Friday, March 03, 2006

Little boxes made of ticky-tacky

There is this song called "Little boxes", written and sung by Malvina Reynolds in the 1960s, which I heard today for the first time, thanks to my friend Neville. At first, it sounds innocent, almost childish, but its not. It's more in the mould of "The Little Prince" with simple, catchy lines that have a nursery rhyme-like quality that will linger in your mind for a little while, but if connect to the soul of the song, it will stay with you for a very long time indeed.

Little boxes on the hillside,
Little boxes made of ticky tacky
Little boxes on the hillside,
Little boxes all the same,
There's a green one and a pink one
And a blue one and a yellow one
And they're all made out of ticky tacky
And they all look just the same.

And the people in the houses
All went to the university
Where they were put in boxes
And they came out all the same
And there's doctors and lawyers
And business executives
And they're all made out of ticky tacky
And they all look just the same.

And they all play on the golf course
And drink their martinis dry
And they all have pretty children
And the children go to school,
And the children go to summer camp
And then to the university
Where they are put in boxes
And they come out all the same.

And the boys go into business
And marry and raise a family
In boxes made of ticky tacky
And they all look just the same,
There's a green one and a pink one
And a blue one and a yellow one
And they're all made out of ticky tacky
And they all look just the same.

And do listen to the song and you'll probably appreciate exactly what I mean.

2 Comments:

Blogger apu said...

The song really catches the spirit of the 60s...who has the time for rebellion these days...w're soooooo busy wih our ticky-tackies :)

Sunday, March 05, 2006 8:53:00 PM  
Blogger Srihari said...

Yes, it does. I feel that the song is also calling for a second look at being blindly conformist, and exhorting people to open up a lot of things in their lives. The roots of the song are in the 60s, but I personally feel that in today's world, we find so many boxes that we get in and get out of, without any sensible volition.

Monday, March 06, 2006 8:25:00 PM  

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