They listen to Hannah Montana at daycare. Kate sings the songs with a heartfelt sincerity and passive aggressively bemoans the fact that she owns no Hannah Montana music of her own. "Some things should just be special to daycare" I say. Meanwhile, my panicked brain searches back into my own childhood for exactly when the noxious bubblegum music held sway.
As far as I can tell, I largely avoided it. If there was a period during which I fully embraced such painful pop I would have to say the tween years. I fully expected I'd have until then before Kate and Sarah got hooked on the stuff. I loved the Go-Gos Talk Show but I'm certain I was 11 at the time. The Go-Gos were Keith's fault. For Christmas or maybe my birthday he got me that LP. Later he would make me the proud owner of my first Motels cassette. I came early to angst, though, and I recall in 1986 firmly deciding that top 40 music was no longer good. I did not accept that it had never been good and indeed, I still love much of the tripe I adored in those early years because it was the soundtrack of my childhood. In 1986 though, I noticed the suckiness of it all. Bring on The Cure, The Smiths, The Ramones, Guadalcanal Diary, New Order and an alarming quantity of black clothing...here come the teen years.
The fact that Kate's gotten started at 4 makes me wonder if I should steel myself for a much earlier sex talk, too. I don't know, but that's not what I'm here to talk about today. While I've so far managed to hold the Hannah Montana infiltration at bay ( I assume that girl got her shot at the biz when they realized she was the daughter of Billy Ray Cyrus and listened to her patiently because they thought it was likely she was mildly retarded) I was unprepared for the latest. My sister-in-law Diane mailed a late Christmas gift to the kids. Sleeping bags that LIGHT UP. One Tinker Bell and one Dora. Along with that gift came a little something for me. She'd drawn my name in our family Christmas gift drawing and meant to send this item along as a joke. I opened it. The box contained the softest pajama bottoms I've ever seen. "Hannah Montana" is inscribed all over them. Kate actually laughed and pointed at me.
Here's how I know I am old. Though horrified at the branding I wear these jammies because they are the softest, warmest things I've come into contact with in ages. Curse you Miley Cyrus. And curse your greedy producers.