I only wanted what everyone wanted
Since bras started burning up ribs in the 60's.
Favors are flying, faces are falling,
All I desire is to never be waiting.
If that's a crime let's commit it.
There's a new crime, sexual suicide.
When our underwire radio tears into their international airwaves
Boredom will Die! Ears will Bleed!
All they desire is to give and to please.
There's a new crime, sexual suicide.
There's a new crime, let's commit it
While we're waiting on the next day, to begin it in the best way.
There's a new crime, sexual suicide.
There's a new crime, let's commit it.
Don't worry, Heather, about forever.
Don't worry about me.

It's a lottery baby, everybody roll the dice
It's a lottery baby, everybody roll the dice

Will we always be like little kids
Running group to group asking who loves me?
Don't know who loves me!
It's pathetic. It's impossible.
Like girls in stilettos,
Like girls in stilettos,
Like girls in stilettos trying to run.

Lyrics submitted by tinylittlewords

"The Lottery" as written by Ernie Parada

Lyrics © Universal Music Publishing Group

Lyrics powered by LyricFind

The Lottery song meanings
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  • +2
    General CommentWanting what everyone wanted SINCE implies she wants what feminists think all women want, equality, and [perhaps] in Emily's sense of it, rock star equality. In the eighties, women burnt their bras but obviously not while they were wearing them, but her imagery of them burning on womens shows how it was more self-destructive than liberating.

    the whole song goes into her personal struggle with sexual identity, with the main term to define it, sexual suicide. i guess it means something like giving up your sexual identity, killing it yourself to blend into a man's world, but it's now a cirme because of the feminist idea of pride. and emily even admits she went through a faze where she cut her hair short and dyed it black because she thought being a girl was a liability, but now she knows better.

    the song goes into how women will one day, from the very bras they burn, surprise the world and make our ears bleed with the wonderful music they produce.

    i don't understand the middle very well, except when she brings up her (assumably) friend Heather, assuring her its okay, its just the Lottery; her gamble in entering the music scene or something.

    and the end... well, the part about stilettos is clear. back into the idea of women, a complete circle. it creates a nice image in my head. and its funny.
    tinylittlewordson October 16, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentWell if Emily said it was a "nostalgia song" then maybe the line when it says

    "When our underwire radio tears into their international airwaves,
    Boredom will die, ears will bleed
    And all they'll desire is to give, and to please..."

    shes talking about music that is completly original and not based on some idealist look at the past. And maybe the begining of the song which is talking about the 60's is refering Decade nostalgia.... peoples longing and having an idealistic look at a certian decade.

    I'm not sure thats just my interpertaion of the song from a nostalgia point of view.
    StephRoxon February 02, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think this song is nostalgic because it speaks of simpler times.
    Before bras burned. Even though it changed things for the better, it was much easier to do and want what everyone else did/wanted.
    Also, i think the lines:
    When our underwire radio tears into their international airwaves,
    Boredom will die, ears will bleed
    And all they'll desire is to give, and to please...

    could be about Emily's music career and how in the past it was so naive and simple- she'd play her music, people would be won over, and all she would do was give her songs and aim to please her audience. Maybe things changed when she was sick of not getting anything back, or maybe she was holding herself back in order to please the audience?
    patquinnchinon November 01, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Commentin the rawside of metric, emily talks about buying lottery tickets being a family thing for her.. she also tells a story about her father sending her a fake lottery ticket say they'd won $50 000, not knowing that the band was in a pretty bad financial crisis.

    i don't know if this anecdote has any relation to this song, but it feels as if it does. where it has that idea of risk and just.. doing it because you have to and why not just *do* it. i have no idea anymore. what am i saying, hahaha..
    joeyjoeyon March 03, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis song has many personal meanings for me that I am not going to get into.. however, I have gotten a lot of insights from these comments. I'm with Joey the most.

    I think "the lottery" is a metaphor for love, sometimes you just throw your dice in not knowing how it's going to work out, and you get disappointed often because how much of a chance is there? And why not just do the act (sex) of there's nothing to lose?

    I'm the type of person who lingers on things that don't work out and.. I just happen to find them the most beautiful. I do wish they would work out, of course.
    cloudgirlon April 13, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think its about the idea of sexualizing your image in order to sell more records.
    "sexual suicide". There's obviously a lot of pressure on women to do this in the music industry, and a lot of women who would not make it unless they did that.

    "Boredom will die, ears will bleed"
    When people finally accept an artist's music regardless of her sex appeal, it will be a revolution of great music around the world.

    She may be telling her friend Heather not to worry about her struggle, that she's going to "roll the dice" and see if she can make it in the industry without caving to that pressure.

    The last verse is about the need to feel loved, and what people will do in order to get that, even if it's the wrong kind of attention. She finds it immature "like little kids", and thinks its an ass-backward way to produce music "pathetic, impossible".
    ebdavidsonon December 03, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti love the feminism references she makes. i think this song has a lot to say about waiting for somebody that's worth it, as opposed to flaunting and selling any and every ounce of sexuality you have in you just to get some attention from a false love.

    i think a lot of females settle for less because they are afraid that they won't find the "perfect one". when she talks to "heather" about forever, i think she's saying that when you are looking for love you can't be worried about things like that, because in the end you never know, and it's all kind of a game of chance that everyone has to play.

    i love the last part of the song where she talks about the desperation that girls go through to find love wherever they can being "pathetic" and "impossible", and much like girls in stilettos, who are painfully and desperately trying.
    sheselectricon March 16, 2010   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI mostly agree with WarholMetricSystem.

    I think the comments about the music industry are interesting, but that's never really been anything I've gotten out of the song.

    I think that to take it a step beyond what WarholMetricSystem is saying, there is a bit of a backlash against the second-wave feminist ideals that they were talking about. More specifically, those second-wave, sex-positive feminist attitudes of women being empowered by sex and having a more stereotypically male view of sex and sexual activity has put pressure on women to have casual sex and make an effort to not desire commitment and long-term relationships. "Sexual suicide" is engaging in this practice. There is pressure to have and want casual sex, and with that comes emotional, and maybe more importantly, physical risks.

    It's a lottery, everyone roll the dice, recognizes that pressure on everyone, male and female, to engage in high-risk activities. Don't worry about forever--don't worry about the risks, and don't dare to want a long-term relationship or a commitment. Those are roles that patriarchy has forced on women, and to want them is to be a bad feminist.

    "Will we always be like little kids . . . asking 'who really loves me? Don't know who loves me'" recognizes that ultimately all human beings are insecure and want to be loved, but we'll always be looking for it, looking for sexual validation from one guy or the next (grove to grove), if we can't admit (because we're too "empowered" to admit) that we do want love. It's pathetic that we've been put in this impossible situation, and it really is like girls in stilettos, trying to run--women trying to be powerful and strong but who will ultimately stumble and fall if they can't recognize that they are humans, people with emotions.
    mytinyvesselson October 28, 2010   Link
  • 0
    General Commenti love the historical reference at the beginning. the "legend of the bra burning" out side of the beauty pageant in the 60s...that's brilliant.
    rmx386on June 06, 2007   Link
  • 0
    General CommentNot to be nitpick-y or anything, but I'm pretty sure it's "girls in stilettos, trying to run." Because that is actually impossible and pathetic.
    underwireradioon September 15, 2007   Link

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