Thursday, December 16, 2010

That joke isn't funny any more

This sad, sad little thang is at Pennsylvania and Chippewa. Despite the freezing temps, I pulled over and took a picture. And this unhappy, depressing Smiths song went through my head.

A song about parking on the side of the road and laughing at people (well, their houses). A bad mansard CLOSE TO HOME (this house is a few miles from my own; I think this was in Marine Villa).

I don't think Morrissey was thinking about bad mansards when he and Johnny Marr wrote That Joke, but I still felt slightly ashamed taking this picture because this little guy is in such bad shape.

park the car at the side of the road
you should know, time's tide will smother you
and I will too
when you laugh about people who feel so very lonely
their only desire is to die
well, I'm afraid it doesn't make me smile
I wish I could laugh

but that joke isn't funny anymore
it's too close to home
and it's too near the bone
it's too close to home
and it's too near the bone

So there you have it. A mansard that tore at my heart and made me feel shameful. A house that is so very Smiths-y. South City St. Louis is quite far away from Morrissey's hometown of Manchester, England, but somehow I can imagine him and this house understanding each other.

an aside: I did see a solo Morrissey perform at the Orpheum in 1998 (guessing on date). He was pissed at the venue and even madder when all people wanted to hear was Smiths songs. He performed for 40 minutes, told the audience St. Louis sucked and stormed off the stage. And folks thought it was still awesome. After we left, my husband got drunk sick in the St. Charles alley at 11st Street. As he puked, he reminisced about how much the Smiths had meant to him as a younger man.

1 comment:

  1. It would be easier to laugh at it if it had something to live for. I agree.