I glance over at my father, who had a bemused expression on his face.

“You know this song is about masturbation, right?”

“What?”  I was stunned.

“Think about the words,” he said.  “‘Big hands, they know you’re the one.'”

Years later, I would be at a college party and “Blister in the Sun” came on the stereo.  As we loudly sang and clanked our red cups full of cheap beer, I exclaimed, “this song is about masturbation!”

“How do you know that,” she responded.

“My Dad told me,” I said, as if this were normal.

Her eyes went wide.  “Why would your Dad tell you that?”

It then occurred to me that I perhaps didn’t have the world’s most traditional upbringing.  Which, as time would go on, would turn out to be just fine.

Eccentric is a fun way to be, especially when it’s in your genetic code.


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