Over the years I’ve heard the song In The Mood by Glenn Miller at least a few thousand times, but when it came on the radio today something occurred to me. Does anybody other than Glenn and maybe the rest of the orchestra actually know what he’s in the mood for? It’s kind of hard to tell since we don’t have any lyrics to work with. Sure we can go with the obvious and likely correct answer and say sex, but what if we’re wrong? You know what they say about assuming things, and if there’s one thing you’ll never catch me doing it’s making an ass out of myself.
“Oh Steve,” I hear you sigh. “It’s just a happy little song about sex or love or walks in the park or sunny days or maybe even fluffy kitty cats. Why can’t you just be happy and enjoy the music?”
“Well,” I hear me respond, “because I wanna know.”
Enjoying the music isn’t the issue. I love that song. I just want to know what it is I’m enjoying. Sure it might sound all happy and fun, but when you’ve been watching people for as long as I have, you tend to learn a few things. Chief among them is that things aren’t always as they appear. So what might sound like a walk in the park to you or I could be the musical equivalent of the feeling Glenn Miller gets after he’s just mugged an old woman or kicked a puppy down a flight of stairs. Call me crazy if you want, but who’s going to be laughing when you figure out that all these years you’ve been bouncing around to a song written by a guy who’s singing “baba daba daba, let’s torch a church” in his head every time he plays it? Me, that’s who. Me and perhaps Glenn Miller, wherever he is.