13 June 2009

When "Shuffle" isn't random

This afternoon I was cutting my lawn, as I am wont to do every 5-8 days, and listening to my Philips 2 GB GoGear MP3 Player, as I am also wont to do. (I know, I know, you're all jealous of my high tech-ness)

To keep things interesting as I'm mowing, I occasionally put the player on "shuffle" to, or so I thought, be surprised by what songs would be played. But if the same songs come up in the same order how's that "shuffling" the songs? (If I shuffled a deck of cards and each time I did every player got the same cards in the same order, someone would rightly call foul.)

If I wanted a regular grass cuttin' playlist,* I'd make one. If I'm shuffling, then should the player actually shuffle the darned songs?


Preliminary Grass Cutting Playlist*

(It's Not Easy) Being Green (the version by Frank Sinatra or Van Morrison)

What a Day for a Daydream (The Lovin' Spoonful)
(with that line about lying down on a freshly mown lawn)

Pleasant Valley Sunday (The Monkees)

Our House (Crosby Stills and Nash)

Dogs in the Yard (Fame Movie Soundtrack)

You Can't Come and Play in My Yard (pop song from the early 20th Century)

Other suggestions?


  1. Have you turned your player off and on? Sometimes the way shuffle works is that it *first* shuffles, then plays the resulting playlist--it's not shuffling on-the-fly.

  2. Wilson Pickett - Don't Let The Green Grass Fool You
    Hugh Masekela or Friends of Distinction - Grazin' In The Grass
    Gary Lewis & The Playboys - Green Grass
    Tom Jones - Green Green Grass Of Home
    The Move - I Can Hear The Grass Grow

  3. 1) Yes, it will have been turned off several times at least over the course of any given week. That's what's odd, when I go to use it again, while it may start with a different song, the "shuffle" order will be quite familiar. (With several hundred songs on the thing, should I have the same 40 songs playing each time I cut my grass?)

    2)Good list!