My daughter attends a private Christian school and I have sometimes led their Chapel sessions they have every day. While I am serious about my Christian faith, I enjoy singing fun so-called children’s songs. I wrote a parody song with accompanying PowerPoint slides called “The 10 Plagues on Egypt” about Moses and the Israelites from the Bible book of Exodus.
It uses the tune from the “The 12 Days of Christmas” and the slides are hilarious. I led it last year and once we were done I told the students that I had recently discovered an eleventh plague and started the song again. Number 11 was revealed as…Justin Bieber.
The whole school erupted in laughter when the slide was revealed. Well, except for a few diehard fans who were near tears.
Now, I don’t actually look upon Justin Bieber as a plague. In fact I don’t really want to know about him at all, but that has become impossible.
Growing up it was relatively easy to ignore teen heartthrob artists that only girls liked such as Leif Garrett, David Cassidy, Bobby Sherman and Andy Gibb. Unlike DR columnist Brad Stanhope, I never subscribed to Tiger Beat or Seventeen magazine and there’s no way you would catch me listening to any of their songs.
I was aware of later acts like New Kids on the Block, New Edition, Hanson, and most recently Aaron Carter, but they did not invade my space.
But I cannot escape the Bieber. With today’s massive interconnected media I happen to know that
- he was bested by Esparanza Spalding for the Best New Artist Grammy which triggered angry outbursts from fans, some of whom repeatedly vandalized the talented jazz artist’s Wikipedia page
- that he was voted the MVP of the NBA Celebrity All-Star game
- and that March 1st was his 17th birthday.
Then there was the “Glee”episode. And a reference on “The Office.” And the Best Buy commercial with Ozzy. Enough!
The Justin Bieber overexposure is too much to take. I’m not a hater, but it would be pretty easy to be one. I mean, the only song I knew by him was “Baby” and I have visions of the 1950’s Steve Allen routine where he would read rock and roll song lyrics as poetry with lilting piano in the background as the audience howled.
And I was like baby, baby, baby, oh
Like baby, baby, baby, no
Like baby, baby, baby, oh
I thought you'd always be mine
Not exactly Paul Simon (“Who?” just thunk the three teens who read this column)
I was also aware of a hilarious website called “Lesbians Who Look Like Justin Bieber” which allows gay young ladies to upload pictures of themselves and quite a few of them do look remarkably like the You Tube phenom. Evidently he co-opted their look and not vice-versa.
My 13-year old daughter Kaci of course likes the Biebster, but has played it cool. She really wanted to go see his movie “Never Say Never” but I put my foot down. I couldn’t see spending you know, actual American dollars on such claptrap.
Then I remembered something I always tell her and that’s the danger of practicing contempt prior to investigation. I’ve showed her great films like “12 Angry Men” and “Malcolm X” and “Amadeus” and she balked at them at first but soon discovered that dad was right (as always).
So I asked Kaci about other Justin Bieber songs and she said I should listen to the song “Pray.” I watched the video on You Tube and was genuinely touched at the images of sick and hurting people and especially those of the Bieb visiting Make-a-Wish children in hospitals and praying.
So I’m a fan now. The only thing is I have way too much bass in my voice for all that high-pitched screaming that is expected.
I also nixed the idea of getting a Bieber tattoo, but I am getting hair extensions so I can more closely resemble a lesbian.
Reach Fairfield freelance writer Tony Wade at email@example.com