Growing up, my sister and I would listen to the radio a great deal; it would be our inspiration and connect us to our emotions. One song that resonated us in grade school had to be “No Scrubs” by TLC from their 1999 album “Fanmail.” I must have been 11 years old at the time and my sister 10. We instantly fell in love.
The song is fun, catchy, easy to sing to, and above all relate-able to any teenager (pretty debatable). It became an instant classic. Even up until now – the age of 25 and 26, we play it in our homely basement apartment.
So where am I going with this? Growing up in the 90’s and into the 2000’s, I began to record many top 40’s songs on my blank tape. One of those songs was of course “No Scrubs.” (Imagine this ‘fresh’ teenager jumping out of bed as the radio was playing, slamming down with two fingers on the record and play).
Sad that we couldn’t just go out and buy the damn CD like every other teen. However we were grateful and made due – never taking it for granted.
As this tape finished up, both my sister and I rejoiced in having a timeless song. Can it really be considered such? I believe so. We never got tired of hearing it – sometimes rewinding and singing along.
Once we got a computer we downloaded music, and began buying CD’s like many others our age. So this entire mix tape business was a thing of the past! However it wouldn’t stay that way forever…
Just this past summer of 2015, my father and I worked tirelessly to fix up “Honey Bee” – my little yellow Volvo v40 station wagon with a cassette tape function (because the radio antenna was broken) and a lovely CD player.
Yeah… a women in her mid 20’s driving a station wagon with no kids to take to school or soccer practice but! I did have the JacobGirls and an entire summer to travel through the Tri-city and naturally as young girls do – the beach.
So – with my sister in Africa doing her internship – chasing Guinea fowl (some local alternative to chicken, development project) the JacobGirls were missing a key member…little did we know that she too was experiencing the what we soon would re-discover…TLC No Scrub.
WHAT?? Is she for real??…there are scrubs in Africa (well Ghana at least)…? Yes this is true, walking towards the local Tro Tro (the Ghanaian bus alternative, which is just an old German cargo van with seats bolted to the floor)
“A guy hanging out of the passenger side of his best friends ride”…was indeed hollering at her and her friend.
Getting back to Canada, the Jacobgirls decided to go back to the beach after a miscalculation in late March with the weather.
Now driving along a stretch of country road, mixed tape playing, “No Scrubs” finally made its way onto the speakers. The JacobGirls were hit harder than the summers humid air! It started a long love and admiration of a song that rang truth within each of us in our 20’s. We sang along – danced along and just had fun.
We bust into lyrics even if the song isn’t playing sometimes because we know it to ring some truth in our lives, it’s fun set of lyrics to make the moment just a little more “classic.” And just as that song connected me to my sister when we were 10 years old, it also connected us over the summer continents apart, adding to it 2 more lovely ladies.
“A scrub is a guy that thinks he’s fly
And is also known as a buster
Always talkin’ about what he wants
And just sits on his broke ass
We don’t want no scrubs – men will know this as we blaze through the city with song blasted in this old-school-yellow-station-wagon Volvo. JacobGirls motto towards boys – No Scrubs.
R.H. – L.H.
Watch TLC’s No Scrubs Music Video