That's Coldplay's video for Strawberry Swing. Yes, it's super creative and original and Chris whatshisface is super cool and "dreamy" and Gwyneth Paltrow appears to be some sort of super entitled egomaniacal nutjob and blah blah blah. But I don't want to talk about any of that! In fact, don't even watch the video! Or open another window on Gwyneth's "Goop" website to experience her nutjobbidity! (And no I am not going to link to Goop, I am sure you can figure out how to get there.) Just listen to the song1
This song has to be the most nostalgia inducing song I have ever heard. Even more than "Cat's in the Cradle"! The Ugly Kid Joe version! Or "Night Moves" by Bob Seger. Which song I actually don't find nostalgia-inducing at all, because its about how Bob's high school experience was all about driving around in his car and having sex with women, while JJ's high school experience involved pretty much all walking and awkward-soul-crushing-if a third party were to observe they would cringe-interaction with the opposite sex.
Oh, but this song! Takes me right back to childhood! Time spent with family! And what in particular? Well, surprise surprise, something to do with strawberries. Although not swings.
You ever go to one of these pick your own berry places? I haven't in years. But when I was a young pup, My parents would gather the three of us up and head...North?...Maybe?...No idea, really. Somewhere outside the city, anyways.
Get to work!
It's a bit funny. Fruit picking is seen as such a crappy job that they have to import migrant workers to do it, because people already living in Canada are like "uhhhh, no way".
But if you want, you can have the privilege of picking the fruit yourself. For a fee! It's very Toy Story 3. At least according to JJ. Which is not to say that it's not fun! I was a willing (somewhat anyways -"can't I stay home and play Atari (Pitfall!! Frogger!!)?") participant.
The one time in particular that I always think about when "Strawberry Swing" comes on? We were all there working along the same row, with my brother and sister and I working a little bit ahead of my dad. My dad's method of strawberry picking was to sit on the ground with his back to us, and then lean over to pick the berries. When he was finished with one strawberry bush, he would put his hands on the ground, elevate his butt, and push himself backward to the next bush (yes, yes, that's what she said, ha ha), then sit back down.
Now, when we were kids, my siblings and I kinda gave my dad a hard time. Not my mom, you didn't mess with that. But my dad, seemed like open season. Could get mad, but not MAD. Like I would be with my dad and brother watching hockey in our tv room. (The "den" it was called. On one wall, that wallpaper that shows a forest path in autumn , a couch my dad made out a door (was around forever so never questioned it, but a couch made out of a door!) and one of those big old timey stereo cabinets. Ahhh, the den. How many times did I hear "the plane boss! The plane!" or "whatchoo talkin' bout, Willis?" in that room? A lot!) Whenever my bro and I watched hockey with my dad, most times my dad would fall asleep before the end of the game. So we would do things like put an ice cube on his head and wait for it to melt. Then the hilarity would begin!
I don't know if I was ever necessarily the instigator in these shenanigans, being the youngest. But I was definitely a willing participant. This particular strawberry picking time? One of us cottoned on to the fact that, as my dad was moving backward, he wasn't really looking at what was behind him. So somebody took a strawberry, and dropped it in his path. We watched in anticipation....hands down, butt up, move, butt down (closer!!!!) hands down, butt up, move, butt down (closer!!!) Hands down, butt up, move, butt down (yes!!! Direct hit!!!). So funny. How clever we were! And he didn't notice!!!!
Well, one worked, how about another? And another? Squash. Squash. Squash. The best!!! I think he finally figured out what was going on when one of us tried to drop one directly down his shorts. He looked at us killing ourselves laughing, stood up and looked at his completely strawberry-juice soaked butt. He didn't see the hilarity as we did.
In fact, he was pissed. Broke out the blue language, even. "Ahhhh, goddammit..." I think he may have called us "shits". Driving all the way back to Winnipeg with a sticky wet butt did not help his mood. My mom was pissed at us too (worse, even...disappointed!). I don't remember us feeling too bad about it, though. It was just too funny to the young mind, I guess.
Heartwarming story, no? Yeah, maybe not so much. But what can I say? It still gets me feeling all warm and tingly inside!
...it was such a perfect day...it was such a perfect day...