Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Grammar Nazi: Sixties Album Rock Edition

I think sometimes when your brain is focused on something really, really big and important, it decides to take a break by fixating one something really small and insignificant.

In this way we balance our chi, or some damn thing.
My brain currently is worrying this like a dog on a bone:

There's a song by The Doors called "Blue Sunday." It's the rare Doors song that is a straight-up love song. I don't know, I kind of prefer it when Jim Morrison is singing about Texas radio and the big beat, or wanting to fuck his mother. But that's just me.

Anyway, "Blue Sunday" is a relatively obscure tune, but quite nice. Here's a video:

The lyrics are pretty simple. Really unobjectionable for a Doors song. Nobody is getting higher or squirming like a toad or milking babies.

However, there is this line:

My lover awaits for me in tender times.

If you're not an obsessive grammar nerd like me, maybe this line doesn't bother you at all.

But if you're going through a major life change and you want to avoid thinking about it for just a little while and you choose to do so by obsessing over a goddamn 45-year-old song lyric - and you're an obsessive grammar nerd - then maybe you realize that "await" is synonymous with "wait for."

Therefore, the phrase "My lover awaits for me" literally means "My lover waits for for me."

for for for for for for for
Why is this important?

It's not.

It's so not important.

But my brain is trying to cope with home repairs and the real estate market and impending divorce and single motherhood.

So this goddamn line by Jim Morrison (and Robby Krieger, who totally should have said something at the time) has become the most critical thing in the world.

And there's nothing I can do about it. The song is written, and recorded, and done. I can't make the offending phrase "awaits for me" disappear any more than I can shit a Nobel Prize.

Yet it allows me, for just a brief period of time, to forget that my life is on the cusp of changing forever, and I don't even know how to feel about that from one hour to the next.

In that light...thanks, The Doors, for this utterly insignificant syntactical lapse. You've given me something to take my mind off the larger issues of my existence.

Jim Morrison, wherever you are...thanks, man.


  1. There are several mistakes in Lou Reed songs which just about kill me. Not even grammatical per se, just mistaken lyrics, basically. "You get less time for stealing a car," he says in one song where he clearly means "MORE time."

    There's a band called of Montreal which had a lyric which bothered me so much I emailed the songwriter about what he emant: He said he meant whichever version was grammatically correct.

    I'm not a grammar Nazi, though. I'm a law Nazi, which is why i can't listen to Kanye West's "Golddigger" without fuming over why that poor football player didn't ask for a DNA test 18 years ago...

    1. Unfortunately, I have only the vaguest idea who Kanye West even is. And I have no idea which foor pootball player you're talking about.

      By football, I assume you do mean football, don't you?

    2. Fútbol americano, as opposed to what the rest of the world calls fútbol.

  2. I think your brain has its priorities perfectly in order. Yes, you've got a lot going on, but if you're a Grammar Nazi it's because you know everything is secondary to being able to clear, understandable communication. And as a poet Jim Morrison should have known better.

    I should give Morrison a pass, though, and be harder on Krieger. He's had more time to fix that mistake.


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