Monday, September 14, 2009

What can I say? We lived in the country, you had to invent your own fun

The recent Bryan Adams sighting reminded me of some ridiculousness that my brother and sister and I got up to when we were tweens.
The song Everything I do (I do it for you) was my older sister's and her then boyfriend (now husband's) song. And we were desperate to gain some attention from her, seeing as she was now overwhelmingly fixed on her then boyfriend (now husband).
So, we pulled the usual antics: Sticking our head out the upstairs windows while they were saying good night and making kissing noises at them. Tell her then boyfriend (now husband) that he smelled. Telling our Mom that my sister was now wearing scented lip balm--cherry flavour with sparkles.
Anyway, it wasn't getting us the kind of attention we wanted...so we had a meeting over cookies and milk and decided that we needed to take some action.
That action came in the form of our local radio show called Top Ten at Ten.
Every night at ten o'clock Dan Foresta would play the songs that were most requested between the hours of 8 pm and 10 pm.
Everything I do (I do it for you) was slipping from it's top spot. In fact, it had plummeted to number 8!
"Not on our watch! Their song will soar!" was our unmentioned motto. And so we started calling the radio station requesting the song. We ran next door to my Grandma's house who after muttering as to why we were not in bed at 9:45 pm at night relented and let use the telephone. This was before the days of caller ID, but we could tell the deejay was getting suspicious and had already inquired once as to whether we had called and voted already.
That first night, we hid in our room and pretended we were sleeping. After all it was 10:00 pm at night. We should have been sleeping. But since our sister and her then boyfriend (now husband) weren't back yet, we figured we could push the envelope a bit.
To our great dismay, the song actually sank to number 10.
After singing along with Bryan Adams, my brother mentioned that we needed some re-enforcements and a new attack plan to keep it on the Top Ten. Hey, Mama didn't raise no fools.
The next day we each told our friends of our plan. And while most mocked and teased us, a few joined our quest and committed to calling in and voting.
Then we had to get creative and inventive. We would have to call more than once. We figured that we had to keep calling as much as we could possibly get away with. Our reconnaissance planning led us to the ingenious scheme:

1. Get in, get out and nobody gets hurt. The idea here is to call, make your request quickly, and thank dj Dan Foresta for taking our vote. This method worked successfully for about 5 phone calls.

2. When suspicions are aroused, act naive, act fast, and hang up. "Did I call before? You mean have I called and requested a song for the Top Ten at Ten before? Yeah, I called last night for the song "Everything I do (I do it for you)." I'd like to request that song again. Thanks, bye.

3. Deep Throat worked for Watergate, why can't it work for us? Each of us siblings have a talent for a different voice. I could do a Brooklyn impression, my sister could talk like an old woman and my brother did a female and an older male voice.

4. S.P.E.E.D. Swift,Persuasive,Two words that start with E, and Definite. Speed talk-give no chance for questions. Hi,mynameisAllieandIwanttogrequestthesongEverythingIDo(Idoitforyou)byBryanAdams.Thanks

5. Appeal to the Ego "Wow! Am I really talking to Dan Foresta? Really?I listen to your show every night! You're the best! I mean, the best! Wow! Dan Foresta...(lean back and say in a not so subtle stage whisper), 'Ames, I'm talking to Dan Foresta right now. I know!' My sister says you're the best,too! (wait patiently until you hear the sheepish chuckle from the local dj) Oh, I almost forgot, I'd like to request the song Everything I do (I do it for you). Thanks, Mr. Foresta. You're the best!

6. Go big or go home By this point, Dan Foresta is getting suspicious and has kindly mentioned one or two times that we can only call in once to vote...so now it's time to pull out the big guns. You have to create a power moment. And this was ours. We called in and my brother did a rap that went something like this:

We love the show Top Ten at Ten
We call and vote and call again
Tonight we'd like for song number one
To be Bryan Adams-that'd be fun
Everything I do (I do it for you)
That's the song we're singing too
So that's my vote, Dan Foresta
Goodnight man--you're the best-ah!

Ten o'clock came and my sister and her then boyfriend (now husband) were not back yet. We waited in the dark bedroom while my mother thought we were sleeping. The radio was turned on low and we cheered (quietly, so as not to let our mother in on our ruse) when song number ten turned out to be MeatLoaf and some song about Love and doing anything for it but he won't do that.
We held our breath at song 9 and 8. We crossed our fingers as song 7 and 6 went by.
"It has to be number 5. We called so many times my fingers are sore." (we had a rotary phone back then)
Number 5 came and went and so did number 4.
"If it's not number three, I'm going to go to bed. I bet Dan Foresta knew it was us the whole time and only counted it as three votes."
Number three wasn't Bryan Adams.
Neither was number two.
"This whole contest is rigged," my brother says. "You try and vote like a good citizen and nothing happens."
"Well, maybe good citizens only vote once."
"Exactly. Rigged, I tell you."
They take a commercial break, naturally. Suspense is killing us. Plus, you can only sit in a dark bedroom and fake sleeping so long before your mother gets suspicious as to why she can hear talking and giggling going on.
"What's going on here?" my mother says.
"Nothing."
"I don't know."
"Mom, it's good to see you."
We get the look, so out spills the story. She laughs and sits on our bed wondering if we got the song to number one.
"I don't know."
"It's rigged."
"It was number ten last night, I don't think we got it to number one tonight."
Suddenly, we hear Dan Foresta's voice coming through the speakers. We all lean in towards the radio as he says, "And in a stunning and dramatic comeback, we have a number one song that seemed to rocket to the top tonight due to some die-hard fans."
"Ahhhh!" we scream. "That's us."
"He kinda-sorta mentioned us. We're famous!"
"Ahhhh!"
"Shhh, let's hear him say it."
"And your number one song for tonight's Top Ten at Ten is Bryan Adams 'Everything I do (I do it for you)."
"Ahhhhh!"
Thanks Dan Foresta. You're the best-ah!

1 comment:

Tamatha said...

There it is...a jeffnamyni story! Love them! Love you!