I suppose it all started back in 1988 or so. See, my mother had grown up in a household where her father was an avid wrestling fan. She never cared for it, of course, but it remained part of her childhood. She wasn’t too thrilled when we started watching WWF Superstars, either, at tender young ages after our Saturday morning cartoons finished. It didn’t take long, however, to get her swept up in the drama. She had once been a great lover of soap operas, and reminiscence of the times with her father combined to form a great beginning platform for a ridiculously faithful wrestling fan. Our deviant behaviour quickly became a routine Saturday morning family activity.
Fast forwarding years later, my mother remained entrenched in professional wrestling fandom. Around ’97, she discovered dirt sheets on the Internet and this made the entire charade that much more entertaining for her. You haven’t lived until your mother is trying to explain to you everything that she knows to be right and true about wrestling.
It wasn’t too much longer after that, a handful of years, when the WWF/E began using lots of licensed music for everything from entrance themes to special video packages to promotions for pay-per-views. Many times, these songs used were brand new and easily embedded in wrestling fans’ minds as being synonymous with the WWE. It really wasn’t much different than the past, except now, you would hear the songs on mainstream radio and MTV in addition to in the ring.
For whatever reason, nearly ever song that would debut in the WWE this way would become a favorite of my mom’s. Granted, she always had varied taste in music — from Jimi Hendrix to Michael Bolton — but it became nearly ridiculous. Yes, I had to endure months of her tunelessly crooning along with “My Sacrifice.” Yes, I watched her getting far too excited over Kid Rock and Motorhead. But the biggest oddity of them all was the Drowning Pool song, “Bodies.”
My mother is not a small woman, nor is she a young woman. She’s never acted large or old and this had never bothered me until I saw her rocking out and singing along, “LET THE BODIES HIT THE FLOOR. LET THE BODIES HIT THE FLOOR.” This was some sort of alien parallel universe Mom. Okay, so this woman had also been known in previous times to put an empty Ziploc bag over her head and scream, “Time to make the doughnuts!” but even this was too surreal. For this type of music was clearly my territory — my place in life was to be the rebellious metalhead daughter. She was to be the mom. You know, the mom. THE MOM, not throwing up the horns.
I honestly had never seen my mom like this. Something about “Bodies” must have spoken directly to her soul. She asked me if I would burn her a mix CD featuring it and that damned Creed song. You couldn’t even bring up the song in any type of conversation without her starting to bang her head. It was downright disturbing. Amusing at times, usually somewhat embarrassing, but always disturbing.
My younger sister had been away at college for the majority of this phenomenon. So it was only fitting when I joined my mother as we drove the ninety minute trip to her campus and picked her up for lunch when what should appear on the local rock station than a certain particular song I had grown to fear. Although for some reason, the anticipation of seeing my mother’s antics in front of my sister for the first time completely overrode any potential embarrassment.
Mother, she did not disappoint. As the opening whispers gave way into the full strains of song, Mom reached over and cranked up her Bose speakers and began thrashing her curly red hair like crazy. My sister looked nothing short of confused. “Mom? Mom… what… what are you doing?” I couldn’t keep it together at all and collapsed into a fit of insane giggles in the backseat.
“Mom, will you watch the road!” my sister was yelling as my mother continued, now yelling along with the chorus with the windows rolled down in her monsterous Caprice Classic. At this point, I didn’t care if we had hit a tree. My sister flipping out and fearing for her life coupled with this crazy woman behind the wheel screaming along to nu-metal was the most hilarious sight my eyes had seen in a long time. I was laying across the backseat at this point, screaming along with my mom. I could imagine us hitting a parked car and trying to explain the situation to the attending officer, and I burst into another fit of laughter.
But soon, the funnies subsided, and my paralyzed sister was left to learn that her life had been put in danger thanks to the good folks at the WWE who had found some way to implant this song into my mother’s mind and make her go completely insane whenever she heard it. While this explanation did nothing to ease the concern and fears of my poor sister, at least the weirdness now clicked. Normal people would never do these things, but under the influence of the McMahons, my mother was helpless. This incident could now be entirely chalked up to yet another one of my mom’s quirks, and all was forgotten.
This was neither the first nor the last time an incident like this would happen with “Bodies.” It came up again over Christmas dinner. It came up while chit-chatting with me and her co-workers. The song refused to die, unlike its singer. Even today, if I were to unearth that mix CD that I burned for my mother (which remains hidden to avoid hearing Creed at top volume and sung off-key), I guarantee the same result would occur.
Well, hell. I guess she really felt something special with that damned song. Unfortunately, half of her genes were passed down to me. This is my future. Read ’em and weep.
Nothin’ wrong with me — yet,