Ragged Claws

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

"I said I'd been sick with viral pneumonia, but you thought I said 'blue roses.'"*

I learned tonight that I had been mishearing a line in the Stars song "Life Effect." The actual lyrics are these:

Sorry for wasting your time
Five long months on the telephone line
Hours of asking if you were fine
And saying I was fine too.

However, I heard the latter lines as:

I wasn't asking if you were fine
And saying I was fine too.

Which version, honestly, I think I prefer for its wry humor. And since it's not actually what Stars sang, the line can be redeployed in other contexts, without it being blatant theft! Woohoo! (Okay, some rewording might be necessary. But still, it's nice to have a clever line just dropped into your lap like that, no conscious effort required.)

My favorite personal mondegreen, though, is probably the transformation of "Bid my blood to run," from Evanescence's "Bring Me to Life," into "be my binturong." Despite recognizing from the outset that this interpretation could not possibly be correct (in a strictly literal sense), I still stuck with it because hey, it's correct in a deeper moral sense. And in the end, isn't that what's important? (The answer is no.)

*In a post about semi-plagiarism, it's probably appropriate to note that this line comes from the one-act play "For Whom the Southern Belle Tolls," by Christopher Durang.


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