Interpretations:Unrelated Thing

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TMBG randomness[edit]

My interpretation of this is .... nothing. I think this is just good TMBG randomness. The verses and bridges match in no way other than they are talking about an unrelated thing. --DestinationMoon 15:44, September 17, 2005

Interpretation 2[edit]

Didn't there used to be more stuff here?

Anyway, I think that the song is basically self-explanatory, the man wants the woman to listen, and the woman can't be bothered. I like to picture that the first verse to have taken place right after the man proposed to the woman, and the woman laughed. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 20:37, September 17, 2005

And by the end of the song, her attitude changes from disengagement to active hostility. --Nehushtan 01:39, 17 Mar 2006 (CST)

Which Describes How You're Feeling[edit]

Yeah, this seems to be along the lines of Which Describes How You're Feeling, except this song is a horrible one and WDHYF is good...You feel sad for the man ^__^ —Preceding unsigned comment added by AgentChronon (talkcontribs) 20:35, August 21, 2006

Interpretation 4[edit]

Along with Twisting and I'm Your Boyfriend Now, this is one of TMBG's rare but solid string of feminist songs. It's about a guy, one of those guys who, you know, just doesn't *get* it. He can't understand that the "object" (cough cough) of his affections just isn't interested in him and why she won't pay attention to any of the stupid things he says to get her attention. Like someone wrote on the I'm All You Can Think About interpretations page, Linnell is the king of creepy. It reminds me of the Simpsons episode where the girl Bart likes, Jessica, eventually has to say to him, "do you ever think something you DON'T say?" I think the song's powerful and hilarious (I love the way Linnell draws out the words in the dialogue), not sucky one bit. I've also, most definitely, um, been that guy. -- The Silver Chauffeur 01:48, April 5, 2007

Interpretation 5[edit]

I think this song is about man who's trying to hold a woman's attention, but she's let her mind wander to a more pleasant thought. He takes it personally and demands her attention again before demanding to know what she's thinking of. I'm sure this exact situation plays out to various degrees in homes across the country. --Ms Fernandez 21:58, April 18, 2008

Interpretation 6[edit]

Right, the man can't get into his head that he and their relationship are not on her mind. In a way, she's ethereal or otherworldly; abstractly, she and her thoughts exist on a completely separate (unrelated) plane from the reality of her relationship with this man. Foolishly the man still tries to connect to her. Anyway, I just came here because I thought it was worth noting that in the first stanza the woman is speaking in the past tense, in the second stanza she's in the present, and in the third verse she is speaking in the future tense. Between each verse in the progression the narrator states the disconnect. It doesn't add much to any interpretation, but it's structures like these that I like. ~ magbatz 21:28, 6 July 2008 (UTC)


I find it fairly simple, really. A guy is proposing to his girlfriend and her mind has wandered to something completely different and she can't bring herself to focus and has no idea he's proposed. --CatronixVids 09:05, July 1, 2009

Interpretation 8[edit]

I see this as a relationship that has run its course. They've been together for a long time, but now she's just "over it".

Somewhere other than here
Something else besides the man

This is the most powerful part in the song for me. It lets me know that it's the man, in particular, that she wants to get away from. That made me think that the woman is dreaming of being out of an abusive relationship, but doesn't know how. --- Randy 07:05, 26 August 2009 (UTC)

Three unrelated things[edit]

The central pun of this song is between three senses of the phrase "unrelated thing".

In the first sense, it means an unstated topic unrelated to what the man has said, which has amused the woman. When asked why she smiles, the woman says it is not because the man is funny, but because she is "thinking of an unrelated thing".

In the second sense, it means a thing "unconnected and free, no relationship to anything" -- the philosophical notion of a monad or unconditioned being, an entity which exists but bears no relation with anything else in the universe. The thought that she is describing when she says "I was thinking of an unrelated thing" (in the first sense) is precisely the thought of an unrelated thing (in the second sense).

Finally, the woman is contemplating becoming an "unrelated thing" in a third sense: ending her relationship with the man and going "somewhere other than here" so she can think about other topics "besides the man" -- perhaps because the man interprets everything she does as being about him. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 03:57, November 8, 2009


It's a simple song addressing the fact that men and women think differently, and are therefore often unable to understand each other, even when it comes to simple matters. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:55, May 13, 2010

I have always thought it took place between a married couple[edit]

Although it would make more sense if the man and the woman switched roles, making it the man who's not interested in what the woman keeps saying to him. Kind of reminds me of the comic Pickles. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Tyrannosaurus George (talkcontribs) 21:51, July 25, 2011

"Three Unrelated Things" Is basically right[edit]

A lot of this song is left up to the listener's interpretation and sympathies. So, let's start with the four Dramatica story parts:

  • Situation: A couple seems to be having difficulty talking with each other.
  • Main Character: The guy, who keeps trying to talk to a girl who he is frustrated by-- she's either 'not taking him seriously', or is not even listening to him.
  • Impact Character: His presumed lover. Is she disinterested in him, or sincere despite somehow able to consider things not related to what he's saying? (FYI, this is only because I feel the man's worldview is impacted by the girl, who I consider wiser. Read on;)
  • Main VS Impact: The man seems in conflict with the girl--that she shouldn't laugh nor find him funny because he is speaking about something he does not find the same. The only way to keep his affection is to admit she's wrong to be unthinking of his concerns, versus still thinking of his concern & having a different and valid perspective.

As I see the song, it culminates in the man saying that if she explains what truly inspires her laughter or avoidance, he can feel closer to her and not feel taken for a fool. The girl's retort is that no matter what she thinks or feels, it'd be considered unrelated to his own matters.

Believe it or not, she's likely been proven true outside of this song. If she would offer why she found something funny, he would consider it unrelated and irreverent. If she wasn't proving she was listening to him when he wanted to talk to her, she would be disregarding his importance. This man feels small in front of this girl, and can't see it's unrelated to how she sees him

Quite fitting for someone who feels little, this man seems very hostile--to him, she laughs at his problems, which means she must consider them trivial in a belittling way. To him, she avoids his gaze and isn't even considering his words, minimizing him. All of this song is him demanding more out of her.

Ultimately, it sounds like the girl realizes that this man can't see her for what she is, as he has his own concept of what and who she is. Anything that _ACTUALLY_ comes from her is an unrelated _and an invalid, minimized_ thing to his concept of her.

If this explanation doesn't make much sense, Three Unrelated Things is another strike at a similar heart to this matter. --SoreThumb (talk) 16:34, 16 October 2013 (EDT)

Really Listening?[edit]

The above interps are fairly comprehensive, so I'd just like to point out a part of the lyrics that I find particularly amusing. In the last verse, the man pleads, "Aren't you listening to me?" The woman responds, "Not at all, not at all...I've been thinking of an unrelated thing." But in order to follow all the things the man has been saying, she has to be listening to a certain degree. She contradicts herself! --MisterMe (talk) 10:10, 6 February 2014 (EST)

Asperger's Syndrome[edit]

It's tempting to think of this as a relationship song because of the two characters being a man and a woman. Though I do believe it was probably intended as such, another interpretation came to me a few days ago. People diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome often find social situations uncomfortable and have a hard time understanding the rules of small talk, keeping eye contact etc. - The man's accusations can be interpreted in a way that suggests the woman has Asperger's Syndrome (or something similar to that): she does not look him in the eye as he is talking to her; the expression on her face is hard to interpret and possibly does not match what she is actually thinking; plus she is easily distracted (that may also suggest ADD, which shares some similarities with Asperger's), thinking of an "unrelated thing" without bad intent, not realizing it is making the man feel uncomfortable. --Freakiosis (talk) 07:18, 18 February 2015 (EST)

John Henry is All About the Same Death, But in Alternate Realities Tour[edit]

Welcome back to the HotelDetectiveInTheFuture John Henry is All About the Same Death, But in Alternate Realities Tour.

I have thought long (by that, I mean LONG!!) and hard about how this ties in to my theory. And I've finally figured it out.

The woman in this universe is the same guy, different gender (hey, it's a multiverse) and she is beginning to suspect she's dying in a whole bunch of other universes. But before she can fully piece that together, the man gets angry that she's not paying attention to what he's saying so he kills her.

Next stop: Interpretations:AKA Driver! - HotelDetectiveInTheFuture🪗 talk 🎸