THE September school holidays mean only one thing: yay and road trip! Which is kind of two things, unless you say, ''Road trip, yay!'', which is what happens at our place.
Our last trek was a musical odyssey. The school had had a car boot sale, providing the ideal chance to go through 20 years of CDs and lighten the load a little. How do you decide whether to throw out Jason Donovan's Ten Good Reasons? Surely Billy Bragg's The Internationale is as good now as it was when she had shoulder pads and you wore winklepickers and you were utterly rat-faced and yelling at each other?
So, some CDs stayed, many were car-booted and others were put into the car for a final trial. It was like The X Factor - the acts came with fantastic stories but it was the music that kept them alive. Clapton (Richard) was saved. Jim Croce made the cut on that-was-the-music-we-listened-to-when grounds but Kim Wilde and Rick Astley barely made it past the first song. In fact, all Stock Aitken Waterman was punted unless it was Jason or Kylie. Kiss were interesting. The kids hadn't heard of them.
In fact, the very idea of grown men putting on nasty clown make-up and high-heeled boots and alternately sticking their tongues out and pouting while singing rock intrigued. We started by showing them the Dynasty album cover because it has the best close-ups of their make-up and worked through YouTube clips of Rock and Roll All Nite, Shout it Out Loud and I Want You. They didn't need to know about Shandi - Kiss had lost their edge by then.
Suddenly my wife said: ''You want to hear the first ever rap song?'' She was holding The Best of Blondie CD.
I suggested she'd lost her mind because we all knew that Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five had the first rap song. We all remember The Message, right? ''It's like a jungle sometimes, it makes me wonder, how I keep from goin' undah huh huh ha ha ha!'' and all that.
Jacquie said: ''That's the first rap song you knew. For the rest of the world it was Rapture, by Blondie.''
The kids weren't too sure about the guy from Mars who was eatin' cars, and eatin' bars but now he only eats guitars. They said it was just talking, not rapping. But they liked the song so much we listened to the whole album and decided to form a band and play only Blondie songs. And then they suggested we listen to their favourite rap songs and see how things have changed.
As hard as we tried, it was difficult to isolate the actual words, particularly in songs by Nicki Minaj. When you hear her, you get the gist of what she's saying. It's just hard to write the lyrics down on paper. So then our youngest Googled the lyrics and it was all perfectly clear.
''He a muthaf---in trip, trip, sailor of the ship, ship/ When he make it drip, drip kiss him on the lip, lip.''
So clear, we're not sure she should be on the regular playlist but it's pretty catchy.
Things got really interesting when we tried to explain how a big bloke named after a minced meat and vegie mash-up (Meatloaf) was trying to find Paradise by the Dashboard Light - and what the hell baseball and getting to third base had to do with it. Happy miles.