Barenaked Ladies … XXX … Amsterdam!

Sorry … it’s not what you think.

First of all … When Jocelyn asked Ann about the three X’s on a lot of buildings and flags across Amsterdam, we could have been in some trouble. But it turns out that red XXX symbol is the official Coat of Arms for Amsterdam, not at all related to the famous Red Light District, which we managed to avoid visiting. The X’s are officially St. Andrew’s Crosses, and the three of them are said to represent charity, resolution and heroism … and/or “Heldhaftig, Vastberaden, Barmhartig” (“Valiant, Steadfast, Compassionate”).

OK. So what about the Barenaked Ladies part? For my birthday — observed concurrently with the Martin Family stay in Tuscany — Jenni, Kiana & Ange gave me the new Barenaked Ladies CD Snacktime, which has been played way more than 40 times on our various cross-country driving trips since. The band is from Canada, and the CD is really very good, featuring some great wordplay and a clever alphabet song. Definitgely not XXX.