Thursday, June 11, 2009

Shake it Like a Salt Shaker

I heard the title line of this blog on the radio today. Totally cracked me up. Shake it like a salt shaker. I assume the antecedent to the rather vague pronoun "it" is your body...your booty...your head. The singer was never really clear on that. Whatever "it" is, take your pick, imagine shaking it like a salt shaker. No really...picture yourself salting your french fries, your mashed potatoes, whatever it is you the mental image in your head? Now select an "it" and picture yourself shaking it like that salt shaker. LOL. That comparison just doesn't work for me, but that's okay. The singer of the song LOVED it. He must have. He repeated it over and over and over.

Writing tip of the day: When using figurative language, make sure your similes and metaphors are painting the image you want your readers to see.

The salt shaker simile did have me listening to the rest of the lyrics. Turns out the song is a list of instructions from the patron of a strip club to the employees. Maybe those gals can shake "it" like a salt shaker. I was mildly scandalized by the graphic nature of the song, but it didn't last long. A lot of song lyrics are pretty scandalous these days, and the mom in me sometimes cringes when I hear what's on my boys' ipods. The writer in me is often amused, and occasionally inspired. The lyrics of a rap song inspired the opening scene of my WIP.

I've listened to some of my friends bemoan the state of modern music, and I guess that's a bellwether gripe separating generations. Sitting with Bruce and one of our friends, we were able to come up with a whole list of songs from the 80's with questionable lyrics. "Pour some Sugar on Me," "My Angel is a Centerfold," "Stroke Me," anything by Ted Nugent, "She's My Cherry Pie," "Pearl Necklace." I could go on and on.

Kids (and adults) will always listen to songs about sex, so singers and songwriters will keep cranking them out. I write romance novels, so I'm certainly not throwing stones. I'm listening and laughing...and double-checking my similes.


  1. Yeah....but the 80's songs are SOOOOO much better :D

  2. I miss the Beach Boys...

    But are you sure the song wasn't Shake it Like a Polariod Picture? That's one I've heard. Salt shaker is new.

  3. you craxk me up! and by the way, the Vertigo... is it gone???

  4. I agree with Marybeth - the 80's are so much better. Slow Hand by the Pointer Sisters is one of the sexiest songs I've ever heard.


  5. Someday my kids will be sitting around saying, "The rap songs were sooo much better in the 00's." LOL. I love the 80's too!

    And thanks, Angee. The vertigo is gone!

  6. Uh...look up the misogynist lyrics and you won't be "LOL" or wondering about the antecedent to the rather vaugue pronoun. I'm hoping desperately that you are trying to be ironic here. If so, your blog is a work of genius.

    And yes, it's a great song. And yes, this is exactly what's wrong with our culture. And yes, I know that you can't start a sentence with "And". But I did, and apparently it's also OK to say disturbing things if the beat is good.

  7. Still don't get it? Watch this rendition of the song and tell me the culture is alive and well:

  8. Anon --

    Thanks for the comment. As I was composing a response, I realized this topic deserved its own post, so I'm working on a new entry which I hope to have up later this evening.