The Saddest Song in the World
by Ice Cream Jonsey
I'd like to tell you about the saddest song in the world. But first, backstory.
My girlfriend, Vitriola, likes death metal. It's music you have to seek out and find. They -- the sickening shills that make up most radio in the 21st century -- aren't playing this stuff. They tend towards country music which is really pop and pop music which is really an album filled with glorified karaoke singers that looked good on TV. Nobody in death metal looks good on TV, because nobody in death metal can afford a television set. Hey, I'm not pointing fingers. I wouldn't look good behind the wheel of a Harley Davidson. Plus, as near as I can determine, the death metal community is made up of less than a few thousand people. That's even less human index mass than who went to "Serenity"!
You get to see about four bands, on the average, when you buy a ticket for a death metal show. Be sure to have your tickets there at will-call, because otherwise the stinking array of line cutters will perform a phenomenon I like to call, "Nobody At The End Gets Any Fucking Tickets." Allow me to explain.
Let's say this is the length of the line:
And we'll put the ticket purchasing / pickup window the left, the true end of the line.
And we'll note that at a point in the middle of the line, the people at the end of the line can't see the people at the middle. Say.... where it says DICKS:
 ******* DICKS **************
OK, here's what happens. A group of guys and girls (they are almost always mixed-gender) will pretend that they know somebody in the middle of the line. They will be loud, noisy, congenial -- and they will select the least aggressive-looking person in the middle of the line to insta-befriend. They use the girls who are with them (who are never particularly hot or unhot, just normal girls) as a sort of buffer, due to the fact that a person already in line who realizes he is getting cut is less likely to start shit when someone, even the cutter, is out with their girl. And if the cutters aren't "dating," well, maybe that's a single girl who they could get to know.
The persons at the end of the line have no idea this is going on. They are blissfully unaware. They probably don't have tickets so they need to get up there and buy them before the show sells out.
The other people who can see themselves getting cut witness social cues that indicate that maybe the cutters "know" the people they are talking to and, hey, it's cool to save a spot for your friends in line, right? Plus, the people who can see themselves being cut are still pretty close to buying their tickets. Maybe they already have their tickets and are just picking them up, in which case, who cares enough to make an issue out of it?
I know that the hipsters who perform this manuever think they are getting away with it, but everyone can tell that you cut because you're too stupid to pretend to be conversational with the group you transparently pretended to know. We as a society are slowly growing to loathe you. Seeing how the people that perform this trick go about 5'7", 135 lbs, it's going to eventually get ugly. This stunt can only work for so long. I don't take my girlfriend out to these things without first buying tickets, but sooner or later I'm going to forget or we're going to decide to go in the spur of the moment and there's going to be a problem. This is your Internet warning. Your eWarning. Or probably, in your case, an iWarning, you fucking scenester label fag.
Anyway, we go to enough of these death metal shows that I have a statistics base I can draw from regarding concert-goers. I thought presenting proof of it would be a better demonstration of our frequent attendance then me simply listing all the bands we've seen, which comes off as name-dropping.
Last winter Vitriola saw that Death Cab for Cutie was coming to Denver. Did I want to go? Turnabout is fair play, and DCfC is as far away from death metal as you can get.
Ben Gibbard, whose rendition of Cyndi Lauper's "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" is the most depressing song to ever exist, is the front man for Death Cab, and he put on a great show. As I'm in my thirties, I have no idea what musicians look like and I was at first confused with the opening band came on. They played three songs that sucked before they said who they were. The most annoying person in rock was the lead singer for the shit-sucking opener and I wish I could remember the name of the band in order to have them hilariously do a Google search on their name and find this website (which I'm sure they would be doing, Just trust me). After the 4th, 5th and (freaking Christ!) <i>6th</i> song -- I am going to leave the unparsed italics there because that's how shocked I am -- the lead singer said, "We are (Band X). From (Home city). Next is Death Cab for Cutie. From Boston. And then he'd repeat it, like we were stupid children.
When Death Cab took the stage, Ben Gibbard cracked a small joke, something like, "Thanks to (Band X). I understand they are from (Home City)?" Ha ha ha, well played. Any time the headliner opens mocks the opening act I'm a fan.
Death Cab for Cutie played a great set, one of the best concerts I've ever been to.
They did not play the Saddest Song in the World. I have linked it here so that you may "enjoy" it as well.
Come home in the early light
My mother says when you gonna live your life right
Oh momma do you know the fortunate ones?
And girls, they wanna have fun
Oh, girls just wanna have fun
You have to go in with the understanding that the narrator hauntingly wants to be a girl. I mean, go in with that impression, which is very well-stated, and you can't help but feel the longing. His mother, on his side, wants to know when the narrator is going to live his life "right." In other words, as a woman. He then asks his mother if she knows the fortunate ones, which she does, because the guy's mother is a girl. Was a girl.
Phone rings in the middle of the night
My father yells, 'What you going to do with your life?'
Oh daddy do you know you're still number one?
And girls, they wanna have fun
Oh, girls just wanna have fun
We are introduced to daddy issues here. All the narrator did was get a phone call in the middle of the night. I think we can draw some conclusions regarding the fact that daddy isn't asleep because he has to be at work the next day, or up early to mow the lawn. I posit that daddy drinks.
That's all they really want
Is some fun
When the working day gets done
Oh girls, they wanna have fun
Oh girls just wanna have --
The narrator keens so longingly here... We do not hate him for rhyming "want" and "fun" -- he didn't do it. A girl named "Cyndi" did. Because she can. Is the reference to the working day an indicator that our hero will not be able to "be" a woman while at work? But that afterwards he will be allowed to have fun? No, I'm asking. I am seriously asking, post in the BBS and tell me.
Girls, they wanna have fun
Girls... they wanna have fun
Some boys take a beautiful girl
And hide them away from the rest of the world
I want to be the one to walk in the sun
And girls they wanna have fun
I think it's clear that the beautiful girl we're talking out here is the REAL girl that our narrator is. But he -- the boy -- has to hide her away due to shame. We are told what he would like to do, which is to walk in the plain sunlight. To be revealed. To no longer have to be hidden.
You might hear records with a stronger push from their publisher, but here is a fact: Ben Gibbard's rendition of Girls Just Want to Have Fun is the best and most important male recording of 2006. I wish his character courage.
About the author: Ice Cream Jonsey listened to that song about a hundred times while trying to write this article, but is already having plenty of fun as-is and enjoying being able to parallel park.