In the song "Stupid"...

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longintheface
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In the song "Stupid"...

Postby longintheface » Sun Mar 02, 2008 6:57 pm

Does anyone know what the line "New York soon will hum the electric car has come" has to do with the rest of the song? It's been bugging me lately. The whole song is really straightforward--he's talking about the girl, about how she makes him feel and all that--and then, seemingly out of nowhere, he's talking about New York and electric cars. Please explain.
Thank you.

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Squid
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Postby Squid » Sun Mar 02, 2008 7:35 pm

Well, I think this is an excellent question, and one that Cap'n Jack might consider answering in his -->BLOG<--, especially considering that he is in the process of writing a completely new set of lyrics as we speak! What better time to get all hellza retrospective, eh? Thematic unity!

Thanking you in advance, Squid

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Postby sour29 » Sun Mar 02, 2008 7:44 pm

Actually, I wouldn't expect JR to publicly talk about in-depth meanings of songs... some four years ago, he said on this very message board:

Actually, you know, [Mimi]'s been around for a while now and the two of you have come very close to the story behind it, which is so impressive to me and such a testament to your close listening that I'll go against my better judgement and fill in some of the blanks, although that by no means is any promise of ever explaining a song in the future.


I think he has also, a number of times, said he sometimes prefers others interpretations to original source material and doesn't want to spoil our imagination with easy answers.

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Postby Liesbeth » Sun Mar 02, 2008 11:56 pm

I can understand how you wonder about a line like that showing up all of a sudden. However, to this day I rather regret knowing where the giant fork and spoon came from and as such am opposed to any lyric explanation. Even though I'm dead curious where 'Rice won't grow at home' comes from...

(My 2 cents, which I know are worth nothing with the current rate of the dollar vs the euro.)

ps: welcome to the board, Longintheface, it's nice to know that real people still join the list, not just spammers.

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Postby Squid » Mon Mar 03, 2008 8:47 am

sour29 wrote:Actually, I wouldn't expect JR to publicly talk about in-depth meanings of songs... some four years ago, he said on this very message board:


That same person also told us once about having no interest in blogging. I'd say all bets are off. ;)

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Postby Harvey Winters » Mon Mar 03, 2008 10:41 am

In talking to John at shows, "Giant fork and spoon" was a kind of "pop-art" reference...
Depending how old you are, either in your own house, or every other house you visited, there was ALWAYS a giant fork and spoon, sometimes crossed like swords, hanging on the kitchen walls...

These are still in my mom's kitchen

Image

Maybe "giant fork and spoon is a sign that the game is on", is a dueling reference...
Like in the old movies, when men would pull crossed swords off of the wall, to kill each other with???

Back on topic: "NY soon will hum" could just be a filler...
I know John lived in NYC, but I can't see how hybrid cars is any reason to possibly lament over lost love...
Last edited by Harvey Winters on Mon Mar 03, 2008 10:56 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Harvey Winters » Mon Mar 03, 2008 10:53 am

Image
&
Image

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Postby Betty Felon » Mon Mar 03, 2008 11:34 am

sour29 wrote:Actually, I wouldn't expect JR to publicly talk about in-depth meanings of songs... some four years ago, he said on this very message board:

Actually, you know, [Mimi]'s been around for a while now and the two of you have come very close to the story behind it, which is so impressive to me and such a testament to your close listening that I'll go against my better judgement and fill in some of the blanks, although that by no means is any promise of ever explaining a song in the future.


I think he has also, a number of times, said he sometimes prefers others interpretations to original source material and doesn't want to spoil our imagination with easy answers.


Hmmm. I seem to remember our interpretations were so infuriatingly awful that he eventually broke down in exasperation and explained Mimi.

Not that I'm trying to give you any ideas or anything...

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Postby sour29 » Mon Mar 03, 2008 11:46 am

Harvey Winters wrote:but I can't see how hybrid cars is any reason to possibly lament over lost love...
"New York soon will hum / The electric car has come" -- impending change? Obviously, it's not to be taken literally...

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Spoiler alert, Liesbeth.

Postby John » Mon Mar 03, 2008 8:18 pm

Filler!? Filler?!?! There are no "Filler" lyrics in my songs!

In "Stupid" the narrator is looking into the future and trying to determine the possible outcomes of either going after the girl or not going after the girl, and in the second verse he's picturing the future as he imagines it with the two of them together. She laughs when he pretends to fall, rather than being embarrassed, which is a sure sign. His friends have changed their "cup is half empty" tune also, now worrying that she likes him too much. And New York hums with thousands of electric cars.

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Postby Harvey Winters » Mon Mar 03, 2008 8:43 pm

I'm sorry... :(

But then again, Chris Paine is still wondering when that time "will" come....
Last edited by Harvey Winters on Tue Mar 04, 2008 1:30 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Liesbeth » Tue Mar 04, 2008 12:31 am

y'know, until I knew the Long Winters I had no idea every American household had a fork and spoon on their kitchen wall. I guess the Dutch are too thrifty to put those on our walls as decoration, instead we would use them with our wooden salad bowls - in the 70s this was all the rage.

my day is well however, seeing a picture of Spoon.

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Postby sour29 » Tue Mar 04, 2008 2:24 am

On that note, Stupid is a damn fine song. That, and Cinnamon are the two songs I remember hearing at the first show and being like "whoa! these songs are entirely too catchy for their own good!"

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Postby leigh » Tue Mar 04, 2008 10:41 pm

Actually, I wouldn't expect JR to publicly talk about in-depth meanings of songs...


It seems like John's strategy might be to impose a 5 year waiting period after the release of a song before offering some insight on their inspiration. I appreciate that his lyrics leave so much room for personal interpretation, but it sure is fun to finally get the "key."

On that note, Stupid is a damn fine song. That, and Cinnamon are the two songs I remember hearing at the first show and being like "whoa! these songs are entirely too catchy for their own good!"


And on that note, I was suddenly reminded that when I first heard Shapes, not only did I not recognize it as a Long Winters song (probably 'cuz it also was so "catchy") but actually thought, "Hey, XTC put out a new album?!"

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Postby h4ck » Sun Mar 09, 2008 12:40 am

im DYING to get over there next month for queens day.

not related to anything here.



Liesbeth wrote:y'know, until I knew the Long Winters I had no idea every American household had a fork and spoon on their kitchen wall. I guess the Dutch are too thrifty to put those on our walls as decoration, instead we would use them with our wooden salad bowls - in the 70s this was all the rage.

my day is well however, seeing a picture of Spoon.

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Postby Liesbeth » Sun Mar 09, 2008 5:55 am

you are actually pretty on topic, since it is quite possible to find a wooden salad bowl set on one of the queensday free-markets

I know I only just said I never want to have any lyrics explained, but I have to say that this info about Stupid makes me appreciate the song more. I had a very different explanation of NY soon will hum, which was great but didn't make any sense in the context of the song. Now the song is more of a unity in my mind. I still don't want to know about Rice don't grow at home, though.

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Re: Spoiler alert, Liesbeth.

Postby A Brutaful Smile » Mon Mar 10, 2008 10:21 am

John wrote:Filler!? Filler?!?! There are no "Filler" lyrics in my songs!


ya know, beck just came out recently admitting that most of the lyrics in his more famous songs are more or less filler. they weren't supposed to be actual lyrics but when they went in to record and he just threw some lyrics out there to help lay out a track those lyrics weren't meant to stay. but he left them and the rest is history.

i'm just sayin...

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Postby Moni » Tue Mar 11, 2008 11:27 am

Liesbeth wrote:Even though I'm dead curious where 'Rice won't grow at home' comes from...


Liesbeth wrote:I still don't want to know about Rice don't grow at home, though.



Make up your mind, lady! :)

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Postby longtimecoming » Tue Mar 11, 2008 6:01 pm

i figured it was about jeff j lin. also the line 'u know karate now? from a show?' was about how when HD went bust jeff claimed he mastered karate during his downtime...and that evan wrote a book, mike squires and john got (who i knew as 'the other guy') in a fight, and john went to europe. of course, sean ditched the hd outfit, by joining the ldubs. and picked up the tambourine. im glad he did, cause that is how i found about the ldubs. sean should be greatful to have john take him in as a keyboardist/backup singer.

FIN. Jroth-speakeasygiggles *rothman* is a better choice too.

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Postby Liesbeth » Wed Mar 12, 2008 11:01 am

Moni wrote:Make up your mind, lady! :)

Hell, I can't even quote the LW coherently. Rice don't grow at home is bad grammar so I should have known better. Or it points to a plural form of rice, which could be very deep indeed.


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