What In The World Is A Mondegreen?
I learned a new word today, which, I realize, doesn’t sound that exciting, as you would think that, as a writer, I would probably learn new words all the time, but this one in particular is kind of a big deal to me. You see, I’ve been searching for this word for years. I knew it had to exist, I just didn’t know what it was called, and while it’s quite easy to flip open a dictionary and look up the meaning of a word you’ve heard but don’t quite know how to use, it’s actually quite a challenge to look up a word when all you know is the definition of it. Try it sometime, and you’ll see what I mean. Anyway, the word in question is mondegreen. And a mondegreen, in case you were wondering, is a misheard song lyric, such as, excuse me, while I kiss this guy, instead of excuse me while I kiss the sky, or the girl with colitis goes by instead of the girl with kaleidoscope eyes.
My obsession with this word stems from my husband, Michael, who is the king of mondegreens. If you read Notes From the Underbelly, you may recall a scene where Andrew and Lara are in the car and Jack and Diane comes on the radio. Andrew turns to Lara, pretending to have a mic in his hand, and belts out the following: itty bitty, ‘bout Jack and Di-aane, which annoys Lara almost to the point of convulsion, and which, by the way, is a completely true story that I ripped off from my very own life. So when I discovered that the word for this is called mondegreen, it was just too perfect. I mean, they might as well have called it a michaelgreen. In fact, I’m considering just calling Michael Monty from now on, because then he would be Monty Green, which is actually a mondegreen in and of itself, and which just takes my cleverness to an entirely new level.
And speaking of Notes From the Underbelly, a lot of people have been asking me what the hell is going on with the tv show, to which I reply, I wish I knew. I won’t bore you with the minutiae that I’ve learned about network scheduling through this process, but the short answer is, we shot thirteen episodes, I think they’re pretty funny, and now we’re waiting for a time slot. Unfortunately, there isn’t anywhere on ABC’s schedule right now to put a female-oriented, single camera comedy (meaning, a comedy that doesn’t have a laugh track, and is shot like a movie. Think Sex and the City, as opposed to Friends, which was multi-camera). But the latest word is that it might be on in March, though they still have no idea where they’re going to put it, in which case, it could be April, or maybe May, or possibly next fall. And so there you have it. It’s a tough business, this tv stuff. As my husband, Monty, would say, it’s a doggy dog world.