While my aunt was making her secret visit this weekend, she brought a belated Christmas gift for my son. Somehow she’d managed to misplace it during the actual Christmas season, only to find it right before his birthday. Then she lost it again. In an attempt to give it to him while he might still be entertained by it (and before he graduated from college), she handed it over.
The tiny bag and thin CD case made it an easy candidate for getting lost, especially among all of her clutter. The CD was one of those specialty ones sold at mall kiosks across the nation: Mickey, Minnie and Goofy singing famous children’s songs. According to my aunt, every single song on the CD uses my son’s name. Even the dialog inbetween songs directly addresses my son. And not just once, but often.
I popped the disk in this morning on our drive to the repair shop to get my air-conditioning leak looked at. The CD started right off with my son’s name. Mickey gushed about how happy he was my son would be joining him in a sing-a-long and then proceeded to sing the “Mickey Mouse Club Theme,” inserting my baby’s name as his helper. He even thanked my son for doing such a great job leading the band.
After the Goofy joined in to take my son out to the ballgame, I started getting more than a little nostalgic.
See when I was a little girl, not too much older than my baby is now, someone bought me a flimsy 45 for my record player. It looked like something that could be pulled off of a cereal box, but I knew it was made just for me, because Zoom,* the spaceman whose voice boomed over my speakers, sang out my name. It was a birthday song, and at the time, I thought I was the only one in the world with something so special.
Every year on my birthday, I pulled that little record out from inside my Muppet Movie LP cover (it had an equally flimsy paper cover that was quickly lost) and I played it over and over again, just listening to Zoom telling me about his great search for my birthday present. Even now the song is burned into my memory:
“My name is Zoom and I live on the moon/but I came down to Earth just to sing you this tune, cause beetqueen, it’s your birthday today/a present for you I wanted to find/an outer space creature/a one of a kind…”
And then he started naming a lot of ridiculous creature names I can’t remember now because they were gibberish even then. Unfortunately Zoom couldn’t find anything quite special enough for me, so he wrote me a song instead. And at the very end, he wished me a happy birthday and promised to see me next year.
And he did. At least until I was 14 and my mother sold all my possessions off when I moved out of her house and into my dad’s. If she hadn’t, I kind of think I’d still be taking that 45 out and playing it each year. I’m not really sure on what since I no longer have a record player. Then again, maybe I would have kept that red and white striped portable record player. If I’d been able to.
My son is a bit young to realize that instead of singing about “this old man,” Minnie Mouse is attributing all the actions to him. As he gets a little older, I have a feeling that like me, he will get a kick out of thinking his Disney buddies are talking just to him. It made me feel special and I know it will do the same for him. I remember the wonder at hearing my name on that record and I can only anticipate his.
To be a kid again….
*After writing this I went on line and found the website for this CD. I am not only buying my son one, but might just buy myself one too! I am so EXCITED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!