"Work" as written by and James Christopher/burch Adkins....
If you only once would let me
Only just one time
Then be happy with the consequence
With whatever's gonna happen tonight
Don't think we're not serious
When's it ever not
The love we make is give and it's take
I'm game to play along

All I can say I should say
Can we take a ride?
Get out of this place while we still have time

The best DJs are saving their slowest song for last
When the dance is through it's me and you
Come on, would it really be so bad
The things we think may be the same
But I won't fight for more
It's just not me to wear it on my sleeve
Count on that for sure

All I can say I should have said
Can we take a ride?
Get out of this place while we still have time
You want to take a ride?
Get out of this place while we still have time
We still have time

Can't say I was never wrong
But some blame rests on you
Work and play they're never okay to mix
The way we do

All I can say I should have said
Can we take a ride?
Get out of this place while we still have time
You want to take a ride?
Get out of this place while we still have time
We still have time

Lyrics submitted by _valerie, edited by suzyloo, Skoobasteve24

"Work" as written by Richard E Burch James Christopher Adkins

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

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Work song meanings
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  • +2
    General CommentI love this song.

    It seems like the lyrics on this album actually get quite dark and bitter in places, even when on the surface they might seem like happy songs. This one is a good example.

    I take it that he's trying to convince someone to sleep with him (I don't see how the first verse can mean anything else, I really don't) and it's just a more jaded view of love. It seems like he feels a lot more for the person than he is letting on but he knows it's not mutual. The chorus is about getting out of the club or wherever they are while she's still in the right mood to go along with what he wants, before the night ends and the spell is broken.

    And yeah, "work" doesn't mean a job, and I think that line is referring more to their balance between "work and play", not about the two things in general if you know what I mean. The key point is "to mix the way we do" - it could be okay to mix the two but in this song the narrator is putting in all the work but for the other person it's just a game.

    I think they based the video around highschool because they didn't want to shoot a video about one-night stands and alienate their teenage audience, lol. It's great with JEW how the music can sound so sparkly and happy but when you read into it, the lyrics can get really viscious.
    Silverdewon December 11, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General CommentI think this song is about an undefined, complicated relationship. The idea of "mixing work and play" in the song is sort of a metaphor for the way their relationship is balanced on the thin line between a serious commitment and a casual hookup.

    They're both confused about what they want, but he seems to be falling in love with her, and he suspects she may also have deeper feelings for him ("the things we think might be the same"). He's warning her not to fool herself into thinking that what they have is completely meaningless, because romantic relationships are never that simple ("don't think we're not serious/when's it ever not?"); however, he's not going to push her into a commitment because that's not his style ("it's just not me to wear it on my sleeve"). He just wants her to think about it and start taking the idea of them being together more seriously ("...it's me and you/come on, would it really be so bad?").

    I love the chorus, because throughout the verses he's trying to sort out and deal with this complex emotional dynamic, but with the chorus comes the bittersweet realization that if he actually puts any of this into words it might ruin what's between them ("all I can say I shouldn't say"). So for now he's just going to live in the moment, get away from it all with her and enjoy their time together. Lovely, and very relatable.
    fromadistantsunon March 09, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Commentwell yeah, it sounds like a huge chance.

    like "can we take a ride". almost as if they are about to leave something, someone or someplace. a huge fifty fifty if they will make it or not. but that he loves her and though he doesn't show it, thats just not of his nature to show it but he means it.

    and ect.
    drewtronon October 18, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think he's with a girl who he works with, and they're mixing their relationship and work together. that's what it sounds like to me... or maybe that's just because I have a really strong tendency to date people I work with...
    Phrenchornon November 22, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General Comment"Come on, would it really be so bad"

    huh, hes convincing them? ... hey is anyone else near crying?
    leeechon December 20, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI interpret it to be about he likes this girl, but she isn't really into him so he is trying to convince her about his feelings and how he wants to be with her.. He wants her to take a chance with him..
    James Deanon October 13, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General CommentWords in a song or poem can have any meaning, however YOU interpret it. YOU are giving it meaning, otherwise, it is just a song of meaningless letters that form words that say stuff.

    What I mean by this, is this is why we all have different answers, showing the less experienced posts about sex and the more experienced about something more. This is a great site.

    To me, this song is about life and these relationships that happen to us when we're young. We live to focus on something more, yet our young hearts all get carried away with this ideal of "love".
    But do we want to be serious about it? It's up to us to accept this "love" or not, but in our younger years, it's just going to get in the way of "work", or our goals. The ideal of "love" is a serious thing (I use the word "ideal" as a disclaimer) but if we were wise, we wouldn't fall into that, but instead, have fun.

    Just live! Get out of this town while we still have time! Be spontaneous, play, learn, travel, take risks, have fear, and mostly be happy with whatever you do. There's more to life than being committed while you're young. Just get through all of the little things in life, go out and experience college and your youth, and whenever you're ready, it will happen. Don't grow up to fast and indulge in the play time.

    And you know, maybe it's not even about "love" with a person in particular. Maybe society and how everyone is trying so hard to grow up so fast. To be more complex, maybe "love" can represent an idea; a relationship with a certain situation that would be easier dealt with if saved for later.

    So many interpretations! I'm done though : p
    happyloozer1on October 23, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song is great - and seeing its meaning escape the sheltered teen audience makes it even more fun.

    I absolutely agree with the interpretations that say it's about picking up a girl at a club - I will only add that the reason it's called "Work" is that picking up girls is often referred to as "doing work." Simple as that.


    Just because they're an emo band doesn't mean they can't have a few songs about meaningless sex. I love it!
    MabeRuthon October 05, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General CommentThis is in my opinion the best song on the album!!

    Because it is fairly simple, but really reminds me of sweetness, hence the> "oh oh, oh oh oh
    oh oh, oh "
    Link64on September 22, 2004   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti agree...my favorite song off the new album. the background vocals are so pretty. there's just something about this song that i really dig.
    athotmaildotcomon September 22, 2004   Link

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