Take a look at my Blogger profile picture. I look pretty normal, right? Your average thirty-something mum. You'd probably assume, judging by the deep pink top I'm wearing, that I'm 'girly.' My regular readers will know this isn't the case, but what if this was your first time reading my blog? You wouldn't have the slightest idea that I have hairy toe knuckles, can belch on queue and can't start the day without the hard core stylings of Disturbed jolting my brain into action. We all make assumptions, and assumptions make asses of us all, which brings me to something I found on my latest round of Google search bingo. A study commissioned by Cambridge University in 2009, (I know that was two years ago, but if I only just discovered it, it's new), found that people judged one another by the contents of their iPod playlists. The architect of the study warned that sharing your playlist could damage your social standing by 'reinforcing stereotypes and social prejudices.' Why not take it to the next level and do a study on the effects of sharing your musical tastes with someone who you'd like to be pressing more than just your click wheel? I'll pretend for a moment that I actually take these sorts of studies seriously, and share with you the top ten most played tracks on my girly pink Pod. Judge me if you dare!
10. APPLE STORE LOVE SONG - FATTY SPINS/RAY WILLIAM JOHNSON. Who doesn't adore the idea of going shopping for a laptop and finding someone whose lap you'd like to be on? To me, loving this song says that I have a fully functioning sense of humour, and that I believe in love at first sight, but I can see where a guy might find it troubling. For one, almost anything baring the Apple logo is expensive as hell, so men with modest incomes and a tendency for taking things literally might find hanging out at the Apple store in anticipation of my arrival a tad intimidating. They might also make the assumption that I have a thing for short men with brown eyes and a ribald sense of humour. One of those assumptions would be wrong...I don't shop at the Apple store.
9. BOSSY - KELLIS. I'm no man magnet, the last time I wore 'grills' was when the orthodontist fitted them, and my toughness can best be summed up by the admission that I've seen Dumbo seventy times and it still makes me cry hysterically. The reason this song is in my top ten is quite simply because it's an awesome track, but a read through the lyrics might lead potential suitors to picture me sitting on a velvet nightclub couch, dripping in bling, holding court over a crowd of rich, powerful men. The last guy I dated was an accountant who was into The Little River Band.
8. SPEAKING IN TONGUES - EAGLES OF DEATH METAL. The rocking guitar on this song is what makes it essential listening when I'm having a bad day, but the title could imply something entirely different to the, ahem, nocturnally minded. Contrary to what the title suggests, and I think I'm speaking for a lot of women here, any thoughts of an amorous nature quickly dissipate when I'm forced to use a napkin to mop saliva from my face.
7. DOING YOUR MOM - FATTY SPINS/RAY WILLIAM JOHNSON. This is one of the funniest songs I have ever heard, which says a lot coming from an armchair feminist, but lecherous younger men are warned here and now that any attempt to take the lyrics literally will result in me 'doing you' physical harm...unless you happen to be the artist.
6. SIR PSYCHO SEXY - RED HOT CHILLI PEPPERS. Yes, this song is the lyrical equivalent of an STD, but once again, it's just a song. Whatever conclusions less astute men may draw about me from it, I do not want to know.
5. DREAM A LITTLE DREAM - THE MAMAS AND THE PAPAS. There have been many versions of this song, but Cass Elliot's rendition is my favourite. I used to sing it to my son when he was a baby, and I like to listen to it on lazy Sunday afternoons when making a cup of tea and changing out of my pyjamas is the most activity I can muster. Would finding it on my Pod alongside Hendrix, The Beatles and The Doors out me as Hippie? Possibly. Do I care?
4. SMILE - LILY ALLEN. Lily's songs sound like sweet indie pop, but her lyrics soon put paid to the idea of categorising her in any way, which is exactly what's so cool about her. Before I play this to any man, I plan to explain to him that the only revenge I ever got on a guy was through my blog. Yeah, that'll put his fears to rest.
3. THERE IS A LIGHT THAT NEVER GOES OUT - THE SMITHS. A lot of Morrissey's tunes have a touch of that emo 'let's slash our wrists and bleed out together' sensibility about them, and I couldn't really blame a guy for being put off by lyrics like 'If a double-decker bus kills the both of us, to die by your side is such a heavenly way to die.' I don't suppose chasing him down the driveway yelling 'Please come back! I'm not emo, I swear!' would help matters, either.
2. SEETHER - VERUCA SALT. What does a song about a chick tending her own garden say about me? Who the hell cares when the guitar's this good?
1. HE'S MY THING - BABES IN TOYLAND. It's no secret that I love my 'grunge' rock, and Babes in Toyland are about as 'grunge' as you can get. Lyrics like 'He's my thing, I keep on a hook,' might give men the impression that I have psycho sexual, homicidal tendencies, but hey, whatever keeps a relationship interesting.
*Note: the above remark was a joke. My house has no basement, nor do I own butchery implements with which to restrain unsuspecting men. I still have to watch horror movies in the daylight, for Pete's sake!
The most any half way intelligent man is going to glean about me from this will probably be that my musical tastes are somewhat bi-polar, and there's nothing wrong with that. I'll have no qualms about handing over my iPod to my next boyfriend and letting him scroll through three hundred of my favourite songs, because I don't happen to be attracted to judgemental people. Besides, if anything is going to scare him off, it'll be my mother!