“Ooh Child” by the Five Stairsteps Was an Absolute Lie. And other stories.

Unless, of course, what the author meant with that song is: life doesn’t get easier. You just get better at handling the absolute hell of it. 

That’s TOTALLY what they meant. It has to be, right? 

I can’t figure out why, but I feel less prepared now to handle just about everything than I felt ten years ago. 

Maybe it’s Time. Maybe it’s a few things acting all together at once. You know, like a perfect storm? Late thirties, early forties should be called Hell on Wheels and Life’s Perfect Crap-Storm. 

At the age I am now, I fully expected to have a decent grasp on everything that mattered. Instead, I feel frayed and shredded by life. 

Life, they say, is a paper shredder and we are the vessel that passes through it. 

They don’t say that, but they should. 

I keep thinking about “Oooo Child” and singing it as I manage all the storms life is throwing at me. I am more unsettled internally than I have ever been in all my life. And I had some trauma as a kid. I mean, who didn’t? 

I would think that childhood shit would have set me up to laugh in the face of my mom’s burgeoning dementia, the impending doomsday scenarios the world keeps SHOVING down my throat (the corals are bleaching, fires in Australia!, penguins are murdering each other, doom, doom, doom!), and my own approaching obsolescence just hanging out there on the horizon of my future, threatening me with a smarmy grin on its face (that JERK!). 

But no. 

Instead, I’m feeling like filing a lawsuit against the Five Stairsteps and suing their asses off for writing that song and poisoning the public with its happy message of patience and confidence for what the future will bring. 


Honestly, the poison they’ve filled me with is so bad that when my own kids are feeling like life is unjust and why aren’t they free to eat cereal and Top Ramen for EVERY meal, I want to break into song to them, “Ooooh child, things are gonna get easier…”

Why does mom force healthy meals full of vegetables and love on them every damn day? “Oooh child things will get brighter…”

Why must we go to tumbling? Why do you force us into that torture chamber known politely as “public school?”

“Someday, yeah, we’ll put it together and we’ll get it all done. Someday when your head is much lighter. Someday we’ll walk in the rays of a beautiful sun! Someday when the world is much brighter!”

That’s what I want to do, just sing those lines to them.

But it’s lies. That’s all. I just, at this point, I see it all as a disservice.

Instead, when my kids complain, I should play Beethoven’s Moonlight Sonata for them, and let them explore the doom that modern life actually consists of.

Because it ISN’T going to get better. It’s going to get worse. And won’t Moonlight Sonata will just facilitate the pensive, moodiness that realizations like that require? 

Can I always just blame The Crud? Even when it ends? 

I think that’s fair. Much like Millie Vanilli’s old advice, to blame it on the rain, I will blame it on The Crud (remember Milli? They were ROBBED!), and other environmental events unrelated to my actual state of mind and personal issues.

So there we go–I will blame it on a phase, and on The Crud, and NOT file a suit against the Five Stairsteps. They’ve been saved! They have no idea how close they came to my dangerous machinations…. bahahaha!

I mean, I think their song was right, right? Ok, so I’ve talked myself out of that frivolous lawsuit. I think the issue really is that everything is a phase and if you can just get out of this one phase that’s plaguing you, you’ll eventually escape all the phases right up until they put you in the ground and bam! You’re done! And wasn’t that easy? Ha ha, good job, old chap! 

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