Well, to be fair, meaningless fun has its place, and time. There`s not much of a case if one wants to argue in defense of a fun fair. Or WWE Wrestling shows. Or getting hammered on a Tuesday. While watching the World Championship of Snooker. Or hundreds of Asians trying to storm Takeshi`s Castle. Nevertheless, it is also a hard case to argue that doing these things is not fun.
But in recent times, I get the feeling that the meaninglessness is reaching a territory that I try to hold very dearly: popular music.
When I turn on the radio these days, I hear J-Lo telling me that she is not my mama. This message does not hold much meaning for me as this is a piece of information of which I was very sure before already. I do not recall Miss Lopez ever really being around at our household, I have no fond memories of her picking me up and taking me home after Kindergarden, and my birth certificate does not state “Lopez” as my last name.
On the contrary, I have a built-in impulse to start dancing when I hear a great song, I can move my hips presumably well for a male and I tend to look much younger than I actually am.
Nevertheless, the case is crystal clear: J-Lo ain`t my mama. Which is all well and good, as I would never want to exchange my real mama. Or the very un-mama-like fantasies with Miss Lopez.
Also, of course, I know that the phrase is not meant literally. It is rather used it in a metaphorical way. Sending a message. Blowing the horn of feminism. Our Jenny is on a mission. Far beyond the block.
But is she really? I was wondering. I mean, just a few years back, her message was “Dance for your Papi”, nothing wrong with good old fashioned relationship roles back there it seems. Is it all just for sales, ridin` the fem-train to cash county?
She could never admit that, of course. Because, you see, that`s the difference between Rock and Pop music: as a Rockstar, if your attitude is spelling “Fuck em all, I am just doing this for the money and the fame”, you`re a rebel. Same statements in the pop business and you`re a fraud.
So it could well be that the whole thing secretly really is just for the money and some bearded, mid-50 high-professional pop-writer sat at his desk, no pants, a bottle of scotch, smoking cigarette after cigarette, typing away: “…ain`t gonna do your laundry…we used to be – crazy in love…”
No, wrong: Meghan Trainor wrote the song, burning her torch now no longer only for the slightly overweight but all womankind. Or at least the ones in somehow ungrateful relationships. With the characteristic trait of low self-esteem seemingly linking the two.
But then again, no: even high self-esteem can be lead astray in a society that teaches you the wrong standards: Be slim, be obedient, stay at home, take care of the kids, do the laundry, cook dinner, don`t dream about a career or ,god forbid, equal pay, dance for your papi, this is a man`s world.
But it would be nothing, NOTHING – without, a woman or a girl (Dm-Am-Dm-Am…). Thank you, James. So the standards need some changin`. And I am all for that change. So I do believe Miss Lopez takes it seriously and is in it for more than the money. And I rally to her call. In spite of being a man, without the body issues or a dysfunctional relationship. Right now at least.
And one day, in a world where Kate Upton is no longer labeled “plus-size” but simply “incredibly hot”, I am going to be a happy stay at home dad. I`ll do the cooking, the laundry and take care of the kids. And when she comes home in the evening, after a tough but well paid day of modeling, she might even do a little dance for me.
So it seems, that in the end J-Lo has a meaningful message to tell me. And a strong one, too.
Even though it somehow implies that it`s okay to clean, cook and sit at home if you are indeed a mama. Which it is not; at least not automatically; everybody should get a fair say in this.
And even though I can`t help to think that I and my fellow males get way more out of the classical booty-shakin` dance act at the end than the group of empowered women.
But no need to bash and criticize a song that I have come to like and find meaningful over the course of this treatment. Also, to be fair, there`ve really been real meaningless songs in the history of pop.
So in the end, this article is now in favor of a song it usually intended to ridicule. So maybe, after all, it is meaningless. But I hope it was still fun.