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Penisgeek Chrestomathy: The Essential Cubicle Nosepicker

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  1. The Essential Cubicle Nosepicker (or Any Other Day This Year)
  2. Drawer of Knives
  3. Everything Seems Clear (or I will Sew Every Seed That Falls)
  4. The Dreams of Buried Children
  5. She Made A Simile (To Explain to The Drunks It Was Time To Leave)
  6. Demystified, Disenchanted, But Still Stirring Delusional (I'm Bigger Than Atmospheric Pressure, Larger Than Weather Could Be)
  7. Mom's Favorite Bum (or The Price of Money)
  8. America's Lear
  9. Failure for Dummies
  10. America's Lear (Reprise)
  11. Black Cloud Over Charlestown
  12. The Grain of Deity in Woman
  13. Beautiful Like Me
v1. 11/23/99

The words:
  1. The Essential Cubicle Nosepicker (or Any Other Day This Year)
  2. Drawer of Knives
  3. Everything Seems Clear (or I will Sew Every Seed That Falls)
  4. The Dreams of Buried Children
  5. She Made A Simile (To Explain to The Drunks It Was Time To Leave)
  6. Demystified, Disenchanted, But Still Stirring Delusional (I'm Bigger Than Atmospheric Pressure, Larger Than Weather Could Be)
  7. Mom's Favorite Bum (or The Price of Money)
  8. America's Lear
  9. Failure for Dummies
  10. America's Lear (Reprise)
  11. Black Cloud Over Charlestown
  12. The Grain of Deity in Woman
  13. Beautiful Like Me




THE ESSENTIAL CUBICLE NOSEPICKER
Dick and Ruby live together in Charlestown, Massachusetts (near Sullivan station). They share a bed, attend functions together, visit family on the holidays, and go to parties with mutual friends every so often. They make love three times per month. Dick is on his third job in the city. He's making pretty good cash in a pretty smart corporate environment (business advisory services). He's at work right now. So is Ruby. She works at paint-it-yourself pottery store in Cambridge. She sells pots that people paint themselves.

Ruby: He holds his head too high. His shoulders show the strain. He insists that discomfort's right. He modeled all his plays like the smart men. He finished all the tasks in his work plan. I don't know why he perseveres, but "persevere" is all he hears, any other day this year

Both: Any other day this year

Dick: I allocate my time like my boss can. I slave away on my work plan. I don't know why I persevere. There is a mark that I have to hit, so I'll achieve, a certainty, an amnesty…

Both: Any other day this year

Ruby: He holds his breath too long, gripped tight within his lungs. He can't hold anymore today. He finished all the tasks in his work plan. He's dumped all his patience in the quicksand. He'll fall off the wagon before he cries, strangle himself with his tie…

Dick: We could sign to drive a ship, to sail a ship to sea. We could live off the wind, off the mists and breeze

Ruby: You could rise above your mighty mast, to lunge and plunge within the depths, to concentrate its push, to penetrate the waves to enter in the deep

The boys: We could sign to drive a ship, to sail a ship to sea. We could live off the wind, off the mists and breeze (repeat)

The birds: You could rise above your mighty mast, to lunge and plunge within the depths, to concentrate its push, to penetrate the waves to enter in the deep

Ruby and Dick: Any other day this year


DRAWER OF KNIVES
Dick sometimes goes to the bar with the boys after work. They drink beer and cuss and all that, just like they did in college. The birds tell the men how it really is. The men don't typically give a good goddamn.

The boys: If it's still sunny tomorrow, we'll stay inside and fuck all day. You think spanking hurts the children, well, to hell with 'em all, if it's going to rain. One shoe full of baby shit, aspirins thrown all over the floor. Thank Satan for the laundry, bless the companies, god bless the stores. Who has heard a discouraging word that has not put the men to work. Who has heard a discouraging word, that could not drive the women out to go shopping tomorrow, we'll lose some weight and buy a dress. You think cursing hurts the children, they can frick themselves, and fudge their moms. A brand new baby sitter, a training bra falls from her bag. I keep one in the pantry, to beat the dog on sunny days. Who has heard a discouraging word, which has not put the men to work? And who has heard a discouraging word, that could not make the cowards comply to follow, wallowing?

The birds: The drawer of knives forgives no lies until we thrust our hands inside. It's just the threat, just the bet that makes our fingers bleed.

The boys:Ho ho ho. And if you're still horny tomorrow, I'll practice with my prying tongue. You'd think jokes insult the women, we'll slow it down so they understand. A big pink fishing pole, to bait and switch the teenage lust that grows bigger and better as my hair turns to gray. Who has heard a discouraging word, which has not put the men to work? Who has heard a discouraging word, which could not make the cowards comply to follow, lovingly?

The birds: The drawer of knives forgives no lies until we thrust our hands inside. It's just the threat, just the bet that makes our fingers bleed

The boys:Ho ho ho


EVERYTHING SEEMS CLEAR
In the morning, Ruby drives Dick to work. Dick doesn't feel hung over or anything. Actually, everything seems pretty good. After all, he's got a decent job, most of his bills are paid…Ruby certainly is a great woman. Maybe they'll get married some time. Being an adult isn't so tough. You just have stay cool.

Ruby: I'm thinking for the first time, so semantics might be rough, that I exist within a sphere of acceptance and trust. This environment is cognizant of behavioral act and plan: the integral infrastruct of heart, mind, hand and land. I will sew every seed that falls, and I wish I had the skills, the patience and the luck, and I wish I had the balls to say "so what?"

Dick: But I'm thinking for the first time that I nourish said ellipse, the acceptance and the trust stem from my tongue and my lips. The eloquence of enlightenment, it streams a heavy hue. The hue that hallows who and how…

Passerby: how?

Dick: Shit, I'll figure it out. I will sew every seed that falls, and I wish I had the skills, the patients and the luck, and I wish I had a buck to buy a beer. But I'm thinking for the first time that beers balms my belly well, the acceptance and the trust flow fine, far from my boozy smell.

Both: I will sew every seed that falls and I wish I had the skills, the patience and the luck and I wish I had the guts…

Dick: …to blow myself.

Ruby: Dick!


THE DREAMS OF BURIED CHILDREN
Dick works late. He works late often, as that is what is expected of him. He decides to walk home from work, which is in Harvard Square. It is a decent walk, but the night seems strange and refreshing. Dick thought this morning that everything seemed pretty good. Yes, sir. Pretty good, indeed. After all, its not like he's starving or dead or anything.

Dick: In the dreams of buried children there are no pleasant versions of bed time stories. In the screams of the missing you never here them bitching about air conditioning. When I button my collar, to make another dollar I worry, about my story. I don't know the first thing about reengineering the query, I don't see how the piece starts to fit in style that I wrote. It's the dream that I meant to live. In the poems of the lonely there are no lines of posey, or love of humans. In the minds of hungry dogs there are no cats or balls, there's nothing at all. When I kick about town, drinking all the while I'm sorry, I'm surly, and the wake that I make, this enthusiasm I fake is a sad song, a bad one that hangs in my throat, and it sticks between my toes and I guess, its the best I'll steal.

When the night turns in on itself, when my head begins to ache, I forget that its only June, I forget that it's only July. When my stomach hurts in my bed, when my boss seems down on my work and the wisdom runs from the news of the sheets that they never read. When the night turns in on itself, It's nice that I've maintained my health. I check that my shoes are tied, tell my "wife" that we should go out. Then the night turns into a pup, and the dawn turns into a child and I can take it, another bullet, another punch to my jaw and shine. In the dreams of buried children there are no dreams at all, unless they were buried alive, and if they happen to survive, then the of dreams of buried children oft be visions of thick, black sky.


SHE MADE A SIMILE (TO EXPLAIN TO THE DRUNKS IT WAS TIME TO LEAVE)
Dick came home and told Ruby that they should go out for some fun. They went to a party with lots of other young professionals. Dick remembered all the parties he went to when he was in his early twenties, before he had to work so damn hard. They'd all drink too much and talk about the cool stuff they were going to accomplish when they got older. Now they just talk about the boring stuff they're doing now. Dick, unlike many of his new peers, sometimes still drinks too much.

Ruby: I'll take your wine glass, you drunken boob. Give me your hand. Extend it out further, no, empty your hands. Now go get your coat, from the closet Open your mouth, stupid, and try to slobber "see ya" to all your worthless friends at this ridiculous event. We got to get the keys, babe, and drive you home. We got to get some sleep, baby, for you now. We've had all our laughs for the night. He'll be better in a little while. I'm so sorry, he acts like a child...

Dick: She made a metaphor to explain to the drunks why it's better to leave, to explain it to me. She made a metaphor in hopes I could see, where I spent my maturity back in my early-to-mid twenties.

Ruby: You drove the car home, I don't think you even saw the road. You were oblivious to the traffic, and, dammit, I'm surprised we made it home and now you want me, repeatedly, to solve all of my regrets, immediately, and I'll tell you one thing, babe, I don't bend that easy, queasy, baby doll. Ooh. Why do I fix the problems that you make. You know, possession of the couch becomes a night without a bed. I have to lay down and get some sleep. I'll be better in a little while. It saddens me, that you act like a child

Dick: She made a metaphor to explain to myself why I shouldn't go out, like this and act like an ass. She made a metaphor to explain how its right to be in a fight, when your all drunk stinking late. Oh, boy!

Ruby: Swallow the years that you want to squander. I'll give you time, I'll buy you time. Swallow the shift that you endanger, because It's not mine, No, it's not mine. Spit your spite, and abandon your anger and utilize your new devices

Both: Which breaks the standards, but obeys our boundaries, then demystifies the uncertainty of legacy meaning when we…

Dick: Throw the gauntlet down, and challenge the world, to fast against this horrid vice, to live a little like Christ, right, and abandon the stuff that made us men among men. I'll be better in a little while. I'm so sorry I act like a child

Ruby: You made a metaphor to explain why your tight, to explain tonight what I always think you're always like, Dick.

Dick: She made a metaphor to explain to this drunk why its better to leave then be a little dumb-ass kid. Right, Ruby?

Ruby: Actually, It was an analogy. Dumb-ass.


DEMYSTIFIED, DISENCHANTED, BUT STILL STIRRING DELUSIONAL (I'M BIGGER THAN ATMOSPHERIC PRESSURE; LARGER THAN WEATHER COULD BE)
Dick has to sleep on the couch. As Ruby falls asleep in the wide, empty bed, she has a moment of clarity. But it's a sleepy clarity. A dreamy sort of unclear clarity.

Ruby: Demystified, disenchanted. I leverage adaptive complexity. Demystified, disenchanted but I'm still stirring delusional. I'm bigger than atmospheric pressure; I'm larger than weather could be.


MOM'S FAVORITE BUM
In the morning, Ruby heads off to work without Dick. Dick doesn't feel so hot. Out the window, Dick can see a bum in the bus stop across the street sleeping with a blanket over her head, like a little tent. Ruby had thrown that old blanket away months ago, one that Dick's family had used for years. When Dick's mother heard about this, she felt oddly elated and connected. Since then, whenever she came to visit Dick and Ruby's apartment, she always gave her "favorite bum" a twenty. Big bucks for a bum. Dick decides not to go to work today.

Dick: Mom's favorite bum isn't really me who can not forget all the shit, I've practiced, cherished, tried to sell a bit. The money spent is not the half of it. I'm living large, all charged to my card. Look at me, I'm writing crap that bores the business, keying in a homo-erotic play. I'm the Whiz kid commando. I brandished diarrhea's name.

Men on the street: I recruited twenty angels, a potato-man and a bag of fleas. I riddled on and rattled off a thousand worlds, each made of cheese.

A Telemarketer: I tickled and tattled tinder-sticks, and exemplary pornography

Dick: World of lies, I'm not the bad-ass nigger you conceive. I'm so sorry, I bet you thought I was tough as trucks. Casual day doesn't make me dope. I'm a fat white freak who overeats. I could lose the starch within my clothes, all the tantrums that I throw, all the excuses that I stole, to relive the parade. All the trouble that I make to believe the dreams I fake. And the stumbles are as intense as a bum's own charade. Mom's favorite bum is a drunk who can not conceive all of us, running like we can't control our feet. Paying bills don't make me smart. I think I'll stay home today. Instead of making decks and checks and strategy, implementation plans for clowns to play out. I'm the pride of the nation, brandished diarrhea's name.

Men on the street: I've opened up a shooting range, here come some chums numb from fun and from the sun, comes some bums, dumb as crumbs and dumb they hum

Salesman: I've piloted vehicular waste, saddled on a chariot of shit

Dick: Come and pay, the cover charge to stop and watch me piss on my wrists, trying to wash my hands of all of this. The salary doesn't make me intense. I'm getting bored the more I score. If I could lose the belt around my waist, let my pants fall away. Back the comb from my hair till I'm drunk from the mess. And I'll crowd around myself. I will board up my house. I will try and hide in bed till I escape the profane.

Jeff Till: Ok!

Dick: I burglarize. I confuse distress with success. Respect detects, better let her get a better letter setter for her pains. The failure crops an upsetting jig. I'm so sick of all of this, so sick of all this shit. I could stop the foal from playing, men from working every moment, so fucking important that its shameful and every second is another second built upon the failure: money, god the money sings a pretty song, can make any man long for the seduction of its taste, oh it makes a man feel strong. It makes a man belong. It makes a man feel strong. It makes a man feel strong. When he crawls up to the stage with all the money that he's made, he will throw it all away, feels his blood begin to drain. As he begs the music's love. As he shred's his business clothes. As he grows his hair out long in hopes that it means more than it means. To the hours that he sold and all the pennies that he holds. He will toast them all good night as he flushes the sight of the monster that he made and the years that he spent, chasing crowds unto their death, hoping to go home some time. When mother's stoned she gives away all the money that's she's made to a drunkard in a cage who forgets she's sound, and found enough, to make it home without throwing up


AMERICA'S LEAR
When Ruby comes home from work, Dick isn't home, his briefcase is where he had left it the day before, and there is eight empty beer bottles in the garbage. She doesn't feel like eating dinner. She has a glass of wine, and then another. Two bottles later, Dick still isn't home, and Ruby begins to feel afraid. Not because she's alone tonight, but because she suddenly feels like she's been alone for long time. She stays up late to watch an old film adaptation of Arthur Miller's "Death of a Salesman" on the television.

Ruby: He tries to save me, from his lonely cascade of tired excuses. Out of harm's way, you'd think he was something more, like America's Lear. America's Lear. But nothing that bad has happened so far, nothing that bad has happened so far. But nothing that bad has happened so far. Nothing. Nothing. He makes my heart die from his sorry array of trite excuses, thrown in harm's way;b you'd guess he was growing near to America's Lear. America's Lear. Nothing that bad has happened so far, so nothing could scare us into a fix. Nothing to rash should be our recourse, so nobody stumble around the facts, cause something sad to drive down…One false move, one false start, one ill-advised decision makes us trip. One wrong move, one wrong word, one mis-step, one mistake made with haste, tragedy in the makes found.


FAILURE FOR DUMMIES
The next morning, Ruby finds that Dick has slept on the couch again. He must of came in after she had went to bed. He must of, right? There is a broken glass in the kitchen. Her head is pounding. She kisses him on the forehead and leaves for work. She'd like to stay home, but you can't call into work just because you feel afraid, because you feel like something bad has happened and just can't remember it, or don't want to remember it. After all, what would happen if people in Cambridge couldn't paint their own pots for a day?

Dick: Wait here. Don't move. I can will myself sick. Wait here. Don't move. I can will myself dead. Because I don't want to go to work today. I don't want to leave my bed today, but cry for lovers, and cry for heroes. Don't shed a tear for cheaters, a tear for failures. A shrug for whiners. A damn for liars. I'll soak my pillow and I'll wake up and dread, a mile means nothing, lady, provided you got legs. Wait here. Don't move. I can will myself sick because I don't want to go to work today. I don't want leave my bed today. But cry for lovers, and cry for heroes. Don't shed a tear for cheaters. A tear for failures. A shrug for whiners. A damn for liars. I don't want go. Oh no. Damn.


AMERICA'S LEAR (reprise)


BLACK CLOUD OVER CHARLESTOWN
Dick wakes up around noon. He surveys the kitchen, noting the broken glass and the empty wine bottles. He removes a steno pad and a pen from his briefcase, which promptly ends up in the garbage with the beer empties that started him on his pillage the day before. He pulls out his suitcase, still packed from the last business trip. Before he leaves, he writes a note to Ruby:

Dick: All of my anxiety, all of my distress couldn't save the ball game, and it couldn't be explained. All of my rivalry, all of my complaints, drive me from the city walls, and take me to the sea. Like your father knew, I was driven to abuse you. All my panic, all my pain could not be contained within me. All of my anxiety, all of my duress diminishes my appetite, prevents me getting rest. Threatens my security, enrages my detest for working mothers everywhere who still come up with rent. Like your father knew, I was driven to abuse you. Hiding from the hordes, running from these stricken Charlestown yards. I'm not smart enough to parse my fear. Just afraid I'm going to fail this year. I'm not afraid to shut you up. I dread the black clouds hanging again, over my shoulders, dropping the gloom on my head. I'm not smart enough to not be scared. Can't care enough to cherish the loads of shared burdens that men should bare I shake the black clouds hanging again, over my shoulder, dropping the gloom, love. All of my anxiety, all of my distress don't add up to anything that matches your disgust all of my notoriety has taken second chair to the crimes of my weakness, and to the crimes we share. Like your father knew, I was driven to abuse you. Hiding from the hordes, running from these stricken Charlestown yards now. I'm not smart enough to parse my fear. Just afraid I'm going to fail this year. I'm not afraid to shut you up. I dread the black clouds hanging again, over my shoulders, dropping the gloom on my heart. I'm not smart enough to not be scared. Can't care enough to cherish the loads of shared burdens that men should bare. I shake the black clouds hanging again, over my shoulder, dropping the gloom, love. Bed time seems like a crime, I'm sure, alone with the dogs. I guess its bye-bye.


THE GRAIN OF DEITY IN WOMAN
Ruby comes home from work early. "Fuck the pots" she thinks. The note Dick had left didn't make much sense, but the message was clear enough. Simple enough to give her another moment of clarity.

Ruby: If I make love in the morning I can sleep in later than I could when I wake up to depression, when sleeping in is what I should try to achieve, to finally shut me up. The black clouds keep on hanging strong over my Charlestown walls, and they don't care if people leave, and they don't care that I'm still here sweeping the shards, of the glass you broke last night. Before you cried, and left the house. Before you called my name. Before you said "I'm going home" and home was never here, you know, with me. That glass you smashed was full of me, and me is splashed on the floor. I lift the shards, and dread the day, I'll wake up and persevere the stinging tears that fuel my fears. The grain of deity in woman saves the best in me. The grain of deity in woman saves my sanity. I'll wake up in the morning and I can't lie stiller than I could when I finished a pinot noir and started in with a bottle more, in trying to sedate, in efforts to shut me up. Before that glass was filled with me, It was filled with empty blame. Before that glass was filled with blame, someone threw it on the floor. The grain of deity in woman saves the best in me. The grain of deity in woman saves my sanity


BEAUTIFUL LIKE ME
Dick drove and drove until he was in the town where he grew up. A nice town in Maine by the sea, where people didn't seem to do much. He didn't think about the work he left behind, nor the woman he left working at the pottery shop. The ocean presented itself to Dick, and Dick thought about getting a boat and floating among the waves forever and ever.

Ruby: Here is the hand that grabs you. Here is mouth that hungers. Here is the skin exposed. Here is the fear that strikes you

Dick: I want to raise the sales up, smell the sea like sailors do. I want to screw this stale, pale scene where I get what I deserve. I want to catch a mermaid, exploit her like the visionaries do. I want to screw this stale, pale scene where I get what I deserve. One knock of champagne, dear, to flush the New Year in. They sold me furniture, they sold me neckties to wear, to wrap, to string around my neck. They sold me furniture, they'd sell me anything. They sold me furniture, they'd sell me anything.

Ruby: Here are the arms supporting. Here are the eyes that see through. Here is the hope that's bending. Here is the fear that strikes you

Dick: I want to drop the anchor. Command the crew like captains do. I want to screw this stale, pale scene where I get what I deserve

Ruby: Here is the head that reasons. Here is the time that's passing. Here is the hope that's bending. Here is the fear that strikes you.

Dick: One knock of champagne, dear, to flush the New Year in. They sold me furniture, they sold me suitcases to pack, to zip, to drag my shit around. They sold me furniture, they'd sell me anything. They sold me furniture, they'd sell me anything. If you could close your eyes, if you could teach a little hope somewhere, then you could be the one who could come close to being beautiful like me. If they could smell the air, if they could teach a little smarts somehow. Then they could come so close to finally being beautiful like me



The End
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