Interpretations:Unpronounceable

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Descent into Madness[edit | edit source]

This song relays an example of introversion and, possibly, extreme antisocial behavior. The narrator meets someone (an attractive woman, presumably) at a party, who literally takes his breath away: "Time stopped / When you said hello / When you left / The clock began to breathe again". His brain seizes up and he can no longer think straight, much less remember her name. It might as well be unpronounceable; despite all the effort he puts into trying to recall it ("rewind the tape, review the blur"), it's still "Distorted and illegible".

Rather than attempting to track her down, he falls into depression, staring at the sofa where she sat. He turns to excessive drinking ("Wound down and nearly drowned / Lying on the ground"). It takes a major toll on his life, as all he can do is "Stare at the static and be hypnotized". The stuttering, chopped up vocals represent all he can say about anything anymore. --MisterMe (talk) 13:17, 19 March 2015 (EDT)

I expect when the person above me says "extreme antisocial behavior", they mean extreme social anxiety. "Extreme antisocial behavior" would be doing things to hurt others, or exploiting others for your own benefit.
Yes, that would be better way to phrase what I meant to say...good catch. --MisterMe (talk) 23:45, 4 August 2016 (EDT)

The puzzle that remains[edit | edit source]

Has any inquisitive listener asked themselves what is being said in the chopped up audio at the end? I hear a syllable like "much" in there (at 3:12) which doesn't really match any other vocalization heard in the rest of the song. But now that I've asked the question, I absolve myself of the responsibility to pry further. Unlike John here or J. Travolta in Blow-Out, I know when to walk away. ~ magbatz 14:53, 22 March 2015 (EDT)

I definitely hear the phrase "watch the videotape" in there. Nineteenseventyold (talk) 23:17, 14 March 2016 (EDT)

About A Name[edit | edit source]

I would think that this would be obvious.....but this is about someone whom the narrator meets who has a name that the narrator finds unpronounceable. That's it. Nothing else to it. The narrator makes a bold claim that the name is not just hard to pronounce, but is in fact completely unpronounceable. This song is a hyperbolic ode to unpronounceable names everywhere. Still, make of it what you will.

It's unsolved CAPTCHAs[edit | edit source]

-Unsolved because: Now all I do is think about The puzzle that remains I never figured out what that was If I couldn’t then I doubt I ever will

-Captchas are: unpronounceable Distorted and illegible

- if you can't read them you try to hear them: Rewind the tape, review the blur Never the same, but still obscure Turn up the sound and hear the white noise Zoom and enhance if that were even a

-After a while you get: Be hypnotized be hypnotized

Damn I have to solve a captcha for posting this interpretation.. --79.37.202.110 18:10, 7 April 2015 (EDT)

A foreign girl[edit | edit source]

The guy held a party and a pretty foreign girl who didn't speak much or any English attended as a guest of a friend. The guy was taken aback by the girl and could barely speak to her and as the party is now over and everyone goes home he watches the depression in the couch where she sat expand and tries to figure out what her name was.--Pittsburghmuggle (talk) 17:12, 11 April 2015 (EDT)

A Missed Connection and the Failure of Memory[edit | edit source]

I think it's about a missed connection -- someone meets someone they're immediately infatuated with (Time stopped/When you said hello/When you left/The clock began to breathe again) but they didn't quite catch their name -- and no matter how they try to remember (Rewind the tape, review the blur/Never the same, but still obscure), they can't quite. The narrator would love to contact the object of their affection, and dwells on the memory of the almost-connection, but knows they'll never figure it out. Jkfecke (talk) 01:18, 24 April 2015 (EDT)

I had similar thoughts but thought it might come after a one-night stand, not just a brief meeting. -- Rosefox

Alien Visitation[edit | edit source]

An alien has been surreptitiously visiting some guy (or gal) in his (or her) apartment, somewhere. The guy has been feeling watched for some time now and has grown alarmed at all the little bits of evidence in his home that make him think, "I am not alone."

He sets up surveillance equipment, as though this were a haunting. He waits in a cloud of paranormal activity and paranoia for the uninvited guest to show. His brain is doing overtime, and his heart is doubling that record.

The alien finally presents itself. It moves across the room and sits politely on his sofa. Introduces itself. Perhaps gives a monologue about why it has come to Earth and chosen this particular guy to be his liaison with Mankind. But this is all too much; the man just can't think straight.

And then the alien is suddenly gone, as though it had never been there to begin with.

The guy takes a moment. He feels as though he has just had "an episode." Was it real? He rushes into the other room to see what the video cameras picked up. Nothing but static. He stares in disbelief.

Days go by. He has not been himself since the visitation. He spends hours staring at the fading impression of alien buttocks in the cushion of his sofa. He watches the video again, and the white noise mesmerizes him. He spends his days going back and forth between video screen and the couch cushion.

He's hypnotized.

Not eating, not sleeping, one day he passes out. Lying in his own juices on the carpet, mayhap he finally understand the sound that the creature made as it spoke. He can hear its name in his dreams. It is still unpronounceable, and it never showed up on camera.

[submitted by Jeff F. Haines]

A medical condition[edit | edit source]

The narrator is diagnosed with a life-threatening condition with a lengthy, unpronounceable name. The first time he "found" the condition was when it left him "wound down and nearly drowned, lying on the ground"--fainting and suddenly, unexpectedly near to death. He doesn't really understand what it is or how to deal with it, and his whole life is put on hold. When it's cured, his life can start again, but he has no idea how to move on from having almost died, so he becomes with trying to understand the disease. He stares at images from ultrasounds and X-rays, but they're totally unreadable by the layperson. Everything written is in doctors' unreadable scrawls and full of words he doesn't know. Maybe the disease or the cure also interfered with his ability to understand what he's seeing or hearing. In the end it's all just static in his blurry mind. -- Rosefox

Breakup song[edit | edit source]

I actually heard this as yet another breakup song: the narrator's lover is gone, leaving only the depression on the sofa, and he's so destroyed by the experience that he blocks out memories of their life together and convinces himself he never even figured out what their name was. He thinks of the relationship as a timeless period with hazy, distorted details he can't recall. (Probably this interpretation is influenced by other songs on the album, such as "Erase", "The End Of The Rope" and "Let Me Tell You About My Operation.")

When he does remember a bit of it ("found your sound"), the experience is so painful that it's physically debilitating.

I think the "unpronounceable name" may be that he never had a real handle on who his lover was as a person. He's hypnotized by everything they do, but was never able to make any real sense out of it. -Peter