Fourth GradePosted on 11 December 2012 | 4 comments
This week I introduced my fellow carpooler to Christmas in the Stars, the Star Wars Christmas album (which is completely unrelated to the Star Wars holiday special). This was one of my few records (that’s right a record) when I was a kid, and I completely and totally loved it. (I also had an Air Supply album and Mickey Mouse Disco. Aside from those, my music exposure until 5th grade was primarily Elvis and country music. I know, it’s kind of tragic.)
Anyway, as we listened to the album (it was released on CD in the 1990s and I now have it on my iPod), I thought back to 4th grade. My teacher was Miss Hurst. (Or was it Mrs. Hurst? I don’t remember.) For our school’s Christmas assembly, our class sang two songs from that album: “What Can You Get a Wookiee for Christmas” and “Merry, Merry Christmas” (I think that was also the year we sang “Chestnuts Roasting On an Open Fire”). I remember enjoying singing them both, but as I looked back yesterday – now separated from that time by decades – they seem like really, really weird choices. And I kind of love Miss Hurst for it.
As a related memory, at some other time she taught our class “One Tin Soldier”. (We sang quite a few songs that year. I think she really liked music.) I remember singing it in the car with my mom one day, and my mom was quite displeased. She didn’t like the song. Didn’t like that it justified violence. I tried to explain that it was actually the opposite (it’s a hippie anti-war song, though I wouldn’t have known to describe it in those words back then). She didn’t buy my explanation, and I was frustrated. I don’t know if I wasn’t singing enough of the song for her to understand the full lyrics (likely), or if she thought I wasn’t bright enough to understand irony, but we reached an impasse and I stopped singing the song in her presence since she clearly just didn’t get what seemed so obvious to me. I still really, really like that song.