As promised almost a year ago, here is installment number two of my collection of mondegreens, i.e., misheard lyrics. Finally! I trust you have been waiting with bated breath for this. You may now, devoted reader, breathe a sigh of relief. I have come to deliver on that promise. Incidentally, Microsoft Word does not recognize the term, so my vision is currently being assaulted with the underlined red squiggle under “mondegreens.” There it is again. How dare these miscreant software developers offend my sensibilities so? Even the paperclip seems to be looking at me disapprovingly. Smug bastard.
As last time, I am following the same format as in the famous books: misheard lyric; performer; song title; correct lyric.
Tell them all hookah, is smoking character . . . One man on the chessboard . . . and your mind is moving all . . . Have fallen softly dead . . . And the requiem’s offed his head. Remember, what the doormouth said.
Jefferson Airplane “White Rabbit”
Tell ‘em a hookah smoking catepillar . . . When men on the chessboard . . . and your mind is moving slow . . . Have fallen sloppy dead . . . And the Red Queen’s “Off with her head!” Remember, what the dormouse said.
That’s right. I butchered the crap out of these lyrics. I was reminded of that when I got the urge to sing it in the shower recently. I drew a complete blank on the correct lyrics, so sang what I thought they sounded like. Yes, I read Lewis Carroll’s classic. So, I should know better, right? Besides, I’ve heard it a bazillion times, since Grace Slick’s opus is ubiquitous as a soundtrack to let the audience know that something trippy is going on. Incidentally, I always thought this song was about drugs. “Go Ask Alice” is a famous diary from a drug-user, and there was some kind of mushroom involved. What other conclusion could I draw from that? Besides the time it was released, the lyrics sound like they were inspired by an acid trip. I suppose by association it is about drugs. Do you have a better explanation for how LC came up with that psychedelic imagery? It was like H.R. Pufnstuf in lit-form. Certainly, it wouldn’t pass for children’s fiction today. Oh wait—then how does one explain the Teletubbies? I digress.
Where is my job today?
Paula Cole “Where Have All the Cowboys Gone?”
Where is my John Wayne?
I don’t mean to be such a downer, but in this economy, this one isn’t such a stretch.
Been through the desert on a horse with no brain
America “Horse With no Name”
Been through the desert on a horse with no name
This might have been the product of the listener smoking pot while listening to this song, which, pretty much, is the best way to enjoy this tune.
If the horse had no brain, but did have a name, would he know? I might be able to ponder that philosophically if I wasn’t so baked.
What if I’m a mummy in these jeans of his?
Tori Amos “Crucify”
What if I’m a mermaid in these jeans of his?
Pfft. Mermaids are so 80’s. Mummies are the “it” mythical creature du jour. They are like caterpillars emerging from their cocoons into beautiful . . . zombies.
Run amok that ill
Kate Bush “Running Up That Hill”
Running up that hill
This is just stupid. It is beneath my intellect to even formulate a response. Puh!
He got a raisin in his shoe
Jim Croce “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown”
He got a razor in his shoe
What up, bitch? I’m walkin’ on nature’s sunshine fruit. That’s right. I’m bad.
As an aside, is it just me or does the new version of the Sun-Maid girl look like she would spread her legs for anyone who found his or her way into that vineyard? Just curious.
Kiss your soul heart. I’ll take your breast away
Sarah McLachlan “Possession”
Kiss you so hard. I’ll take your breath away
Wow. That is . . . awful. As if the song wasn’t creepy enough, that crosses the line from stalker to serial killer. Thanks for tonight’s nightmare.
I believe I saw La Bamba (jet planes)
I believe I saw the bombers (jet planes)
It was a passenger plane in which the music died, not to get technical.
Watch the freakers eat Kenneth is your, Benzedrine all wet?
R.E.M. “What’s the Frequency, Kenneth”
What’s the frequency, Kenneth, is your Benzedrine, uh-huh.
Um . . . what? It sounds like their Benzedrine did get all wet, with some unforseen side-effects. Either that, or they got hit harder than Dan Rather did by the lunatic who attacked him screaming that question.
We are the priests of the temple with earrings
Rush “The Temples of Syrinx”
We are the priests of the temples of Syrinx
Since most priests are closet homosexuals, that doesn’t surprise me. I know I know. It’s wrong. Sick and wrong!
And you steal rat meat in your Jesus Christ pose
Soundgarden “Jesus Christ Pose”
And you stare at me in your Jesus Christ pose
Maybe that’s why communion wafers taste like crap?
Bunnies on the table, the fire is cooking
Temple of the Dog “Hunger Strike”
But it’s on the table, the fire is cooking
That doesn’t sound like much of a hunger strike to me. Don’t get me started on the fluffy bunnies.
If there’s a barstool and your head rolls, don’t be alarmed now
Led Zeppelin “Stairway to Heaven”
If there’s a bustle in your hedge row, don’t be alarmed now
No chance of being alarmed, of course, considering my head inexplicably became detached from my body at the mere presence of a barstool. At most, my last sentient thought would be trying to connect the dots on that non sequiter.
You can tell by the way that I use my wok, that I’m a wooden man
Bee Gees “Staying Alive”
You can tell by the way that I use my walk, that I’m a woman’s man
You get a hard-on while making kung pao chicken? Kinky.
Grab your teeth I’ve come to take you home
Peter Gabriel “Salisbury Hill”
Grab your things I’ve come to take you home
Said the man to his grandfather in Salisbury Hill nursing home. Totally plausible.
The pinball wizard’s got such a super ass
The Who “Pinball Wizard”
The pinball wizard got such a supple wrist
I bet Elton John made that very observation.
Leaping lost anus
Sheryl Crow “Leaving Las Vegas”
Leaving Las Vegas
Since a lot of people have had their asses beaten in Vegas, it is apt, albeit a bizarre way to put it.
My dad lay and poohed on my room below
Pearl Jam “Jeremy”
The dead lay in pools of maroon below
No wonder that kid lost his shit.
Hey Joe, where you goin’ with that gum in your hair?
Jimi Hendrix “Hey Joe”
Hey Joe, where you going with that gun in your hand
To add insult to injury, the cheating bitch spat her Wrigley Spearmint into Jimi’s fro? Damn right she deserved to get shot!
In Nam’ bodies float
Jimmy Buffet “Margaritaville”
It’s nobody’s fault
And napalm sticks to kids.
Woman shits on the water, very queer
Crosby, Stills and Nash “Wooden Ships”
Wooden ships on the water, very clear
A floating version of a Boston plate job; that’s definitely some kinky shit.
They come to pluck the rooster
Alice in Chains “Rooster”
They come to snuff the rooster
Is plucking the rooster foreplay for choking the chicken? Me torture you long time, Yankee!
Feelin’ like a ham and mustard shake
Stone Temple Pilots “Interstate Love Song”
Feelin’ like a hand in rusted shame
Huh. Oddly specific, but I suppose it would suck to feel that way. Or at least you’d feel like Hell after you drank that!