CAR POOL I mentioned in August that I had a pretty taciturn car pool -- a bunch of 6th grade boys who would crawl in one at a time on Thursdays and say profound things like "hey, dude." That all changed in the fall though. I found the secret. The Beach Boys. I had tried lots of music: U2, Eagles, Beatles, etc. But it was The Beach Boys that popped the cork on conversation. For some reason, these guys know the BB tunes. "Help Me, Rhonda," "Sloop John B," "Surfin' USA," "Surfin' Safari," etc. And when "I Get Around" comes on it's karaoke time! With Beach Boys playing, there is a buzz of excitement. Now instead of no one talking, everyone is talking. Once they're loosened up a bit by The Beach Boys, we can move on to better stuff: Van Morrison ("Brown-Eyed Girl"), B. W. Stevenson ("My Maria"), Kingsmen ("Louie, Louie"), Steppenwolf ("Magic Carpet Ride"), and, of course, CCR ("Down on the Corner"). Plus, these are still just kids, so anything from Shrek works nicely (think: Smash Mouth's "All Star" or the Monkee's "I'm a Believer"). The reason I'm thinking about it this morning is that I forgot the Beach Boys CD. We were back to contemplative.