Friday, July 18, 2008

Does your mother know?

Everybody and their mom is talking about The Dark Knight today and god knows I want to see it too, but I've got something else on my mind right this minute.

Mamma Mia.

Yes, the ABBA movie. Today this movie is a bittersweet film for me.

When I was a little girl my mom used to teach sign language to teenagers by using ABBA songs. This was before the Internet and before CDs and Itunes and other such nonsense, so we listened to records, then eventually upgraded to tapes. So Mom had to listen to each song over and over and write down the words so she could figure out how to sign them. And I helped.

That means I know how to sign bits of "Dancing Queen," "Take a Chance on Me" and "Knowing Me, Knowing You" among others. Just bits, though. Oddly enough I can also sign the chorus to "Three Times a Lady."

But this is about ABBA.

There was a brief period when I was in college when my mom and I spent a Christmas without Stepfather. Now I love Stepfather, but he was always kind of an anal bastard about decorating the tree. Every light had to be just so and every ornament had to be perfectly placed in the right spot to impress anyone who walked in the door, and if it wasn't exactly right he'd tear everything off the tree and start over.

So this one year when Mom and I got to decorate the tree we had a field day. We threw the lights up all willy-nilly, we put ugly ornaments in front, we mixed colored lights with white lights with blinky lights and had a good time doing it. And we listened to ABBA. Specifically "Does Your Mother Know That You're Out" over and over and over all afternoon.

One year for Christmas my parents bought me the three disk ABBA greatest hits set. The next year for my mother's birthday I copied them onto tapes so she could listen to ABBA in the car.

I always wanted to go see the live musical with my mom but it just kind of never came up.

So when I saw ads for Mamma Mia show up on TV I got excited.

The other day when Officer Beefcake and I were eating pizza on Larchmont some promotional weirdos for the movie marched by with a boom box and beach balls videotaping themselves singing "Dancing Queen." Of course I immediately chimed in and may have ended up on the video, which is probably a special feature for the DVD so, you know, I might be on there. Officer Beefcake was disgusted because beefcakes are morally opposed to ABBA. They prefer Van Halen.

So I'm all excited about Mamma Mia. It's the perfect movie for me and my mom to go see together.

Except that Mom lives in North Carolina and I live in Los Angeles. So today, for the first time in almost four years, I am homesick.


  1. Anonymous12:36 PM

    I love me some Abba, sure enough. I've got all their stuff in mp3.

  2. If you can get him to go, I'll buy you a steak dinner! He has to stay for the whole thing, though.

  3. You blow your lunch over SATC, but Mamma Mia makes you sing with human props on Larchmont? A woman of many contradictions, I see.

    ps. Two can plat at that game. You've inspired me to go shoot some guns.

  4. That's because Sex and the City is all about women who blow all their money on Manolos. Mamma Mia is about ABBA. And ABBA rocks the house.

    I hate shoes.

  5. At least you should be able to find a seat with all the biz Batman's doing.


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