Thursday, May 19, 2011

Pick up lines and Bugs

Normally little creepy crawlies would give most women the heebie jeebies.  But that doesn't scare the men folk away from using them in sexual innuendos (or sexual in the windows, as my roommates and I used to say).  Today when I was driving home from work, Brad Paisley's song, "Ticks," came on the radio.  If you haven't heard it before, I've placed it below for your listening pleasure (complete with lyrics!)



This song always gives me a laugh, because let's be honest, this is the best pick-up line in the world. It gets me every time.

What's really funny is everytime I hear this song I think of John Donne.  John was a ladies man back in the 17th century, and wrote some pretty racy love poems.  But also some pretty funny ones.  One of my favorites that we studied in class was called, "The Flea."


THE FLEA.
by John Donne



MARK but this flea, and mark in this,
How little that which thou deniest me is ;
It suck'd me first, and now sucks thee,
And in this flea our two bloods mingled be.
Thou know'st that this cannot be said
A sin, nor shame, nor loss of maidenhead ;
    Yet this enjoys before it woo,
    And pamper'd swells with one blood made of two ;
    And this, alas ! is more than we would do.

O stay, three lives in one flea spare,
Where we almost, yea, more than married are.
This flea is you and I, and this
Our marriage bed, and marriage temple is.
Though parents grudge, and you, we're met,
And cloister'd in these living walls of jet.
    Though use make you apt to kill me,
    Let not to that self-murder added be,
    And sacrilege, three sins in killing three.

Cruel and sudden, hast thou since
Purpled thy nail in blood of innocence?
Wherein could this flea guilty be,
Except in that drop which it suck'd from thee?
Yet thou triumph'st, and say'st that thou
Find'st not thyself nor me the weaker now.
'Tis true ; then learn how false fears be ;
Just so much honour, when thou yield'st to me,
Will waste, as this flea's death took life from thee.


A little explanation might be in order.  Here's the story: John is flirting with his lady, when all of a sudden she finds a flea on herself (pretty common back then I guess, since he's not weirded out).  She's about to smash it, but he exclaims out not to.  That kind of catches her interest, because why wouldn't you kill a nasty little bloodsucking flea?  John then goes on to say that since this flea has sucked from both of them, their blood has mixed and it's similar to a physical union between the two of them, and it's just not fair that flea gets to have all the fun.  Poor John, it just breaks his heart their union took place in the flea, and not in reality.  She must have thought that was pretty funny, because he continues to elaborate on the metaphor, calling the flea the emblem of their union, their marriage bed, etc., and that smashing it would be a sin times three, because she's killing the two of them as well.  Finally she gets sick of the nonsense and smashes it, albeit in a saucy and flirtatious manner.  John pretends to be all torn up about it, and then says, "Whatevs, baby girl, I know you want me."

So there you go.  Bugs.  Men have been using them in pick up lines for centuries, and they're just not stopping.