Like Wow – Wipeout!


I was so excited.

I’d been kicking impatiently at the ground and shuffling through the aisles of a huge op shop on the Sunshine Coast while my wife looked for photography props.

I used to love op shopping when I was in my late teens and twenties. But my logic these days is I’m better off paying $10 at a cheap t-shirt shop I really like than $2 for a secondhand shirt I really don’t.

And since I started reading e-books op shops have completely lost their charm.

Or so I thought.

I’d just passed the record selection: a wet dream for lovers of Nana Mouskouri, Irish folk singers and bagpipe marching bands.

And then my mood changed.

I’d come across a CD which took me back to my hey day in the late eighties – Mars Needs Guitars by the Hoodoo Gurus. I can still remember when a mate played this to me for the first time. It was in his soon to be super expensive classic FJ Holden (side note – what a first car!). The drums, the rhythms, the groove. I was hooked. To this day it irks me I’ve never seen them live.

I paid my $1 to the nice lady at the counter.

“Did you buy something?” Tracey asked me.

I nodded. I didn’t trust myself to speak.

Back at the car I ejected the So Fresh CD which had been slowly eating away at my soul and inserted a music education into the slot. I was grinning. Things were about to get awesome!

“I don’t like it,” said Miss5 before we were three bars into Bittersweet.

“Give it a chance,” I told her.

“Is this country music?” asked Master10.

“It’s not country,” I assured him. “It’s….” What is it? “It’s groovy and hip and funky and melodic.”

“It sounds like country.”

“It’s not country!”

I skipped forward to Death Defying, but even without looking behind me I knew the ewwweeeies weren’t helping. I skipped to the next track.

“You’ll recognize this one,” I said as Like Wow – Wipeout! started and my head began to bob on my neck without any conscious instructions from me.

“I don’t,” said Miss8. “Do they have any good songs?”

“They play this song at every school disco,” I told my kids. “Every. Single. One.”

To their credit the kids listened as we hit the chorus, which I sang loudly.

“Nope,” said Master10. “Never heard it.”

“You know,” said Miss11. “it’s not the nineties anymore, Dad.”

Everyone laughed. Not least my wife, who’d been sitting quietly beside me offering support by way of chuckling into the passenger window and trying not to make eye contact with anyone.

“You’ve got to hand it to her,” said Tracey. “She got you there. She’s got a good sense of humour.”

“Thanks,” said Miss11. And then, to sink the boot in she added, “I get it off my Mum.”

Not to be outdone, Master10 chipped in with, “If you’re lucky you’ll get her taste in music too.”

So anyway, long story short, I’m back to not wanting to go op shopping.

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“Raising a family on little more than laughs”

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