Most of us have at least one song that we thought we knew the lyrics to, only to realize we were singing the wrong words. I do it all the time, but one of my strangest came from my favourite album, Boxer by The National. The song is “Racing Like a Pro” and it describes someone who’s miserable in his middle class job and middle class life, and doesn’t know how to escape it. The real lyrics are:
“Your mind is racing like a pro now
Oh my god it doesn’t mean a lot to you”
And of course the first time I listened, I heard line one as “Racing like a pronoun”. I’m a writer and probably think about pronouns more than the average person, but still? Do pronouns race? If so, is Nathan Detroit placing bets on them?
Everyone in my family has their own misheard lyrics. My husband listened to The Rolling Stones’ “Beast of Burden” for years, including the line “Yeah, all your sickness/ I can suck it up”. Except his personal variation was “All your sickness/ I’m a sunken duck”. True story.
And my youngest daughter told me about one of her own. In “Viva La Vida”, she thought “Now in the morning I sleep alone” was actually “In the morning I sleep til noon”. She couldn’t figure out why that was supposed to be a bad thing.
What about you? What’s your most entertaining misheard lyric?
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