Edd’s MANtra: Nostalgia is cool, sometimes

By the time you read this, the wifey and I will be enjoying a week of relaxation in Birmingham, Ala. And not a moment too soon, because I was ready to go on a Chaka Zulu-like rampage through my office building.

In preparation for the six-hour road trip, I decided to cobble together a mixtape of old songs. I was in the mood to hear some of those banging songs from my youth, you know, the joints from junior high. I downloaded TLC’s “Baby Baby Baby,” and while listening to it I was shocked to come to this realization:

T-Boz can’t sing.

Don’t get me wrong, that didn’t ruin the enjoyment of the song. But I, in my warped middle school mind, considered T-Boz to be a pretty good vocalist. Imagine my surprise when I heard Oscar the Grouch with emphysema.

Nostalgia is a dangerous thing. It has a way of twisting your mind to think that something that was pretty bad was actually pretty good. Think about, were those pizzas you ate for lunch in school really that good? You know, the rectangular ones with the square pepperoni? Was the Real World always embarrassing and cringe-worthy? Were Cross Colour clothes EVER attractive?

Oh, don’t front. Ladies, you used to think THESE FOOLS were sex symbols:

But wouldn’t it be fun to go back to those innocent days? That’s why I admire our children. While working with my youth group at church, I always marvel at their cluelessness. While I have no desire to mix flaming hot Cheetos with my ice cream, maybe we can take a cue from them. Sure, they don’t see Lil Wayne as the anorexic Predator that he is, but they have fun listening to his music. And yeah, they’ll blindly run into four lanes of traffic to get a 99 cent Nerf football and not think about the consequences, but hey, they got the ball, right?

It’s easy to consider such behavior dumb, but I think it’s dumb legions of girls were in love with effeminate boys dressed like pirates.

What I’m saying is that in our world filled with economic hopelessness and depression and sucky music, I admire the innocence of a child. Even when they don’t realize that their favorite female singer sounds like James Earl Jones.


  1. LOL! dont hate on TLC i have the greatest hits CD and i blast it constantly. And I’m mad you pulled out that Immature. Unlike most teenage girls i though they were lame!

  2. I too never had Da Munchies for Immature. I was however the C in TLC best believe!

  3. Good post..Since I was a pretty musical child, I think I always knew T-Boz couldn’t sing (Chilli really couldn’t either), but didn’t want to admit it. TLC was IT, and I could Creep way better than I could do the Butterfly! And I’ll be the third to agree Immature was super wack lol

  4. I was a huge TLC fan. People told me I looked like Chili and I was convinced I was her. LOL. Their songs were so empowering. They were like hip-hop feminist anthems even though feminist wasn’t really in my vocabulary back then. I always knew T-Boz’s voice was a little shaky but didn’t really even consider what she did singing. I thought it was meant to be some sing-songy rapping or something. But I liked it and I still do. And I could Creep like nobody’s business, Miss Jungle.

  5. Ok so so many memories on this one . . . Courtney was the C in TLC! Immature’s “Playtime Is Over” was the soundtrack to one of my relationships (I still love that one!)

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