If a song in my formative years took away some of my innocence, it was Baby Got Back by Sir Mix-a-Lot. “Baby Got Back” was certainly a phrase I’d never heard growing up in Portland. But as soon as this song came on the scene in 1992, my sixth grade class could not stop talking about derrieres.
In my pubescent naivety, I thought that all boys were solely turned on by breasts. And I’d heard about the hourglass body type, so curvy waists and hips made sense. But until I started listening to Sir Mix-a-Lot’s ode to the female rumpus, I had no idea that men liked butts. Especially big ones.
Not only was the song a learning experience, my innocent Mormon girl brain was blown by watching the music video. Full of innuendos (bright yellow bananas suddenly standing on end) and tight and skimpy shaking lady parts…no wonder my parents scolded me when they caught me watching it.
I didn’t feel comfortable asking my parents about some of the things in it, so I headed to my trusted resource, a giant Merriam Webster dictionary. I looked up “prostitute” and “horny” and learned just enough to blush and to grasp the meaning of the overheard conversations of the boys in my school class.
“My anaconda don’t want none unless you’ve got buns, hun!”
I don’t think I understood what an anaconda was until my late teens.Yep, I used to be totally naive and sheltered. Oh, how that’s changed.
My daughter has heard Baby Got Back more times than I can count, and that’s mostly because it’s prevalence in pop culture. And I’ve got in on my iPod. It’s catchy, and with the sexualization of the media in the past 20 years, it’s not as shocking as it was to a tween in the 90’s. It scares me how much my daughter already knows, and can only imagine the things she is learning from media that she doesn’t talk about. I’m glad she is so open to talking to me about sex and other mature subjects. I know a lot of kids rely on the internet for answers and don’t dare ask their moms and dads.
I guess having an open mind about things helps. And a sense of humor.
It cracks me up when I go to blog conferences, and the intro begins playing in the ballroom. EVERY 30something blogger begins rapping and shaking their booty. It’s one of the songs of my generation, for better or worse, and almost everybody knows the words.
So ladies, if the butt is round,
And you want a triple X throw down,
And kick them nasty thoughts
Baby got back!