Sonatas or Silly Symphonies?
by Mad Dog
Fathers, not wanting to be left out, strapped
headphones to their testicles so they could boost their sperms IQ. Yes, the
passengers on the Titanic were right when they said: "Its never too soon to go
|| The debate over the Mozart Effect is in full blast. For those of you who have
been too busy calling Ticketmaster to see when seats for Allie McBeal On Ice go on sale to
be paying attention, the Mozart Effect isnt the deep slumber you fall into at a
classical concert, its the idea that young children can grow smarter by listening to
started a couple of years ago when a group of scientists, realizing that one day Id
need something to write about, decided to see if they could find a correlation between
listening to Mozart and the ability to keep government grant money flowing into their
personal bank accounts. They took a bunch of college students and subjected themI
mean, had them listento classical music. When they woke up, the students were
subjected to a battery of tests. It turned out that the students performance
improved on spatial imagery taskswhich sounds suspiciously like daydreaming to
mefor an impressive "few minutes."
This being the Age of Unchecked Extrapolation, that was all
parents across the country needed to hear. They immediately sat their children down and
made them listen to symphonies. The kids, wanting to know why they were being punished,
had to be fooled, so they were told they were listening to a new form of Wolfgangsta rap
by DJ Im A Deuce Most-Art. Word!
Pregnant mothers, being the impatient things they are,
didnt want to wait until the kids were born so they put speakers against their
stomachs in the hopes that the unborn fetuses would grow smart at the same time they were
growing fingers. Fathers, not wanting to be left out, strapped headphones to their
testicles so they could boost their sperms IQ. Yes, the passengers on the Titanic
were right when they said: "Its never too soon to go overboard."
Birds are a big problem at airports because they get sucked into jet engines during
takeoff and landing. Sure theyre spit out the back where they become your in-flight
meal, but face it, not everyone wants to eat poultry when they fly.
|| The idea of
keeping kids quiet while making them smarter sounded so good that the states of Georgia
and Tennessee gave newborn parents a copy of the CD "Hooked on Subsidies". In
Florida they passed a law that toddlers in state-run schools have to listen to classical
music every day. Were determined to raise a generation of smart, cultured kids if it
The problem is there may not be a Mozart Effect after
all. So far no one has been able to prove that it works. And no scientist has been able to
reproduce the original results, which were, you remember, with college students not
The idea that music has an effect on us is nothing new.
Ancient civilizations knew it. Parents who tried to ban early rock n roll knew it.
Hell, Muzak has known about it for years, which is why they keep filling our heads with
melodies designed to calm, soothe, and numb. And it works. Face it, theres nothing
like sitting in the dentists chair listening to 101 Strings do their version of
White Zombies "More Human Than Human" to make the pain from a root canal
Convenience stores have played Beethoven in the parking lot to
keep gangs from hanging out. In Minneapolis they broadcast classical music to keep kids
off the streets at night. Even the U.S. Army used music as a weapon when they tried to
drive Manuel Noriega out of the Vatican Embassy in Panama City by blasting "Beat
It", "Youre No Good", "Nowhere to Run", and "I Fought
the Law" 24-hours a day. True, it didnt work, but thats only because they
played the wrong music. They should have been playing Tina Turner.
This worked like a charm at an airport in Gloucestershire
(pronounced: Worchestershire), England. For years they broadcast recordings of avian
distress calls trying to keep the birds off the runways. Birds, you see, are a big problem
at airports because they get sucked into jet engines during takeoff and landing. Sure
theyre spit out the back where they become your in-flight meal, but face it, not
everyone wants to eat poultry when they fly.
Apparently turkey vultures are chickens and puke when theyre scared. This makes for
a real mess which could be avoided if theyd start playing Tina Turner records.
|| Usually birds
stay away when they hear distress calls, but like those people in horror movies who
venture into the dark basement even though a booming, ominous voice tells them to
"GET OUT!" (not to mention everyone in the theater), sometimes birds do the
opposite of what youd expect. As proof, when airport officials started playing Tina
Turner over the P.A.voila!the birds flew off and stayed away.
I dont know why the birds dislike Tina Turner so
muchor who even thought of using her when Michael Bolton, Hansen, and Yoko Ono CDs
are availablebut someone should tell the authorities in Merced, California about
this. Theyve been desperately trying to get rid of 200 turkey vultures which took up
residence there. Contrary to what youre thinking, turkey vultures arent the
local slang for lawyers. That would not only be a cheap shot but redundant.
Instead of music or distress calls, officials in Merced have been using machines which
make loud noises, causing the birds to fly off and throw up. Its true. Apparently
turkey vultures are chickens and puke when theyre scared. This makes for a real mess
which could be avoided if theyd start playing Tina Turner records.
If this works for birds maybe it will work for mice too. In
Orange County, Florida mice have recently invaded some 10,000 homes. Its gotten so
bad that Governor Jeb "Im the smart brother" Bush pledged $200,000 in
state funds to help battle the rodents. That should do the trick since its more than
enough to buy a copy of Tina Turners Greatest Hits CD for every infested homeowner.
In fact, if Florida officials are smart shoppers theyll wait for the CDs to go on
sale and have enough left over to pick up some Mozart for the kids.
But lets hope no one makes a mistake and plays the wrong
CD for the wrong crowd. The last thing we need in this world is more kids flying the coop
and smarter mice running around the house.
©1999 Mad Dog Productions, Inc. All
These columns appear in better newspapers across the country. Read
them while listening to Tina Turner singing Mozart.