Sedition, Fiddler on the Roof song

he can’t change it with a tweet

traditionLately, I’ve not slept well at all. I go to bed around 9:30 pm, wake up three hours later, stay up for an hour, and check my email.

The evening before last, I had been singing to myself “Sedition” to the tune of “Tradition”. It’s undoubtedly a function of two things, that post I wrote recently and my unabashed love for Fiddler on the Roof.  

I started jotting down notes from the emails. Suddenly, I had a few couplets, followed by a phrase that rhymes with sedition. I’ve barely edited them. Some of the rhymes are really forced. But I offer them up so that YOU might add to them, fix them, whatever.

Leave your suggestions in the comments on the blog or on Facebook. I’d be interested to see what you come up with.

The song, as it were

His faux regime refused to take the virus seriously
Engaged in partisan attacks – where is the PPE?
He hampered prevention, prevention.

The country’s finally seeing through his xenophobic lies
His anti-immigrant retorts should be something we despise
The bigot’s agnation, agnation.

His foolish quest to stay in charge is led by Sidney Powell
And Rudy Giuliani, whose hair dye is a howl
The lawyers’ deception, deception.

IMPOTUS plans to give some pardons to his family
Just like he did for Michael Flynn and Scooter Libby
The pardon provision, provision.

The Electoral College proves his constitutional defeat
Yet he keeps up denying; he can’t change it with a tweet
He stuck in delusion, delusion

Franklin Graham Says Trump ‘Will Go Down in our history
As one of the Great Presidents’ – I think he’s cra-a-zy
No state church in our nation, our nation.

He inflames radicals who hijack our society
They threaten civil servants who just want us to be free
Tyrannical sedition, sedition.

Monday Monday; no, wrong Mamas & Papas song

I’m listening to the Coverville podcast a few months ago, as I usually do a couple of times a week. Brian was doing the Mondegreen episode, a term that, if I had heard it, I had forgotten. The definition, which I stole from somewhere: “Misheard lyrics (also called mondegreens) occur when people misunderstand the lyrics in a song. These are NOT intentional rephrasing of lyrics, which is called parody.” There are whole websites devoted to this issue.

The last song on the show, not only had I gotten wrong for years, but have SUNG it incorrectly when performing with my sister.

The correct lyric is:

stopped into a church
I passed along the way
well, I got down on my knees
and I pretend to pray

Yet all these years, I had been hearing:
and I began to pray

To be fair to me, many other people of my vintage heard it the same way. I know this because I asked a number of them. And it is noted as a common error in Kiss This Guy, named after a misheard line from Jimi Hendrix’s Purple Haze: “Excuse me while I kiss the sky.”

I never misheard that Hendrix lyric or this line from California Dreamin’ offered up by Am I Right?
Misheard Lyrics:
You know you’re preaching like the Pope.
Original Lyrics:
You know the preacher likes the cold.

But the one I DID mishear I’ve thought about a number of times since. Seems that the fact that the verse has three verbs in the past tense (stopped, passed, got) tunes the ear for a fourth (began) rather than a present tense verb such as pretend. They COULD have sung “pretended” and I don’t think it ruins the scansion. Here are the complete lyrics.

BTW, what linguistic tool is being used when you speak in the present tense about things that happened in the past? “So I go to the store. I see an item I want. I buy it.” Past action, but present tense verbs.

Anyway, HERE is a version of the hit song that only went to #4 in the US charts in 1966 by the Mamas and the Papas, and HERE is another. The song is attributed to John Phillips and Michelle Gilliam.

John eventually married and divorced Michelle. John performed this version on his album Phillips 66, which was released posthumously in 2001; he would have been 75 today. Michelle Phillips is the remaining survivor of the Mamas and the Papas.

What lyrics have YOU misheard, and how did you finally figure it out?

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