Interpretations:Why Did You Grow A Beard?

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Interpretation 1[edit]

Clealy this is a song about a no-goodnik, which I think is a drug user and abuser. There should be fewer times in this song as it becomes ultimately very confusing and not very much fun. But then.... who says it has to be fun? --Neill 22:12, January 17, 2006

I'm with Neil on this. It's a song about an over-abundance of times. The kicker is that there is only one person in the song. The narrator is singing to himself. --Lee 16:27, January 18, 2006

Interpretation 2[edit]

I think the song's about the narrator's friend, who, after being left alone for a while, has grown a beard and become what the narrator despises most - a hippie. In addition, he associates the beard with being a jerk (the turn signal). --Ecks 22:31, January 17, 2006


How can you tell what it's about - the song isn't finished. This is a scrap, the beginning of a song. The only thing that the song is about so far is daily irritations and people yelling at each other in irritation .... I say, let him finish it before we get into any heavy interpretation. ~Christina Miller 10:06, January 18, 2006

I really don't see the point of rading so much into this; and if it is not complete, then all of your guesses don't really mean that much. I do like the gags, though. "What the Christ!? What the Devil?!" (I say that now) I also like the "Would it kill to use signal when you cut me off; would it kill you!?" referring to road rage. —Preceding unsigned comment added by Rabiddeadworm (talkcontribs) 17:15, January 5, 2007

Interpretation 4[edit]

I found hippie through the beard, being dirty (garbage barge), animals taking over, tree hugging, etc. Just a guess. :P --Ecks 11:44, January 18, 2006

Interpretation 5[edit]

It kinda sounds like the same sound they were going for with "Through Being Cool" --Corey 20:48, January 18, 2006

Interpretation 6[edit]

I find that this song truly characterizes one of my friends. He grew a beard, and I was like, "Hey, man, why did you grow a beard?" And his name is Nick, so It fits with the part of the lyrics "Is there anywhere in the world for a no good Nick?" And I'm telling you, with that beard, he is up to no good. Yeah. He also screams and yells when he gets into his battle-frenzy. (IE "screaming, yelling") --(Turnip) 23:16, January 26, 2006


I suspect the 'Christ/devil' couplet is a gag related to the fact that both the mentioned characters are generally imagined with beards. ~SirDarrell 09:09, January 29, 2006

Man to monkey[edit]

I think it's a guy paranoid about the degeneration of society, with everybody in the world becoming less civilized (he says the people who rule this land must be animals) and growing beards, using less communication and skill with technology. ~ magbatz 23:30, March 13, 2006

Nah, I couldn't agree more. The song is totally about people unable to handle uncomfority. The "What the Christ? What the devil?" is just a reiteration of the prudish/puritanical nature of the narrator. I get the idea that its someone screaming at someone else in a car (the cut me off, deal.) Of course, it could be some obscure vehicle representing...something. -- 00:28, 20 Mar 2006 (CST)

Interpretation 9[edit]

I always thought it was a song about dealing with the fact that your father has gotten dementia, with lines like- "I can't leave you alone for five minutes, what the christ, what the devil?!" is the frustration, and men grow beards when they grow old and don't want to shave anymore? --LoveCraken

Interpretation 10[edit]

I always thought that this song was just about the Narrator asking why his friend grew a beard even though the friend looks really stupid with it and everyone he asked advised him not to. --Ouch 12:55, September 21, 2006

Interpretation 11[edit]

I personally think this is a song from a cantankerous, overbearing jerk's perspective. The dude is very bothered that his friend did something even as insignificant as growing a beard without his knowledge and acts as if he's the friend's keeper and knows what's best for him. This might just some random thing that puts him over the edge; he seems a little too bothered, unleashing some exasperated exclamations (What the Christ?! What the Devil?!). As stated by those above, he thinks society is degenerating and HE knows what's best, but nothing is going the way HE thinks it should go. He questions if there's at least somewhere these "no goodnik"s could be, other than impeding him. He's disillusioned with the supposedly-free world he lives in and is nearly mocking it in his frustrations (Is there nowhere in the Freedom-loving, Sister-hugging. . .) and then just breaks down in anger, pointing out the much-less-enjoyable-yet-much-more-realistic traits of the world that seem to envelope him (SCREAMING, YELLING). He further comments on the primitive behavior of the world, stating that "Animals rule this land". Someone cutting him off without using their signal (although I'm prone to believe that by this point he's just trying to find something to be angry at) is another thing that just sets him off. Again, this proves to be too much and his thoughts return to the small fact of his friend growing a beard. A little thing that has just eaten away at him, and he simply uses as an outlet for all his frustrations. The garbage barge line is rather puzzling. "Why did you put it on the garbage barge and tow it out into the. . ." perhaps is a metaphor for, after growing said beard, going out in public (with all the filthy, uncivilized animals who habitate this supposedly freedom-loving, sister-hugging, really screaming, yelling world)? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:36, October 1, 2007

Interpretation 12[edit]

Hilarious! Linnell kicks into the idea that beards breed vermin. Starting from such an irrational hysterical perspective makes the song a joy. The killer line is "Animals rule this land". Literally the world is ending because his friend grew a beard. Another bizarre omission from the Else. --(Mr Tuck) 17:16, April 2, 2008

Interpretation 13[edit]

Ahh, come on! You're all looking for this non-existent hidden symbolic message in this song when the meaning is unbelievably obvious! It's clearly about the heart-warming connection a man has with his daughter, and the obstacles they overcome by working together! Touching really. --Cooper 14:32, July 17, 2010


It's about being angry. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:56, December 7, 2010

Spock in Mirror Mirror[edit]

This song is obviously what went through Kirk's heads in the first couple of milliseconds of beaming back to the Enterprise at the beginning of Mirror, Mirror. Kirk can't leave Spock alone for 5 minutes, and he grows a beard! And Spock is obviously reminiscent of the devil. Sheesh! —Preceding unsigned comment added by N3QE (talkcontribs) 19:27, February 14, 2011

I officially endorse this interpretation. ~Millard R. Fillmore 19:46, February 14, 2011

So do I-random TMBG fan

Time Traveling John Linnell[edit]

In 2006, John Linnell was thrown to a portal to 2011, where he caught a brief glimpse of John Flansburgh's 2011-era beard before being sucked back to 2006. Clearly disoriented by this experience, Linnell scribbled this song together in a haze. Perspixx 02:38, 12 August 2011 (EDT)

Yes, this is the best interpretation I have seen. -Another TMBG fan

Maybe he saw himself in 2011 and decided not to grow one. -Who am I?


The narrator is either the same old angry yakker from Till My Head Falls Off or his twin. Get off my lawn! (*yells at a cloud*) --Nehushtan (talk) 00:18, 21 November 2019 (EST)

My biography[edit]

Clearly about me whenever I regrow a mustache (yes, I know a mustache is clearly not a beard)