Classic songs discovered in 2016

Two songs my Dad introduced me to in 2016 that I really like.  Both also happen to be about or occur in San Francisco.

Little Boxes – Pete Seeger

This is such a fun little ditty.  My Dad brought it to my attention after I had just landed in Columbus, Ohio.  I had commented that I looked down from the plane as we approached the airport; I saw endless neighborhoods filled with houses that looked the same.  All of them had perfect black driveways surrounded by perfect, similarly sized lawns with freshly cut grass and there didn’t seem to be much difference between them.  I then commented on how life takes people in certain directions but most end up doing just what everyone else does and that involves buying one of these beautiful houses with a perfectly black driveway surrounded by a lush green lawn.  I was glad that I had separated myself from the stream and done something unique.

He told me this reminded him of a song he always remembered from the second grade.  Little Boxes tells the story of how everyone grows up, goes to school and their paths might differ slightly but everyone always ends up in “Little boxes made of ticky tacky,’ just the same.  Then the cycle repeats itself.

Little boxes on the hillside,
Little boxes made of ticky tacky,1
Little boxes on the hillside,
Little boxes all the same.
There’s a green one and a pink one
And a blue one and a yellow one,
And they’re all made out of ticky tacky
And they all look just the same.

And the people in the houses
All went to the university,
Where they were put in boxes
And they came out all the same,
And there’s doctors and lawyers,
And business executives,
And they’re all made out of ticky tacky
And they all look just the same.

And they all play on the golf course
And drink their martinis dry,
And they all have pretty children
And the children go to school,
And the children go to summer camp
And then to the university,
Where they are put in boxes
And they come out all the same.

And the boys go into business
And marry and raise a family
In boxes made of ticky tacky
And they all look just the same.
There’s a green one and a pink one
And a blue one and a yellow one,
And they’re all made out of ticky tacky
And they all look just the same.

Taxi – Harry Chapin

I think this song really touches a lot of people since many have a story of a high school love.  Most will never see them again but it is nice to remember and dream about the excitement a chance meeting would bring.  The song coaxes the listener into examining where they and their ex boyfriend/girlfriend ended up in life and how intoxicating it might be to have a chance meeting just like the taxi driver and actress in the song.

Through the too many miles and the too little smiles, I still remember you.

I just wrote a post about youthful excitement and how it dies later on in life.  I think that everyone should be able to meet just once for coffee with their high school sweetheart.  They were such a huge and wonderful part of life but due to marriage, jealousies, and the general discomfort it might cause a spouse these meetings rarely happen.  There is also the risk of old feelings resurfacing which could be a bit dangerous due to family commitments and current relationships.

It is a shame that emotions, irrational as they can be hold so much sway over otherwise rationally thinking adults.  It is a shame that a catch up meeting with an old sweetheart usually cannot occur because most adults are not mature enough to handle it and society does not permit it.

And she walked away in silence,
It’s strange, how you never know,
But we’d both gotten what we’d asked for,
Such a long, long time ago.

Author: 魔手

Global Citizen! こんにちは!僕の名前はマットです. Es decir soy Mateo. Aussi, je m'appelle Mathieu. Likes: Languages, Cultures, Computers, History, being Alive! \(^.^)/