Sep 17, 2010

I stood there with my mouth agape

When I was in high school, I heard the song More than Words on the radio one afternoon.

I heard it, and I loved it. It was a beautiful acoustic ballad that sounded like it was sung by two guys, but they didn't sound familiar to me. I basically became obsessed with it and listened to the radio nonstop, always hoping that it would come on sooner or later -- much the way I'd been with Richard Marx's Right Here Waiting two years before. (I'd lay awake on a school night listening to my brown clock radio until 3 a.m., waiting for that song to come on. It usually paid off. I was weird.)

Anyway, this was back in the day before Wikipedia and Google ... before the Internet as a whole, actually. 1990, otherwise known as The Dark Ages. And it seemed like the DJ never gave the pertinent information like the artist's name or the name of the song when I was listening, and I didn't know how else to find out.

Enter my boyfriend at the time, Jason, who would have done anything for me. (He once filled my room with 144 red roses for Valentine's Day and 144 Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs for Easter. He was over. the. top.) I dropped by his house one day after school and he pulled a cassette tape out from behind his back. With the sun glinting off of the cellophane wrapper, I couldn't see what it was, but I eagerly grabbed it out of his hands.

And I saw THIS:

I stood there with my mouth hanging open. PORNOGRAFFITTI? (And misspelled, no less -- at least the "graffiti" part of the word. I don't remember that part, but on the ole Internet these days, it's misspelled on all of these album covers.) I was afraid to unwrap it because I had no earthly idea why he'd given it to me and I thought my parents would confiscate it if I took it home with me.

A gift from my boyfriend titled Pornograffitti? Yeah, THAT wasn't gonna fly at home.

He burst out laughing at the expression on my face.

Jason: "I know what you're thinking. This tape has that new song on it that you love."

Me: "WHICH song I love? I can't think of a song I love that would be on an album like this."

Jason: "Yeah, you know the one, More than Words or whatever. Something like that. I went to the record store and I kind of hummed it for the guy and told him some of the words, and he said this was it. And I TOLD HIM, 'Oh no. Nope. There's NO WAY my girlfriend would like a song from these people. You'd have to meet her, but, no.' But the guy swore to me that this was it. So I bought it for you!"

Me: "It can't be. I can't open this. My parents will kill me if I take this home."

Jason: "Let's open it and play it in my car and see."

See, not only was this way before iTunes, but it was also even before the music stores would let you open a tape or CD and listen to it on earphones so that you could decide whether or not you wanted to buy it before you left the store. THAT didn't happen until I got to college.

So we opened it and listened to it, and SURE ENOUGH, that acoustic, innocuous song was indeed on that album.

And that's how an "A" student who was at church every time the doors were open came to own a tape that included the words "porno" and "graffit(t)i" in the title.


paige said...

I love this story. Hilarious. You're such a wild thing now it's hard to believe.

Patrice said...

Well, that song is about S-E-X, so what did you expect? Where did I go wrong with you??? I'd call you a Heathen but I don't know how to spell it and I'm WAY too lazy to look it up.

Katherine @ Grass Stains said...

That song is about SEX? (I never listen to lyrics.)

Amy said...

Yep. S.e.x. Don't feel too bad. My hubby had to inform me that our 8 year old singing "I want your vertical stick" from Lady Gaga's Bad Romance probably was not in good taste.

Lacy said...

Well... learn something new every day. I SO didn't know that song was about S-E-X... but I just read the lyrics and I supposed that it is! WOW! I loved that song though! And the video!

Rachel said...

You're hilarious! And I love how you noticed the spelling right away too.

Sarah T. said...

I can play that on the guitar. We could do a duet. But that would be very creepy on multiple levels.

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