One of my worst fears came true last night when I found a CD of Poison’s “Flesh & Blood” tucked under my son’s bed. My first instinct of course was to take it outside, burn it in, and forbid my son from leaving the house until his formative years were passed, but then what would he learn? I decided to take the old-school carton of cigarettes approach. I made him listen to the whole thing, start to finish.
Listen, I know it’s in every boy’s nature to explore his taste, but if there’s one thing i just won’t tolerate it’s glam metal. It’s a slippery slope. Soon those pop-influenced catchy hooks and guitar riffs will turn into slow power ballads and next thing I know he’s begging me to buy him Styx tickets.
He even tried to play it off by saying, “I’m just holding it for a friend.” Did this kid think I was born yesterday? As I was pressing play he confessed “Okay, okay. I just listened to ‘Unskinny Bop’ and then turned it off, I swear!”
Suddenly written-off moments took on new meaning. The accumulated headbands in his closet, the missing hair spray from my wife’s collection, and that one time when he asked if I’ve seen The Decline of Western Civilization Part II. This boy needed to learn his lesson so I shut the door, blasted the volume as high as it goes and started “Strange Days of Uncle Jack”.
I could tell he was a little excited but that excitement didn’t last long. When “Swampjuice” began he asked, “Are we really gonna listen to the entire thing?” And just as I suspected, during “Let it play” he started to beg. “Dad, please. Make it stop. I promise I won’t listen again.” No dice son. This if for your own good.
There was a moment during “Life Goes On” where I thought he was going to pass out but the boy powered through. His tears did nothing but convince me to keep going. Of course, halfway through the guitar solo in “Something To Believe In” he started to vomit up his dinner. The episode continued through “Ball and Chain” and ended in the middle of “Life Loves A Tragedy,” which was to be expected.
As “Poor Boy Blues” began I could see life return to his eyes but that quickly changed when the drums came in. His body began to shiver and before I knew it, he was out before the last harmonica solo. This was sure to be the longest 57 minutes and 38 seconds of his life but maybe now he’ll think twice before bringing upbeat rock anthems into this house again.