He sho is hip, ain’t he?

alleyoop

I’ve been looking for a theme song for this blog for a long time when one came to me over the in-store music system.  I heard it when my eldest son and I were grabbing the fixings for dinner at a natural foods grocery in Dallas a few days ago.  As the infectious beat thumped down around me, I hustled to position myself under a speaker so I could hear better.  I listened and was taken back to what was probably my social awakening as a gawky, pimply teenager.

My father had been transferred to Detroit, Michigan when I was just starting junior high.  We drove from our home state of Missouri to Motor City, as it was later to be called.  Prior to this, I had grown up in small towns and had just been living with my parents, two brothers and two sisters in an old army barracks in Jefferson Barracks, MO, which was on the Mississippi River near St. Louis.   There were eight families living in each one of these barracks, and each living space had a living room, kitchen, two bedrooms and one bath.  Needless to say, the seven of us were in cramped quarters.

We moved to a blue-collar suburb of Detroit and I started junior high.  I met a girl in one of my classes who invited me to a party at her sister’s boyfriend’s house.  We went to this party – my very first teenage party experience – and I thought I had hit the big time.  My date and I were the youngest ones there – all the other kids were in high school.  I couldn’t believe that I – a real social neophyte – was there hanging out with actual high schoolers.  And not only hanging out with them, they acted like we were a part of their crowd.

The party was in the basement of the sister’s boyfriend’s house.  There was a record player and a load of 45 rpm records being played non stop.  Kids were dancing to the music in the soon-to-be old fashioned way during which one held on to one’s partner.  I danced with my date, and, in what I thought at the time to be the acme of social achievement, even danced with a high schooler or two.

Throughout the party all the kids kept asking this one guy to do his dance.  He kept saying, Later, later.  I asked my date what they were talking about, but she didn’t know.  As the party was drawing to an end, everyone started goading him to do his dance.  He finally relented and asked for the  record to be put on.  It was a song called Alley Oop by the Hollywood Argyles.  I had never heard it, which wasn’t unusual.  I was never one to listen to the radio and didn’t really care much (at that time) for music.  My family didn’t have a stereo system until I was a junior in high school, so I had no real way to listen to music unless I was riding in a car.  And if I was riding in a car, it was typically with my father, who listened to sports or sports talk radio.  So, not having the means at hand,  I had very little exposure to popular music.  Thus my having never heard Alley Oop, which was a hugely popular song at the time.

As the first beats of the song started, this guy, who kind of looked like a white rat with thick glasses, but who was obviously extremely popular, began to writhe to the music.  His dance became more and more chorioid as he jerked and twitched and twisted to the thumping bass of the song.  The rest of the kids were clapping to the beat as he danced and broke into loud applause when he finished.  And I, my young pubescent self, thought this was possibly the coolest thing I had ever had the good fortune to witness.  I immediately began imagining myself performing such a dance to adoring applause, but, sadly, thanks to my innate shyness such an event never took place.

The song has stuck with me since, although after it’s run of popularity, I don’t think I’ve heard it more than a half dozen times.  But one of the lines has become part of our family lingo.  At the end of the song, the singer says: “There he goes. …  He sho is hip, ain’t he?”  I was totally taken with that line and used it – and still use it – when I see someone whom I think dresses or acts outlandishly.  He sho is hip, ain’t he?  Said in the cadence of the singer.  It never occurs to me that others don’t know the line is an allusion to the song Alley Oop.

The song and the group have an interesting history that I never knew until I read about it before writing this post.  I had always assumed that the Hollywood Argyles were a real group.  But not so according to the Wikipedia entry and to the statement of the record’s producer.

Here is the song in case you haven’t heard it, or, as in my case, haven’t heard it in a long time.  It’s got a beat that inspires dancing as evidenced by the number of people who have put videos of themselves dancing to it on YouTube. Enjoy.

It would make a great theme song for this blog since it is about Paleolithic man (Alley Oop is a caveman), the Paleolithic diet (“He don’t eat nuthin but a bearcat stew…”), and the exuberance and surging energy that comes with a low-carb diet (“He rides through the jungle tearin’ limbs off of trees…”).  A perfect song given this blog’s theme.

What think you?

Please note: I reserve the right to delete comments that are offensive or off-topic.

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34 thoughts on “He sho is hip, ain’t he?

  1. I’ve got to change grocery stores. My store is usually playing some caterwauling from Whitney Houston.

    I see what you mean. Alley Oop is infinitely preferable.

  2. I turned thirteen in 1960 and remember that song well. The next year I got to see the Marcels do Blue Moon in a local gymnasium (Johnstown, PA). Do you remember their version of that song?

    Cast my vote for Alley Oop!

    Regards,
    Philip Thackray

    Sad to say, but I don’t even remember the Marcels.

  3. Ah, yes, I remember those basement parties well (we had them, too, and all of the requisite dancing. Good times!)…and the song, though it was released several years before my birth. I also remember it was about a caveman, and I think it would be the perfect theme song for your low carb blog.

    On a side note, I gifted my husband with a turntable for the holidays so we can listen once again to our record album and 45 collections that we’ve both kept from our youth. Yes, I have all of my favorite music in electronic form, but for me there is nothing quite so beautiful sounding as the clicks of scratches made by misuse and time. Thanks for the trip down memory lane. *smiles*

  4. I’ve tried twice to post to your last thread and been beaten back both times.

    By last thread do you mean the Tale of two studies post?

  5. Hello All. I’ve gotten several comments telling me of difficulties in having comments go through. I’ve disabled the Captcha plug in. Let’s see if that helps. I upgraded the WordPress software a couple of days ago, and I think my web guy went ahead and activated Captcha, which I had deactivated when this same problem arose before.

    Thanks for your continued support and interest. I hope this solves the problem.

    MRE

  6. Yep, perfect blog song.

    Don’t you just love songs that bring back the memories? Thanks for sharing your junior high reminiscences. It’s good to know I wasn’t the only shy one at that age.

    I’m still shy. Much though I love the song, you couldn’t pay me enough to get up and jerk and twitch to Alley Oop in front of a bunch of people.

  7. Wow, I haven’t heard “Alley Oop” in ages. Now I have it stuck in my head, thanks a lot.

    My local independent supermarket has some … very interesting choices in music. It plays the typical innocuous adult contemporary stuff but then it’ll put on something that will literally make me stop in my tracks and say “I can’t believe they’re playing this in a SUPERMARKET.” This includes Led Zeppelin’s “Kashmir,” Queen’s “Fat Bottomed Girls,” Rush’s “Distant Early Warning” and the one that really freaked me out, The Ramones’ “Rock and Roll High School.” This happens at least once on every visit. I was there on New Year’s Eve and it played Van Halen’s “Panama.” It makes grocery shopping a very surreal experience.

    Better that shopping be a surreal experience than the typical drag grocery shopping usually is.

  8. I’m a tad younger (54), but had a sister that was older, so I really remember all the songs from the 50s and early 60s. I loved this song…..but I think my childhood favorite was “Charlie Brown” http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Oxumz76eLP0&NR=1

    Alley Oop is great for this blog!

    I loved the Coasters. They were already on the oldies by the time I started listening to pop music, but I heard them often enough. My favorites were Along came Jones and Poison Ivy.

  9. Perfect. In fact, your very re-telling of the story had with it a great ‘Wonder Years’ esque narration. Cheers! :)

    Off topic – I’m watching an Obesity show on Discovery Health with Dr. Mehmet Oz. Yikes. I can never get over what an attention-whore he is. {sigh}

  10. Did you see the latest idiocy? http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,475136,00.html

    This “study” says that while a low-carb diet can improve people’s ability to focus and pay attention, “it may make people’s short-term memory a little foggy.” There’s a video to go along with the article.

    Here’s a brief excerpt:

    “Low-carb diets,” Taylor added, “in the initial time period when they’re actually no-carb diets, have the greatest potential to impair cognitive function because the brain uses glucose (sugar) as its primary fuel. The body breaks carbohydrates down into smaller components, including glucose, which the brain gets from the bloodstream, Taylor explained. So once carbohydrate stores are gone, the brain starts to starve.

    Yeah, right.

    This study from the journal Appetite is an attrocious piece of junk. I was going to post on it (and may still), but it was so awful that I figured why waste the time. Ignore everything in it.

  11. I’ve tried twice to post to your last thread and been beaten back both times.

    By last thread do you mean the Tale of two studies post?

    Yes it was a post to steve.

    Well my first and second posts disappeared so let’s try again.

    steve you said: I think it is between meals that makes low carb hard to follow. For us office workers, when you feel you want something to eat mid morning, or at 3/4pm what are the choices?

    I eat zero carb. Meat, fat, cheese, cream, butter, eggs, bacon, some salami occasionally. I do have coffee in the morning with 1/2 and 1/2 or full fat cream.

    I eat twice a day, 8-12 hours between meals. This way of eating has really changed my blood sugar levels. Before I was starving in 3 to 4 hours even on low carb. And then I would have the shakes, I was beyond irritable straight to manic, and unfocused.

    Two months ago I started zero carb and I have lost 12 pounds and my belly fat is finally disappearing. I have no food cravings anymore.

    So there is the post in all its glory. lol

    Happy New Year to you and your lovely bride.

    Thanks very much. Happy New Year back to you and yours.

  12. Alley ooop? Man, you older kids sure were boring! Rolling Stones, Led Zepplin, Leon Russel, Grand Funk, Allman Brothers, Mountain, Neil Young, etc. those guys were cool. Alley Oop? Thats just a corn-ball novelty tune, nowhere near cool!

    I was never too shy to dance like a fool to all the above and more, but I wouldn’t have been caught dead dancing to that alley ooop noise!

    Thumbs down!

    mrfreddy, mrfreddy, mrfreddy. Just because we don’t have the same rarefied musical tastes as you is no reason to deem our choice a corn-ball novelty tune. Alley Oop is serious music. The writer had no idea that subconsciously he was laying the foundation for the Paleolithic music revolution generations later. Listen again. There is deep, deep meaning in those lyrics, mrfreddy. Don’t be one of those who fails to understand.

  13. Awwww, now I want a theme song for my blog, too!

    This is my first time commenting here.

    I believe that low carbs are the best way to lose weight and be healthy, but I run out of good ideas for low carb meals. Where do you (or your wife?) get new low-carb ideas? My upbringing of always serving a grain with dinner, or serving a main dish with rice, pasta, etc., is too easy to fall back on when I get in a rut.

    Next week I’m hosting a carnival hoping everyone will share their low carb food/meal ideas, I need some new things to try, so that I can have more variety in my “what to make for dinner” arsenal and hopefully stick with it longer…indefinitely this time? http://kellythekitchenkop.com/2009/01/get-your-low-carb-ideas-ready-spread-the-word.html

    Kelly

    My wife, she from whom all recipes flow in our house, gets her ideas from all the regular food magazines and standard cookbooks. She finds a recipe that she thinks sounds good, and then she figures a way to use cauliflower, celeriac or spaghetti squash to pimp it low-carb.

    Drop me a comment when you get your carnival up, and I’ll post it for all to see and link to.

  14. Dr. Eades,

    I didn’t realize you were originally from the Midwest. Now I know why you have so much common sense. :-)

    You nailed the feelings of going to your first teenage dance party. (I think my first was also my last; I was very shy too.) The song I remember was “Beth” by Kiss, because it’s the one that got me a slow dance with the girl I had a crush on. Oh, to be young again and less shy and clueless.

    Yep, I’m from the Midwest. I grew up in a little town called Seymour, MO where my grandfather was superintendent of schools for about 40 years, then moved to Springfield, MO for a few years, then to Jefferson Barracks, MO for a couple of years, then to Michigan for a few more, then to Southern California when I was in high school. Went to college in So Cal then moved to Arkansas for an engineering job. Got tired of engineering and went to med school in Arkansas. Stayed in practice there for 15 years. Then moved our practice to Boulder, CO.

  15. Speaking of wikipedia entries, where’s yours and MD’s? You’ve certainly authored enough books and influenced the common understanding of nutrition enough to be considered a public figure. If you won’t do it yourself could you ask your kids to, please?

    I don’t have a clue as to what it takes to get a wikipedia entry. I don’t think our kids do, either. If someone wants to write one for us, go for it. Just don’t call us Atkins wannabes, Zone Clones or any of the other things we’ve been called in print.

  16. I subscribe to an internet feed that emails me links to new articles on insulin. It seems like every few days I get a raft or articles on this subject. A few weeks ago it was elevated insulin levels and prostate cancer. The past few days I have been receiving emails with links to a study released Tuesday in The Journal of the National Cancer Institute that found that women with higher insulin levels are nearly 50% more likely than those with low (insulin) levels to develop breast cancer.

    That study acknowledges that for years, doctors have focused on the role of estrogen, a female hormone, in breast cancer (i.e. ‘looking in the wrong place). Doctors now say this new study explains why obese women are at greater risk, even if their estrogen levels are the same as those in thinner women. Then of course the authors of the study go on to posit (wait for it) that a lack of ‘lots of vigorous exercise’ is the reason for the higher insulin levels in the obese women.

    It blows me away how medical professionals fall all over themselves finding new ways to prescribe drugs like statins based on irrational ‘preventative measure’ posturing yet are reluctant to order a simple test like fasting insulin let alone educate themselves on the problems associated with high carbohydrate diets.

    That federal food guides and RDs continue to promote low fat high carb diets in the face of accumulating evidence linking high insulin levels to cancers seems nothing short of criminal.

    I agree with your sentiment. But I read this paper when it came out last week, and it is an observational study, so it doesn’t really mean much of anything. Even the authors say that the data “suggest” (a weasel word for sure) a correlation.

  17. Dr. Eades, I will completely understand if you coose to ignore this off-topic comment, but I thought I would try asking anyway, since you are always so kind about answering questions. I am breastfeeding a three-week old, but I would like to go back to low-carbing. In my previous attempt at low-carbing (cut short by pregnancy) I followed your plan but began with an Atkins-style Induction phase because it worked so well to kill my sugar cravings. This time around, would it be “dangerous” for my newborn to do Induction while breastfeeding? Should I just start with 30 grams of carbs per day, as per Protein Power, and avoid ketosis? There is so much confusion on the low carb discussion boards about this, that I really wanted to get your opinion. Thank you!

    We recommend that our patients follow more of a maintenance plan than a weight reduction diet during the early phases of breast feeding. The issue of primary importance right now is supporting the growth and development and brain health of the new baby. We advise our patients to eat plenty of greens, colorful fruits and vegetables, meat, especially fatty meat and fish oil and/or krill oil supplementation. You need enough calories so that neither you nor the baby suffers. The two essential fats for a developing child are DHA and arachidonic acid, both of which the above recommendations supply in abundance. We tell our patients that if they avoid grains and starches in general and get their calories from the above mentioned foods, they will lose weight slowly while at the same time provide all the raw materials for their growing babies.

  18. And what about Motown… Wilson Picket, Sam and Dave. Talk about cool. I also loved the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin and Neil Young but have you seen them lately… definitely older kids now. I have to admit, the corniest I ever got was was ‘Hooked on a Feeling’ by BJ Thomas.

    Dr. Mike, I say thank God you were shy. if you were gawky as a teen you might have feeling like Robert Plant at the time but you know how it goes… the video shows up one day and you looked more like Napoleon Dynamite.

    My biggest objection to all this is hearing a song play every time I log on – not sure I would dig that. Is that your intention?

    For BJ Thomas fans out there: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_gy_ufiNCbU

    I was just sort of kidding about making Alley Oop the theme song for the blog. If I did do so, it would NOT come on every time someone logged on. It would maybe be set up so that someone could hit a button to hear the theme song. So don’t worry about Alley Oop being pounded into your brain.

  19. From media articles.

    November 18, 2004
    Low-carb legacy hitting US pasta sales
    Falling pasta sales at leading US company American Italian Pasta reflect an industry-wide problem and demonstrate how a low-carb legacy may still undermine foods with a higher carbohydrate content.

    January 3, 2009
    FISCAL 2008 FINANCIAL RESULTS
    Revenues for American Italian Pasta for the year increased $171.1 million, or 43.0%, to $569.2 million, led by a 39.7% increase in revenue growth in the retail market and a 53.4% increase in the institutional market.

    When times get tough it appears that people head for the carbs.

    Or it appears that people head for carbs after almost five years of media propaganda that carbs are good. Reporting on every paper that shows a problem with low-carb diets (witness all the recent coverage of the pitiful study published recently in Appetite) while ignoring all those that show the benefit of low-carb diets.

  20. ME: Or it appears that people head for carbs after almost five years of media propaganda that carbs are good.

    Or, it could be a combination of the bad economy and media propaganda.

    The financial section of today’s Globe & Mail headlines the rise in American Italian Pasta sales article with “Low carb craze is dead. Now that’s Amore”. The choice of the noun seems to confirm your position. ‘Craze’ is defined as an activity that appears suddenly and achieves wide-spread but short-lived popularity. Thus the use of the term low carb craze in this context implies that the low carb movement is and was an irrational departure from the mainstream (healthful) North American high carb diet.

  21. “I don’t have a clue as to what it takes to get a wikipedia entry.”

    This lead me to Wiki and I found that you are cited as a resource in an entry on Low Carb Diets (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Low-carbohydrate_diet). I just read most of the article and feel that there are a few problems…..would you be interested in checking it out and commenting or clarifying some statements made?

    It is a long entry. And you’re right, there are some misstatements. I really need to go over it in depth before I could recommend specific changes. Plus, I don’t know how to make the changes if they need making.

  22. I do vaguely remember the song, though I’m a couple of yrs younger than you. I haven’t linked to the youtube yet but wasn’t there a chorus that went “alley-oop oop, oop oop”? I’ll check your link when I get home tonight since my computer at work doesn’t have the right software for YouTube.

    100% with you. This is the perfect song for this blog. Wasn’t there also a newspaper funny called Alley Oop?

    Go for it!

  23. Well, I got to hear the recording at home after work and I’ve been confirmed in both my queries. Thanks for including the recording and, where in the HECK did you find it? It really takes me back.

    There’s no question, this is the theme song for your blog.

    Had some bearcat stew for dinner (seasoned with a little garlic, basil and olive oil) and suddenly felt like ripping limbs off trees. Go Low Carb!

    Thanks. Jim

    Look at that Caveman go!

  24. Oh, and I think your next book should incorporate Alley Oop and this theme into it in some way. Possibly in the title? Cheers.
    JV

    I’m sure our publisher would love it.

  25. [Scott M. – very perceptive!! :>) ]

    Great post, Dr. Eades, and thanks for taking me back to the “good-old-days”. (Well, nothing I’d want to relive, but much simpler times, for sure. LOL) Loved that song back in 1960, the year I graduated from high school.

    Eades’ theme song – definitely.

    Corky

  26. Dr. Eades, almost everyone says they’re a little younger. I think I’m a little older. (June 8, l946) Such a cute photo of two grand-boys with you. Funny, the one on the right surprisingly looks like Mary Dan! It is so interesting to me that you were right here near St. Louis, MO for a few years in your youth. Didn’t Alley Oop end with something like “Ride Daddy, Ride.”? How about this song for your blog: Fame—“I’m gonna live forever..baby remember my name”. Regards from Adrienne Hirschfeld, St. Louis, MO

    Good to hear from you.