Ok, I can already tell that this is going to be a muddled weirdness of random thoughts, so know that in advance. I'm all about informed consent.
Yesterday, on List of the Day, they featured the video of "Do They Know It's Christmas?" Here it is, if you don't remember it yourself. (Don't even turn it on if you don't want the sound of bells clanging in your head all day. Informed consent, you know.)
So anyway, Sarah, my 15-year-old inexplicably loves all things 80's. I don't say anything about it because there's not necessarily anything wrong with it, but it's a wonder to me. After all, I lived them. But I'll have to say that they were better than the 70's, which I also lived through. <Shudder>
I was playing that song this morning, hoping to get it out of my head (fat chance) and Sarah came to watch it and comment on the musicians we saw. We both agreed that Boy George applies makeup creepily well and that Simon LeBon was easy on the eyes. Then I was trying to tell her what the whole thing was about and realized that they were raising money for famine relief in Ethiopia.
By that point, the twins had picked up the song and were running around singing it, which totally weirded me out. I'm not necessarily someone who spends a lot of time contemplating irony (I do spend a lot of time laughing at it, which is something totally different) so I didn't want to spend time thinking about this but now I will. I don't know if the twins' birth parents were even alive when Band Aid recorded that song. I was 17. Surely their grandparents were alive. And here are the twins, with more than enough food, shelter, entertainment, etc., running around the house singing a song that was intended to raise money for famine relief in their native country. And they have absolutely no idea. I tried to explain it to them but they're four years old and living here. They don't understand. I'm happy about that, don't get me wrong. But there's something very poignant about the thought.
Anyway, since I didn't know all of the musicians and wanted to figure out who some of the main ones were, I looked up Band Aid on Wikipedia and followed links to my heart's content. In the process, I learned something about pop icons of the 80's as well as the recent history of Ethiopia. Of course, I had already known some of the history but when you're especially interested in something, it sticks better. It is sad to me that the opinion of some "famine scholars" (what a title!~) that Band Aid's efforts merely prolonged the war that was ongoing at that time as well as the human suffering. Yow.
So now I'm all kurfluffled, trying to get my job done and thinking about Ethiopia. Thinking about the things that I have to get done here in my life in the States and how utterly meaningless they are in the scheme of things. But I guess you have to do the job that is in front of you and try to do it well. To that end, I guess I'll enter more grades.