I found out today that it was Shel Silverstein who had ruined my life.
Dig this, my cats and kittens: you are a small child. Adults keep coming up to you, bending over but looming large like Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade Balloons and grinning oddly as they ask, over and over, the same demented question: "Are you a boy named Sue? How do you do?"
Your young brain can't process it. You KNOW you aren't a boy. You don't LOOK like a boy. Sue is not a boy's name. And yet, the question comes again and again. What the everloving hell is going on with these large, apparently incredibly stupid people?
In case you are not aged and decrepit, let me present Mr. Johnny Cash:
Since my family rarely played music in the house, I hadn't heard the song. I didn't know what the adults were asking me or how to respond. I'm pretty sure that "A Boy Named Sue" is what has given me the lifelong feeling that most adults have something seriously wrong with their heads.
(See also: unmarried, loves dogs and cats).
Today I found out that, while the song's popularity may be the fault of the talented Mr. Cash, the lyrics were by Shel Silverstein, he of "The Giving Tree," which, in my mind, is one of the most messed-up books ever written and certainly not suitable for children.
I GUESS "The Giving Tree" is supposed to be a tender exploration of motherhood and how parents sacrifice everything for their ungrateful bastard children. It always seemed pretty dang creepy to me, though. Can't the tree survive and grow a little taller and prouder and have the child come back for weekends and holidays?
But no. Instead, we have "The Giving Stump." That tells me a lot about how Shel Silverstein's mind worked, and so does "A Boy Named Sue." I wish he would have just gotten an office job and a blog, instead.