Interpretation of a Semisonic Song

Closing Time
Closing Time

That Winston Churchill guy really knew what he was talking about. Okay, I suppose this is one of his lesser “important” quotes, considering his role in the history of the world, but still! Important it is! Because not only does his wisdom speak truth about the audacity of leaving a rockin’ party before the good times have to end, but, by omission (and a bit of imagination, no doubt), it also says a lot about leaving right on time. And there’s no need to stress it, because, existentially speaking, the timing is always “right”, regardless of when you hit the door. But, at closing time, no ifs ands or buts, you gots to go.

Love the green.
Open all the doors and let you out into the world

Closing time is actually a gift, sending us out into the open air of reality.  Some may not wish to go, instead wanting to creep backward into the comfort zone of the dimly lit dive bar where we’ve been tossing back shots of cheap well whiskey and taking long drags from our no-name brand cigarettes, as we revel in the sad country songs crooning from the old juke box. We wrap ourselves in our warm security blankets of victimization, turning away from the light flooding into our collective dark hole of discontent. We resist, mostly without understanding the through it takes to get to the other side.

Turn all of the lights on over every boy and every girl.
Turn all of the lights on over every boy and every girl

Until something forces us onward- sometimes a tingle, other times an itch, often a big, blaring French horn, delivered, more often than not, courtesy of the inner bitch who lives like a hermit crab, backed into her own cozy- and crazy, corner of our temporarily dark hearts. Systematically, we go kicking and screaming all the way, rallying against moving on, or at least attempting to get over whatever bullshit is hovering about us at that given space in time. We refuse. We deny. We cease.

One last call for alcohol so finish your whiskey or beer
One last call for alcohol so finish your whiskey or beer

So instead, we revert, pounding one last drink, toking on one more smoke, and relishing in one final hoorah.

You don’t have to go home but you can’t stay here

And then: rock bottom. We’re booted- shoved out into a world, overwhelmingly bright with color and movement and maybe a little too much optimism. And we’re forced to grow up, as it were, to move on, to just fucking deal with it, already. Discomfort ensues and with it, anger often hitches a ride. And, sadly, many of us live here for some length of time.

Time for you to go out to the places you will be from
Time for you to go out to the places you will be from

As symbolic as it can get, we are like a bird leaving the nest- a nest of our own discontent- the cocoon we pulled together from bits of hurt and strands of guilt and twigs of anger, the space we lived in absolutely voluntarily. Hopefully, we’ll rally to the cause of our future- and see that so much of it rests in our own hands. And God-Allah-Flying Spaghetti Monster- willing, we’ll see: It’s time to move on.

This room won't be open until your brothers and sisters come.
This room won’t be open until your brothers or your sisters come.

And all the more reason for it, considering we tend to get stuck in the same room, enacting the same tasks, expressing the same behaviors, and expecting very different results. Instead the comfortable will become uncomfortable, the room cold and emptied of our pasts. Slowly and with effort – inspired or otherwise, we move in a few bean bag chairs and comfy ottomans, exchanging the old ways and habits for the new, and eventually, we’ll invite a whole slew of family over for a big ol’ party.

So gather up your jackets, move it to the exits
So gather up your jackets, move it to the exits

So here you are, getting the boot, and now it’s time to really move forward. Get out, venture on, explore! Let your shit go, quit hiding away in that dank and dusty room, and move the FUCK on so you can come back and redecorate the place with a bit more flair, and a lot more YOU.

Can't remember
I hope you have found a friend

And through it all, the most important person to find as an ally is yourself, bottom line. Because, guess what? You gotta live with you – in all of your past fuck ups and present bullshit. YOU gotta live with YOU.

Every new beginning comes from some other beginning's end
Every new beginning comes from some other beginning’s end

It’s all about beginnings and ends – and by virtue of the previous lyrics, learning something from it all or being destined to relive the same. And since each beginning not only comes from another beginning’s end, but inevitably has its own? They are the same creature, one fused to the other, an Ouroboros eating its own tail. Respect both, learn from all, and have a hell of a time ’cause ain’t none of us gettin’ outta here alive!

Closing Time by SuperSonic

Annnnnd Scene. 

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