Song Of The Day 1/17/2015: Larry Storch - "The Eighth Wonder of the World"

I take great pride in never needing to have musical things explained to me. That's because I have all the answers to anything about music ever. "What's 'the pompatus of love' from 'The Joker' by Steve Miller?" It's a foot doctor. "Who is Carly Simon's 'You're So Vain' about?" Jimmy Durante. "Were the Playboys in Gary Lewis & the Playboys officially sanctioned by Hugh Hefner?" No, they were plants by the Russians. "Aaaaah, what the hell was THAT?" Take it easy, Fido, it's just the end of "A Day in the Life." I'm filthy with music trivia.

Today's entry has me stymied, though. It's a jam by Larry Storch, who played Corporal Randolph Agarn on the '60s TV comedy F Troop, which was about the strained relations between American soldiers and Native Americans in the old West. "The Eighth Wonder of the World" is from 1958, well before F Troop hit the airwaves. At that time Storch was a comedian reared in New York City who performed in a lot of different accents, which sort of explains why he barrels through this song in a British accent.

The gag, which I'm sure you'll get instantly, is described in an issue of Billboard: "Various sound effects are used to help describe a 'chick’s' physical attributes." That's sort of true. It's actually the same set of sound effects for every event; sounds to me like an off-key brass instrument and a ratchet. And it doesn't just replace the attributes of the woman in question: It also replaces whatever it is she does with said attributes. It's both the noun and the verb, in other words.

Innuendo being what it is, of course, we're to assume that the words being censored are salacious, "naughty" words, ones that I gleefully use all the time here. If so, though, why are they using sound effects that usually accompany stupid clowns falling off bicycles with outsized wheels to describe them?

It would be understandable if they just censored the nouns, but it's their doing so to the verbs that ultimately trips me up. "When she (honk) with her (honk)." Assuming that whatever she's doing in done in public (how else would a gang full of guys be enthralled by her performance?) (don't answer that) there are a very limited number of activities that she would be doing, even in the shattered landscape of postwar England where, presumably, anything goes. You'd still have to deal with the church. That's never easy.

So, yeah, this is what I spend time wondering about, which among other reasons is why I haven't been promoted to CEO yet.

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