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4/7/12

Pearl Jam - Sleight of Hand

 

Personal Thoughts:

The first time I remember hearing this song was live in concert. I remember thinking Ed's verbalized introduction of the song was pretty cool but then felt embarrassed when, after the first few notes, I didn't really recognize the song. I certainly didn't know the lyrics. At the time, I sort of sat that one out since I couldn't sing along but I made a mental note to give it a post-concert listen. After having done that it's become one of my favorite songs in the collection. I think everyone has moments where they feel so "normal" that it becomes frustrating. No one ever says, "I was born to work in this office," or, "Upper management has been my lifelong dream." Sometimes, this song comes on and just hits me like a ton of bricks.

At the concert I was at, Ed came out and introduced it beautifully by saying: "We played this song once so we could play it tonight, and i was kinda hearing the lyrics for the first time in awhile and I realized it's kind of about a guy that has one of those jobs where you go to work and you have to kinda put yourself away, or leave your real self in the car before you punch the clock or take your dreams and put them in your pocket and don't let anybody see them because they might seem laughable or something. These days it's nice to have a job at all but if you can get one where you can be yourself, that's a pretty great job. We want to thank you for giving that job to us. But it wasn't always this good. This song's called Sleight of Hand."

Lyrics:

Routine was the theme,... he'd wake up,..wash and pour himself
Into uniform,... something he hadn't imagined being...

As the merging traffic passed,... he found himself staring,..
Down,... at his own... hands..
Not remembering the change,... not recalling the plan,
Was it...?

He was okay,... but wondering... about wandering
Was it age?... By consequence?... or was he moved by
Sleight of hand?

Mondays were made to fall,... lost on a road he knew by heart
It was like a book he read in his sleep,... endlessly...
Sometimes he hid in his radio,... watching others pull into their homes
While he was drifting...

On a line,... of his own,... off the line,... on the side
Bye the by,.... as dirt turned to sand,
As if moved by sleight of hand...

When he reached the shore of his... clip-on world...
He resurfaced to the norm
Organized his few things,... his coat and keys...
Any new realizations... would have to wait...
Til he had more time,... more time...
Time to dream,... to himself... he waves goodbye,
To himself... I'll see you on the other side...

Another man...moved by sleight of hand...

1 comment:

  1. Wow, I couldn't agree more. This song is great and it has sort of become my life. But like Ed says I'm just glad to have any job because there are a lot o other people who aren't as fortunate.

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