Okay, true confessions time: I showed my 14 year-old son Lady Gaga's "Telephone" video.
No, it wasn't a mistake and yes, I'd do it again. You might be asking, "Who is Lady Gaga?" Or maybe you're shaking your head and tut-tutting to yourself, "What in the world was she thinking?"
First, I should point out that nearly every teenager in this country has heard of Lady Gaga. Yes, even yours. Even if you tell me that your homeschooled daughter rarely leaves the pristine confines of your 500-acre ranch in Wyoming, I'll still insist that I'm right.
Blame it on the People magazine sitting on the empty chair at the dentist's office, or even blame the little screens above the check-out counter or gas pump whose job it is to keep us distracted, sell us things, and feed our culture's desperate, insatiable hunger for celebrity gossip.
You could even blame Time magazine for exposing your child to Lady Gaga. Just a few weeks ago, the magazine named her one of the 100 most influential people in the world. Why did they honor her that way, this singer with the bizarre fashion sense and lyrics that include "Don't be dirty ice cream, baby" and lots of "rah-rah-ah-ah-ah"s and "GaGa, ooh la la"s?
(It may have something to do with the 15 million albums and 40 million singles she's sold. Just one week after her latest video, Alejandro, was posted on YouTube, it had already been watched 20 million times.)
My point is that she's a huge presence in popular culture right now and had I not showed my son "Telephone," he likely would have seen it at a friend's house or while flipping through the cable channels at his grandparents' house, sooner or later.
You're probably wondering what this big lead up is all about. How bad could it be? Well, "Telephone" ...1
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