It is getting crowded in our car, which seats four comfortably, five at a stretch. The children’s tunes on our CD player that I actually enjoy (see Ralph’s World, Laurie Birkener, Two of a Kind) have recently been replaced by the tweenie (rhymes with weenie) sounds of Taylor Swift, Carly Rae Jepson, Justin Bieber, Fun. and and they fill all the available vehicle space. Their latest hits are played with remarkably frequency on the oh-so-commercial radio station my kids have decided shall be the soundtrack of our road trips and drives about town.
Today we were treated yet again to Mei’s favorite, Taylor Swift’s breakaway hit “We Will Never Ever (with echo: Ever, Ever, Ever) Getting Back Together”. “What part of this song do you like best?” I asked Mei, attempting to understand the attraction of a breakup song to my six year old. She threw back her head , replying, “The NEVER, EVER, EVER, EVER, EVER part,” at the top of her lungs.
This makes some sense. Mei is not one of those kids who went through a “no” phase, like some do when the response to every question is “no”. What she did go through, and has yet to emerge from, is a “never” phase. It still takes me aback.
I say, “Mei, its time to wash your hand before dinner”. “NEVER!” she roars, like an inflamed Patrick Henry preferring death over defeat.
“Mei, did you brush your teeth?” “NEVER!” she declares, with Che Guevara-like revolutionary fervor.
So Taylor’s pronouncement that she is never, ever, ever, ever getting back together fits right into Mei’s lexicon.
Fortunately, Mei’s nevermore is often tempered by the fact that she’s already completed said action or is on her way to do it. It’s more style than substance. More façade than fact. Which is a relief to this Mom who would never ever, ever, ever have the patience for that kind of resistance.