There are many sensations that take me back to my childhood. Most of them are musical. There are many songs that remind of a specific time in my life. Songs I clung to at that particular time.
Mostly, it’s music that takes me back. No tastes or smells take me back, really, because I don’t have the same tastes and smells around. I didn’t necessarily like the food I was raised on. It wasn’t that my mom was a bad cook (dad rarely cooked) although there were some adventures in the kitchen. She just made Italian food which, even though I’m part Italian, I really don’t care for. I don’t particularly care for any type of tomato sauce. So things like spaghetti, lasagna, chicken parmesan, and other classic Italian dishes aren’t things I eat. So I’m therefore never reminded much of my childhood by food or smell. Plus, my mom is diabetic and has heart disease so she can’t eat any of the food we were raised on anyway so she no longer makes it.
I guess for the sake of this post I should just pick a song and go with it otherwise I could be here rambling all day about what songs remind me of what.
Hmmm….give me a minute. I’ll be right back after I pick a song.
After much debating with myself (it really was quite grueling and agonizing) I settled on Welcome to the Jungle, by GNR. I settled on this song for a couple of reasons. One, it’s a kick-ass song. Two, it represented a very good time in my life.
You see, this song unwittingly became a rallying cry for my favorite NFL team, the Cincinnati Bengals. The song was released and became wildly popular the year the Bengals last went to the Superbowl. Riverfront Stadium, which was where the Bengals played their home games at the time, was unofficially dubbed “The Jungle” that year due to that song. The song was played over and over in the stadium and on local radio to honor our team.
I became swept up, as most everyone around here did, with the associated mania of having your team go to the Superbowl. It was all Bengals all the time. That meant listening to Welcome to the Jungle often, and also listening to the Who Dey Rap (horrible song warning) constantly, too. We were all enjoying the two weeks leading up to the Superbowl. It was all Bengals all the time. Everyone was wearing orange and black. An entire community was united behind a single idea. Despite the fact that we were all united over a silly game, we were still united. I, sadly, became a devoted fan of the Bengals during that year, and they’ve largely sucked since then.
Listening to Welcome to the Jungle often reminds me of that time. I was so young and so excited that MY team might win the Superbowl, which of course they didn’t. Fucking Joe Montana. Anyhow, Welcome to the Jungle is still a mainstay of the Bengals. It still is played before every kick-off. Paul Brown Stadium, the current home of the Bengals, is unofficially referred to as “The Jungle.” Welcome to the Jungle is still one of my favorite songs and I’ll never know if it’s because of those times or because the song is really that good.
Query: What about you, dearest Stuph Maphia™? What song takes you back?