More parody songs like my gramma used to sing.

Only when I was 5, I didn’t know they were parody songs. Like
I hate Bosco, it’s full of DDT
My mommy put it in my milk to try to poison me
But I fooled mommy and put it in her tea
And now there’s no more mommy
To try to poison me!

Apparently there’s a commercial that belongs to that song. I don’t remember it.
My gramma also used to sing On Top of Spaghetti which started like this:
On top of spaghetti all covered with cheese
I lost my poor meatball when somebody sneezed.
It rolled off the table and onto the floor
and then my poor meatball rolled out of the door.

I didn’t learn On Top of Ole Smokey until I was in middle school. And then I promptly forgot the real words and only remember the parody my gramma taught me. Kinda like I can’t sing Our love’s in jeopardy. . ., it’s always comes out I lost on jeopardy. . .
Have parody songs usurped real songs in your head? Or is my mind twisted.
::goes off singing Hold me closer Tony Danza. . .

My mother taught me this song too, but the first line was different (Bosco was “rich in…” something; I don’t remember what, but it wasn’t DDT). I didn’t run into the real Bosco jingle until much later in life.

I usually find that parody versions of songs and poems stick with me at least as well as the real versions, if not better. When I hear the non-parody, the parody tends to run alongside it in my mind and it’ll come out if I don’t take care to keep my mouth shut.

Mad Magazine spoiled a couple of songs for me. I can’t ever hear “You’re a Grand Old Flag” without singing to myself:

You’re a fat old hag,
You’re an unsightly bag,
But you’re still my true love, EmmyLou…

And Moon River to me sounds like:

Chopped liver, onions on the side
My social life has died
From you.
My friends shun me,
They outrun me
The smell of my breath is slow death,
Sad but true…

I could go on, but I won’t. :smiley:

I cannot hear “The Stars and Stripes Forever” without thinking of these lyrics:

Be kind to your web-footed friends,
For a duck may be somebody’s mother.
Be kind to your friends in the swamp
Where the weather is cold and damp…

Well, that one’s a Weird Al Yankovic version. :slight_smile:

To the tune of the Star Spangled Banner:

*Oh say can you see
Any bedbugs on me?
If you do, pick a few, and I’ll fry them for you
If you happen to throw up,
I will lend you a cup
Drink it down, do not frown, for it’s nourishing toooo

Oh say do the bedbugs, e-e-ever yet roam
O’er the land of the free, and the beds of our home? *

When I was 9, I wrote this parody of the old Spider-Man cartoon theme song, in which I imagine the show is about Iron Man instead:

Iron Man, Iron Man
Does whatever an iron can
Steams a cloth any size
Presses pants, shirts and ties
Watch out - here comes the Iron Man

Jingle bells
Batman smells
Robin laid an egg
The batmobile
Lost a wheel
The Joker got away - hey

I heard the Dr. Demento show (don’t recall the artist, sorry) song “Squirrels” before I ever heard the Beastie Boys’ “Girls.” Now whenever I happen to hear the real song, I expect the parody instead, and end up singing the parody lyrics along with it.

“Squirrels! That’s all we really are is - Squirrels! We’re cute and cuddly, we are squirrels!..”

The basketball player who sat behind me in high school used to sing this little ditty to “Ironman”
I am garbageman
Coming here to get your garbage can
Is it full of slime?
Gonna have to use my gloves this time!

We three kings of Orient are
Trying to smoke a rubber cigar.
It was loaded
And explo-oh-ded.
Now we’re on yonder star.

Glory, glory, hallelujah.
Teacher hit me with a ruler.
I conked her in the bean
With a rotten tangerine.
Us brats go marching on.

The next one is to the tune of a military song, the name of which I cannot bring to mind. Anyone?
Comet will get your kitchen clean.
Comet is made of kerosene.
Comet will make you vomit.
So get some comet
And vomit

Like Archergirl, I have many of the Mad Magazine parodies burned permanently into my brain. What school song was ever as rousing as this one (to the tune of “On Wisconsin”)?
On brave Pivnik, on brave Pivnik.
Show them we’ve got spunk.
Suffocate them, decimate them,
Leave them all for junk. Rah rah rah.
Send the roar up,
Roll the score up,
Stomp them into mud.
Then clean up the mess
With their own blood.

Other verses feature

“Met her at the door/ with a loaded .44/ And she don’t teach no more”


“Hit her in the ass/ With a broken piece of glass/ Our kids are marching on”

According to this page (scroll down to Cat Heads entry) it’s the “Colonel Bogey March” from The Bridge on the River Kwai.

I’m another veteran Mad reader – here’s one of my memories:

I’ve got to stop smoking
My doctor has said
Or else when I’m seven
I’m sure to be dead

(as is “On Top of Spaghetti”, this one is a takeoff of “On Top of Old Smokey”)

I’m Popeye the sailor man,
I live in a garbage can.
I eat all the worms
And spit out the germs.
I’m Popeye the sailor man.

'Course, that’s not a true parody, it’s just childish foolishness.

Parody is when the luteist is playing Greensleeves and you start singing:

What child is this
who laid to rest
in Mary’s lap is sleeping?


Who needs words?

My father was a Spike Jones enthusiast, so the very first versions I ever heard of such songs as “Begin the Beguine” and “That Old Black Magic” and “Holiday for Strings” were–well, warped.

“When they begin [hoot, honk, whiffle, cuckoo!_ the beguine . . . .”

The lyrics to “Holiday for Strings” (which doesn’t actually have lyrics) were:

“Ha ha ha ha
ha ha ha-ha,
hee hee hee hee,
who who who-ha,
ho ho ho ho ha ha ha ha”==

sorry. I can’t go on.

Of course you realize that at the time I didn’t KNOW they were warped.

You would all enjoy the following book, Greasy Grimy Gopher Guts-the subversive folklore of childhood, by Josepha Sherman. In it are many of the childhood rhymes and parodies mentioned above, and their variations by time and location.

I knew it as
Comet will make your teeth turn green.
Comet, it tastes like gasoline.

Another one from Mad Magazine (to the tune of "On the Street Where You Live) (you have to be old enough to remember that Raleigh cigarettes used to come with coupons):

*We have never owned a stuffed moose before.
For a stuffed moose we just never had no use before.
Now we’ve thirty-three, Raleigh sent them free.
We just love all those gifts that they give.

People stop and stare at our landing strip.
It took thirty million coupons to gain ownership.
Raleigh sent it free, with a warranty.
We just love all those gifts that they give.*

Alas, my love, you do me dirt,
You put green sleeves on my yellow shirt.

Here’s a Christmas parody that would probably get you expelled or at least suspended from a zero-tolerance school:

Deck the halls with gasoline
Fa la la la la, la la la la
Strike a match and watch it gleam
Fa la la la la, la la la la
Watch the school burn down to ashes
Fa la la la la, la la la la
Aren’t you glad you play with matches?
Fa la la la la, la la la la