... but I stopped. Now I'm a dad, and may blog again...

Saturday, September 03, 2011

389: I Don't Want to Grow Up

I'm not a massive Ramones fan (although as I age they seem to get better and better), but I am a massive one with regards to Tom Waits. The Tom Waits original I Don't Want to Grow Up is a spectacular call for the creatives, outsiders and childlike to remain untroubled by the tedious fusses and futters of adult life. It is a song among songs, a song to end all songs. The lyrics we'll speak of shortly, but first the music: distorted vocals, acoustic guitar, pseudo-badly recorded, it just simmers along with pent up energy, never allowing that release. It's perfect. I just discovered the Ramones covered it, and made a music video animated by Daniel Clowes (Ghost World, Eightball). Perhaps it's the shock of the new, but the Ramones version seems somehow better. I can't explain it, and I'm not going to try. It doesn't matter; point is it's an amazing song, with lyrics I can't even explain how good:

When I'm lyin' in my bed at night
I don't wanna grow up
Nothing ever seems to turn out right
I don't wanna grow up
How do you move in a world of fog that's
always changing things
Makes wish that I could be a dog
When I see the price that you pay
I don't wanna grow up
I don't ever want to be that way
I don't wanna grow up
Seems that folks turn into things
that they never want
The only thing to live for is today...
I'm gonna put a hole in my TV set
I don't wanna grow up
Open up the medicine chest
I don't wanna grow up

I don't wanna have to shout it out
I don't want my hair to fall out
I don't wanna be filled with doubt
I don't wanna be a good boy scout
I don't wanna have to learn to count
I don't wanna have the biggest amount
I don't want to grow up

Well when I see my parents fight
I don't wanna grow up
They all go out and drinkin' all night
I don't wanna grow up
I'd rather stay here in my room
Nothin' out there but sad and gloom
I don't wanna live in a big old tomb on Grand Street
When I see the 5 o'clock news
I don't wanna grow up
Comb their hair and shine their shoes
I don't wanna grow up
Stay around in my old hometown
I don't wanna put no money down
I don't wanna get a big old loan
Work them fingers to the bone
I don't wanna float on a broomFall in love, get married then boom
How the hell did it get here so soonI don't want to grow up
-Tom Waits, Kathleen Brennan

What more can I say? Is there anyone who doesn't feel like that. By the way, I'm not having a pre-30 crisis. I don't have a problem with getting older; I just don't want to grow up. I love robots, and rockets, and space, and dinosaurs, and drawing, painting and writing stories. I collect toy octopuses; have shoe boxes full of postcards. I hate getting my hair cut. I love science and science fiction. I love Viz. I love swearing, but not too much. I love colours, shapes and lights. I get excited looking at a map of the world. I love wrestling, and lego, sometimes at the same time. I don't want to grow up.