Your Name Here

I have a student who sings constantly. Raps, too. Under his breath, at the top of his lungs, while he works, in line, in the bathroom (you can hear him through the door!) All the time.

Names are relevant in this anecdote, so let’s refer to him as Cory. Mainly because in 6 years of teaching, I have never had a student named Cory. Huh. How bout that.

The other day I was listening to him sing quietly while he was playing with some of his friends during indoor recess. I suddenly realized he was singing “S&M” by Rihanna. Specifically the line “I may be bad but I’m perfectly good at it.” My brain filled in the next line- Sex in the air I don’t care I love the smell of it. In the time it took me to realize this, he had already sang the line.

However, there was one important substitution. He sang, “Cory in the air, I don’t care I love the smell of it.”

That’s right. He substituted his own name for the word sex. One of my girls leaned over to him and said conspiratorially, “That’s not actually what the line says you know.” He shrugged, and told her “When there’s a swear or an inappropriate word I use my name instead.”

Please take the time to imagine the wide assortment of pop songs currently out with mild profanity or sexual content. Now replace those words with “Cory” and imagine a sweet 10 year old boy singing them.

I’m listening so much closer to his singing now to try and find more examples.


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