Saturday, January 17, 2009

ABBA Redux

I am loathe to revisit ABBA. Somewhere, and I am unable to verify this, I read that record numbers of people received the Momma Mia! DVD for Christmas this year. As delightful as the movie is, I want, more than anything, to stop humming the songs all the time. ABBA, as a concept, has resulted in some pretty good chuckles recently. These I will share with you.

First, I have to explain that in 1977, I was an AFS exchange student to Australia. That summer I remember being forced to listen to a lot of ABBA, which I, in my 17-year-old American snugness, was already way past (this was all long before Muriel's Wedding made ABBA cool again for me).

I was seriously into Wings that summer, and, in fact, could not believe that my mother refused to mail me my copy of Wings Over America while I was Down Under for two months. The nerve of her. How unreasonable. I also recall humming a lot of Leo Sayer (specifically "When I Need You").

My point is, I was living squarely in my glass house. Rolling my eyes whenever my Australian classmates put on an ABBA song. I distinctly remember a much younger girl telling me how she was so moved that ABBA had vowed always and forever to record "only in Australian." Oh, she was going to be a fan for life because of that.

I think I managed not to snort in disbelief while in front of her. I mean, she was sweet and oh, so sincere.

Fast forward to Christmas 2008.

The Spouse and the kids are watching Momma Mia! with the subtitles on.

"This is wrong!" The Spouse says, incredulous. "They have the subtitles wrong on 'Dancing Queen'."

He reports that the DVD says

You can dance, you can jive, having the time of your life
See that girl, watch that scene, dig in, the Dancing Queen

Dig in? Dig in? I always thought it was "Dig it! The Dancing Queen." (And I support my position that others heard it this way because when my girlfriend who hosted the Christmas Eve party sent me photos of us singing, she titled the email "Dig it, the Dancing Queens.")

No, no, no, says The Spouse. It's "Diggin' the Dancing Queen."

Much arguing ensued. I mean arguing of a "I don't think I can stay married to this asshole another moment" caliber. Followed by much googling.

Sure enough. Every source I find says "dig in."

7 comments:

Jen said...

Well! I have always thought it was "Dig it" and even smiled indulgently at its tweeness.
Then again, I am Australian.

sandy said...

I could have sworn it was 'dig it'. I like 'dig it' better.

Australia with ABBA... I thought you might mention Muriel's Wedding... =)

kate said...

Just found your blog! I'm an ex-pat in St. P...and can sooo identify with the mud and the public poopage. Also love when noses are blown by closing one nostril and just shooting it onto the sidewalk. Nice.

My lyric vote is "Diggin'". But, I say sing what you want to sing! Since when are translations reliable?

The Expatresse said...

Sandy: I can't believe I forgot about Muriel's Wedding! (Porpoise Spit, wasn't it?) I made a slight edit to the post as a result.

Kate: Nice to meet you, if only virtually. I think I can do en entire entry on the One-Finger-Nose-Blow. Saw a guy empty his sinuses on the rubber door mat just outside the grocery store yesterday. Yuck!

valentina said...

According to most Google sources it's "Diggin' the Dancing Queen."

But who cares...I have yet to see the movie! Must add it to my Netflix list but I keep forgetting.

The song that stays with me is Fernando because I sing it to my cat Orlando, putting in his name..
xov

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