Thursday, June 14, 2007

Monkey business

I mentioned earlier this week that Curious George is one of my heroes. He’s one cool monkey. We were reacquainted a few years ago when our boys discovered George.

I’m also a big Jack Johnson fan. To me he’s a contemporary Jimmy Buffett, swapping surfboard for sailboat. One of his more popular tunes is Upside Down, which I just discovered is the theme song to George’s latest flick. As I shuttled four seven-year-olds yesterday to a last-week-of-school fieldtrip, Upside Down charmed through the CD player. “It’s the Curious George song,” one of my son’s friends exclaimed. “I love this tune!”

George + Johnson + Upside Down. The lyrics resonated:

Who's to say
What's impossible
Well they forgot
This world keeps spinning
And with each new day
I can feel a change in everything
And as the surface breaks reflections fade
But in some ways they remain the same
And as my mind begins to spread its wings
There's no stopping curiosity
My Volvo-entrapped kids screamed the lyrics, but I’m not sure if they got it. Jack Johnson continued:
Who's to say
I can't do everything
Well I can try
And as I roll along I begin to find
Things aren't always just what they seem
Correction: The kids get it, but I don't think they connected the lyrics with their actions. Who’s to say what’s impossible? Until children are normalized by society, next to nothing is impossible (in their minds). Who’s to say I can’t do everything? Kids believe they can; they live in a “yes, and …” world, not a “yeah, but” universe like most adults. As my mind begins to spread its wings, there’s no stopping curiosity. Unfortunately, most adults clip their cerebral wings, shelve their curiosity, and forget that the world keeps spinning.

Long live George.

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