Growing up, I had to go to mid-week confirmation classes from 5th grade to 8th grade. They were right after school and usually the last thing you wanted to do on a Wednesday afternoon. I would much rather have gone home and watched reruns of The Newlywed Game on USA, but no. Instead, we sat for a good two hours and learned all sorts of stuff. As if devoting an entire Sunday morning wasn’t enough. It’s no wonder that pretty much everyone went through a phase of not going to church after they were confirmed.
Part of confirmation classes was the requisite memory work. We memorized a whole litany of things – the Ten Commandments, the Lord’s Prayer and the Apostles’ Creed. And thanks to Martin Luther, not only did we have to memorize the text of each of these, but there were also meanings to go along with them. Proving that you can take the boy out of the Lutheran church but you can’t take the Lutheran church out of the boy, I still remember a lot of these. The ones that really stick are the meanings to the commandments, partially because we started with those every year so by the end of the 4th year, they were drilled into my brain and I couldn’t have forgotten them if I tried. The Apostles’ Creed, which was a profession of everything that Lutherans believed in, was a bit harder – mostly because it was longer and more difficult to cram into your brain. I still remember saying it in my head while I did my morning paper route during my 8th grade year. I know. What can I say?
Whenever I listen to today’s song – Kylie Minogue’s “I Believe In You” – I think of it as something of an anti-creed. Mostly, this song is all about what Kylie doesn’t believe in.
Don’t believe you know me
Although you know my name
I don’t believe the faults I have
Are only mine to blame
I don’t believe in magic
It’s only in the mind
I don’t believe i’d love somebody
Just to pass the time..
And that’s just the first verse.
“I Believe In You” was written for Kylie by Jake Shears and Babydaddy of Scissor Sisters, and you can really tell. It’s a shimmery disco song that suits her perfectly. It was sent to me by a friend as 2004 turned into 2005 and is probably the song that really got me full force back into Kylie. After buying her first album, she fell off my radar, even though I was tangentially aware that she was still around and doing well everywhere but in the U.S. I knew a handful of tracks off of Light Years, and naturally, I paid attention to “Can’t Get You Outta My Head.” But even as late as 2004, I didn’t really think that Kylie could sustain herself across a whole album – an opinion driven primarily by my dissatisfaction with Body Language, which came out that year. But “I Believe In You” got me to buy Ultimate Kylie which collated most of her best known songs and from there, it was over. I was rehooked.
There was a proper video for “I Believe In You” but when I think of a visual for the song, I think I’ll always recall her performance of it on the Aphrodite Tour in 2011. We traveled all the way to Dallas to see the show – still not the farthest I’ve gone to see a live show – and it was worth every bit of the drive. In addition to being the gayest show on Earth, it was Anna’s first real concert. She declared it loud but once some kind folks got her fitted with silicone ear plugs (the cotton balls I had brought did not cut it for her), she danced away like she was a pro. She’s since been to Marina & the Diamonds and will be seeing Cher next June. As you can see, she only sees fabulous shows.
If only I could have memorized Kylie lyrics for confirmation class – she only believes in one thing: YOU.