"Obstacle 1" as written by and Paul Banks Carlos Dengler....
I wish I could eat the salt off of your lost faded lips
We can cap the old times make playing only logical harm
We can cap the old lines clay-making that nothing else will change
But she can read, she can read, she can read, she can read, she's bad
Oh, she's bad

It's different now that I'm poor and aging, I'll never see this face again
You go stabbing yourself in the neck

We can find new ways of living make playing only logical harm
And we can top the old times, clay-making that nothing else will change
But she can read, she can read, she can read, she can read, she's bad
Oh, she's bad

It's different now that I'm poor and aging, I'll never see this face again
You go stabbing yourself in the neck It's in the way that she posed

But it's different now that I'm poor and aging, I'll never see this place again
And you go stabbing yourself in the neck It's in the way that she posed

It's in the way that she pulls air
It's in the things that she puts in my head
Her stories are boring and stuff
She's always calling my bluff
She puts the, she puts the weights into my little heart
And she gets in my room and she takes it apart
She puts the weights into my little heart
I said she puts the weights into my little heart

She packs it away

It's in the way that she walks
Her heaven is never enough
She puts the weights in my heart
She puts, oh she puts the weights into my little heart


Lyrics submitted by NewWaveMonkay, edited by TheBronze

"Obstacle 1" as written by Paul Banks Carlos Dengler

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd.,

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Obstacle 1 song meanings
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  • +5
    Song MeaningI think it's about a drowning.

    Here's the story: he knew this girl when they were kids, and kind of had a crush on her when they were teenagers but they're still just friends. One day they go to the beach, alone or with some other friends, it doesn't matter. There are those signs that say it's dangerous to go in the water, because there are rip tides or something. But she's the typical teenage girl trying to impress someone, and she says she'll be fine and goes in anyway. I feel like this song is set a year or two afterwards, when he's remembering her and what happened.

    "I wish I could eat the salt off of your lost faded lips"

    Her lips are salty because she drowned in the ocean, and lost and faded because she'd been gone for so long. I would probably interpret it as saying he wishes he could have her back and got the chance to kiss her.

    "We can cap the old times, make playing only logical harm
    We can cap the old lines, make playing that nothing else will change"

    Cap, sort of like capture, bring things back to when she was alive. He wants to make playing (like they were playing on the beach before she died) only "logical harm" instead of the physical harm it actually brought to her.
    He's just being nostalgic about their friendship now that she's gone and he's wishing nothing had changed.

    "Well she can read, she can read, she can read, she can read, she's bad"

    This is afterwards when everyone is grieving, and they're all angry and saying that "couldn't she read the signs?!" that said not to go in the water because it was dangerous. He's telling them all that yeah, she read it, she was just too "bad" to care and did it anyway.

    "But it's different now that I'm poor and aging
    I'll never see this face again
    You'll go stabbing yourself in the neck"

    He's probably not actually that old, but he's like a young adult (college age or so, they're always poor) and feels depressed, like he's older than he is. He's probably standing on the beach looking back, thinking about how he'll never see her again and how she really did it to herself (not literally stabbing herself in the neck, but it has the same effect -- she's dead now).

    The rest of the song is just his memories of her from when she was still alive.
    "It's in the way that she poses, it's in the things that she puts in my hair
    Her stories are boring and stuff, she's always calling my bluff
    She puts the, she puts the weights in to my little heart and she gets in my room and she takes it apart"
    is probably her memories of her when they were in elementary school. They had kind of a love/hate relationship back then. She puts weight into his heart because she's always made him feel stronger emotions than anyone else can.

    "It's in the way that she walks, her heaven is never enough"
    is about how he started to think of her when they were older and he found himself developing feelings for her, but realized she never thought she was good enough, and feigned confidence so that no one would see she really had self-esteem issues, and maybe that was why she went into the water.

    "She puts the, she puts the weight into my little heart"

    He feels unemotional about most things after the trauma of watching one of his closest friends drown and not being able to do anything about it (this is why his heart is little), but when he's here reliving the moment and their past together the memory of her makes his heart feel weighted.

    It's a really sad song about friendship and death.
    svhkdhon October 31, 2012   Link
  • +4
    General Commentthose lyrics are just so wrong.

    but i believe this song is about a guy loving a girl so much, he doesn't know exactly why he does. everything this girl does, just fascinates him no matter what she does. and she doesn't realize it. and the guy just gets a heavy heart and doesn't know what to do. thats what i think.

    completely awesome song
    def_linuson May 06, 2004   Link
  • +2
    General CommentSHE PASSED AWAY!?!? LOL. Very funny. Anyways, since we all know the actual lyrics, I wont post them. But i will say that Def Linus definitely is on the right path with this song.

    I think that the speaker and the girl are very good friends, and they have had such amazing times together. The problem is that he wants more than friendship, and this frightens her because she is so accustomed to their friendship. I think she fears their friendship would be ruined by making their relationship into a romance. "She can read" i believe means that she can read into the situation, like how things will turn out. She sees it as going bad, he sees is as things can get better "we can cap the old times". She packs it away is her packing her feelings for him away.

    The whole things makes his heart heavy, knowing that she has "killed" the possibility of them being together.

    Just my interpretation. I think it fits well with the lyrics. Any thoughts?
    GoldenXon September 17, 2004   Link
  • +2
    General Comment"Obstacle 1..." I always thought that it was clearly about a woman putting an obstacle in front of herself; namely, her own insecurity.

    I think it's someone he's known for a long time, who wants a career in a creative field, but is very sensitive. She keeps reading small-time reviews of herself, believing them, and denying every good thing he has to say to her. She always assumes he's saying it to make her feel good, or he hasn't had an education in her field, and she gets defensive about anything that doesn't fit the poor image she has of herself. She "knows" he's "lying" or "wrong"; that he just likes her so his opinion doesn't matter because it must be biased. I think everyone's known someone like that.

    In the ends, she packs it in, gives up on her music or her art, leaving him feeling heavy-hearted because no matter how much he tried to get her to see how awesome she was, she defeated his every attempt by simply disbelieving whatever didn't confirm her doubt. It was easier not to try, not to risk disappointment.

    I'm surprised by some of the interpretations on here. Maybe they're right, but I will always see the song this way. I guess the openness of the lyrics is a pleasant thing in any case.
    Wynneon April 04, 2011   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThis is about a relation ship,I dont know why but I imagine this song like a dialog.A boy and a girl sitting on a coach or in a bed...

    The girl tells the boy:

    I wish I could eat the salt off of your lost faded lips
    We can cap the old times, make playing only logical harm
    We can cap the old lines, make playing that nothing else will change

    I think that this line is something that a girl is telling to her boyfriend,she wants to cheerry up,start over again,go backards and to do thing rights.She knows that something is wrong between them.

    Well she can read, she can read, she can read, she can read, she's bad
    She can read, she can read, she can read, she's bad, oh she's bad

    the boy was thinking about the realtionship,he KNOWS that something is going wrong, that is why she "can read his mind"

    But it's different now that I'm poor and aging
    I'll never see this place again
    You'll go stabbing yourself in the neck

    This line is hard,

    Ageing (British English) or aging (American English) is the accumulation of changes in an organism or object over time.[1] Ageing in humans refers to a multidimensional process of physical, psychological, and social change.
    So,I consider that the boy considers that is hard togo back to what it was now because he is constatly channching( in all senses).He thinks:I dont wanna return here anymore(Ill never see this place again), like to an ex -house,and he says to the girl:go stabbing yourself in the neck,like,I'm not going to do this anymore,I'm tired,I'm different,I don't need to be with you now,fuck you!



    It's in the way that she poses
    It's in the things that she puts in my hair
    Her stories are boring and stuff
    She's always calling my bluff
    She puts the, she puts the weights in to my little heart and she gets in my room and she takes it apart
    She puts the weights into my little heart
    I said she puts the weights into my little heart

    Boring and stuff,great line!The girl hasn't change since the begining of the realtionship so he had lost interest for her,we all change in a realtionship and he can see that she is the same person.When you start to get bored of your couple you know that there is no way back.So he have a lot of reasons to leave her but then the boy changes is mind and see why he loves her( or used to),he remeber all those small details about her (things that she put in my hair,like when you play with your boyfriend's hair or something like that),the way that she poses( like she moves, is,attitude),those small details that we love from other person so he has a lot of reasons to stay to ( but all those reasons are based on memories,we sometimes tend to work thing out because we remeber the old times).So he decides to stay with her

    And about the final lines, I think that he finally made up his mind so he left her.Like in the video, the girl who was dancing downs on the floors,she get electrocutated ,I think that like a very -metaphorical image-( hahaha) in his heart she has pass away,she is death and nothing can restore her in life,no more chances.

    And I dont know about the title but I would like to think that this was like a first realthionship story,a first experience.Thats is why obstacle 1,like :First love 1.So, he knows that the relationship was only an obstacle ( one of the many osbtacles that we have to get over in life),he knows that there is something better waiting for him.
    evkgon June 17, 2011   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThe song is about some model who committed suicide, and all of the band members were greatly affected by the story that they read about her death, specifically Paul, so he write a song about it.
    Willionaireon January 22, 2012   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI believe it's about a friendzone type thing, as Goldenx states.
    It fits a lot of the lyrics. It's CERTAINLY not about drowning, lmao!! The logic used in that interpretation was incredibly twisted, no offense. I think that person might just have had an idea and stuck to it, even though the lyrics don't hint that at all.


    "but she can read, she can read, she can read, she's bad, she's bad"

    The boy wants a relationship with his friend who's a girl, but she can read into what that might mean/turn out to be, so she doesn't comply. "she's bad".

    Pretty much all of the lyrics show some sort of infatuation with a girl.

    And the lyrics above suggest that there's some sort of conflict with this, such as unrequited love. Hence, the "friendzone" type thing.

    Also, the title of the song also reinforces that there's a conflict: Obstacle 1.

    There's another song in the album called Obstacle 2, which shows this yearning for love once again, in a similar theme:

    "If you don't trust yourself for at least one minute each day,
    Well you should trust in this, girl, cause loving is coming our way."

    "If you can fix me up we'll go a long way
    If you can fix me up, girl, we'll go a long way."

    i rest my case.
    18skeltoron April 07, 2015   Link
  • +1
    General Commentinterpolny.com/…

    yeah, those arent the complete lyrics, but from what they have up there you can see that these lyrics are wrong

    putting that aside, this song fucking rocks.
    elrqxqron March 03, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General CommentEven though I don't understand the lyrics at all, it sounds great to the ear, and sometimes that's more important than the lyrics.
    NickBush24on November 23, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General Commentthis song is so amazing I couldn't care less about what it means.
    Paul Banks could be doing a fucking Ashlee Simpson cover and it'd still rock
    Alter-Egoon January 18, 2005   Link

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