Wednesday, May 28, 2008

You know it's "turbulence," right?

So, I love Prince. God help me, I do. And the final track on his great and glorious 1999 album is International Lover, which begins as a straightforward slow jam about picking some woman up in a bar (or someplace - I always assumed it was a bar but a quick review of the lyrics turns up no actual textual support for that interpretation) and then transitions into a spoken-word segment.

And oh, the spoken-word segment. By this point in the story he has clearly gotten her home and, one presumes, into the bedroom, where now he treats her to a riff on that safety drill the flight attendants go through on every airplane. Only he means it to be sexy. So he changes the words here and there and, in case she's still not getting the point, delivers the whole thing in his best seductive voice, complete with meaningful little pauses and aural italicizing of key phrases and so on:

"Good evening... [short sexy pause] This is your pilot, Prince, speaking... you are now flying aboard the Seduction seven-forty-seven... and this plane is fully equipped with everything [short sexy pause] your body desires..."

On it goes, through heavy-handed double-entendres about the tray tables and cabin pressure, until about halfway into it, he utters:

"We ask that you please observe the No Letting Go signs... [portentous sexy pause]... I'm expecting a few turbulents along the way..."

It's certainly not the only linguistic head-scratcher that's made it past some number of people who should have known better into print and wide distribution, but he delivers it with such conviction, such commitment to his sexy principles, that he almost convinces you it's a real word.

Too, he is Prince. So turbulents it is.

No comments: