All alone by the table of food in my wrinkled suit and my borrowed tie
Only thinking of something to say in the moment after the girl goes by
Everyone else is having fun or else pretending to
I eat another crudite

I quit, I'm done
Cause I don't think it's gonna turn out okay
It's no fair, it's no fun
If every time it's gonna end the same way:
Me: zero, Big bad world: one

At the office we're all having cake cause it's someone's birthday, I don't know who
Get my plate and I'm scanning the room and the only seat is right next to you
I get the nod, the tiny smile that doesn't come with teeth
Maybe you don't know who I am

I quit, I'm done
Cause I don't think 's gonna turn out okay
It's no fair , it's no fun
If every time it's gonna end the same way:
Me: zero, Big bad world: one

Staying in side, lying in bed
Noticing something that's not there
Follow my heart, follow my head
I'll follow anything that might get me somewhere

Catch her eye when she's pouring my coffee and search my head for an opening line
But I see by the look on her face if I keep my mouth shut I'll save some time
What if the best that I can be just isn't good enough?
Isn't it better not to know?

I quit, I'm done
Cause I don't think it's gonna turn out okay
It's no fair, it's no fun
If every time it's gonna end the same way:
Me: zero, Big bad world: one


Lyrics submitted by Ratboy

Big Bad World One song meanings
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7 Comments

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  • +1
    General Commentwulfreigns, "me zero, big bad world one" is a scoreboard reference. not tarzan speak. like "home 12, away 16"
    i draw the meaning that sometimes life is so hard why try, no im not being emo but thats what it seems like hes saying. such as "But I see by the look on her face if I keep my mouth shut I'll save some time" so i might even say its on the line of suicide
    Shikaruon February 17, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General CommentThis one makes me think of My Monkey, in that it takes a real serious message (in this case hopelessness), but explains it with childish language ("I quit, it's no fair, the big bad world is winning"). It goes back and forth from depressing-sounding verses to the chorus where it sounds more like he's just getting frustrated like a kid, or "knocking over the chessboard" so-to-speak.

    For me this makes it one of the few songs that I can listen to when I'm sad, but that can make me feel better. Often listening to sad songs when you're sad yourself just makes it worse, but this one has just that hint of cuteness to it which makes it okay. Makes me feel like I am being childish and that my problems aren't as bad as they seem.
    tailgunneron May 23, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentNote the little play on words/ Tarzan speak in the chorus-- "Me zero, Big Bad World One(Won).
    Wulfreignson October 03, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentI find Coulton has so many songs that people can identify with, this song being one of them. Who hasn't had a tough day and just wanted to give up?
    tailgunneron October 24, 2008   Link
  • 0
    General CommentSo to me it just seems like Jonathan is being existential and a little angst ridden at the same time. The childish diction sets the cuteness and helps to establish a sort of childish view towards existentialism. Thus, in my opinion, this is a cute little song that helps to show how childish existentialism can be.
    JuppppyIVon June 01, 2009   Link
  • 0
    General CommentWhat he means by "Me Zero Bid Bad World One" Is like he's keeping score, luike
    Me: Zero
    Big Bad World: One
    Hsazhekon June 19, 2010   Link
  • 0
    My InterpretationThe protagonist in this song is a wallflower who's anticipation of failure with women is a self-fulfilling prophecy. On minimal evidence he decides to give up and winds up always sleeping alone. Rejection has become a bogeyman he can't face - quite literally he is a quitter, the game of courtship isn't fun, it's filled with trepidation for him (it reminds me of The Smiths lyric of "then a strange fear gripped me and I just couldn't ask").

    The chorus line "Me: Zero, Big Bad World: One" is a double meaning - on one level it's a keeping score one-nil to the Big Bad World, but he's also saying he is a zero, and the Big Bad World won (homophone!) in that it beat him once again.

    Succinctly it describes a situation a lot of young men get themselves into - I know this feeling only too well. What he probably needs to do is get a few actual rejections under his belt so he knows that they're not as world-shattering as he imagines, because while he is avoiding the risk of rejection he's ensuring his own failure. It is a big bad world because it frightens him - it's actually the fear he's defeated by.

    I find this a therapeutic song from that point of view - there has probably been a point in many of the more sensitive males' lives in which they've found themselves in this same vicious cycle, and when you're in it you don't see the absurdity of it, only the tragedy - but listening to the narrator in this song describe his thought process we can see the absurdity and become aware that maybe our own vicious cycle is absurd and how we can correct it.
    Osiranon February 13, 2013   Link

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