"Short Skirt/Long Jacket" as written by and John Mccrea....
I want a girl with a mind like a diamond
I want a girl who knows what's best
I want a girl with shoes that cut
And eyes that burn like cigarettes

I want a girl with the right allocations
Who's fast, thorough, and sharp as a tack
She's playing with her jewelry
She's putting up her hair
She's touring the facilities
And picking up slack
I want a girl with a short skirt and a long jacket.

I want a girl who gets up early
I want a girl who stays up late
I want a girl with uninterrupted prosperity
Who uses a machete, to cut through red tape

With fingernails that shine like justice
And a voice that is dark like tinted glass
She is fast, thorough, and sharp as a tack
She's touring the facilities and picking up slack
I want a girl with a short skirt and a long, long jacket

I want a girl with a smooth liquidation
I want a girl with good dividends
At City Bank we will meet accidentally
We'll start to talk when she borrows my pen

She wants a car with a cup holder armrest
She wants a car that will get her there
She's changing her name
From Kitty to Karen
She's trading her MG for a white Chrysler LeBaron
I want a girl with a short skirt and a long jacket


Lyrics submitted by shut, edited by Zorro3

"Short Skirt/Long Jacket" as written by John Mccrea

Lyrics © Stamen Music

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Short Skirt/Long Jacket song meanings
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103 Comments

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  • +13
    General CommentI've always thought this song was satirizing corporate culture and the American lifestyle, and making a point of how they can suck the fun out of people.

    The girl in the song is "changing her name from Kitty to Karen" (presumably because "Karen" is more conservative and professional-sounding) and trading in her European sports car for a white, American model with little character (but with cup holders for her morning commute!). Her life seems to be focused entirely on her career ("touring the facility and picking up slack", working long hours, dealing with red tape, and managing her finances).

    Notice how her personality is never even mentioned in the song? The girl has "a mind like a diamond", "uninterrupted prosperity", jewelry, and shiny nails, but McCrea never mentions what she's like as a person. I think he's making the point that people tend to focus very heavily on others' monetary success, but they tend to forget things like, say...what they're actually like as people.

    This song obviously relies very heavily on irony. It's pretty clear to me that he's using it to make a point; he doesn't actually want a girl who spends all her time working. Cake are known for their hatred of commercialism and corporate bloat, so it would be very out of character for them to idealize such a conservative and money-focused businessperson.
    quason November 07, 2005   Link
  • +6
    My InterpretationThis song is not about a prostitute. It can be summed up by the title "short skirt/long jacket." The long jacket implies her prudential nature that the short skirt identifies it as being subjective. In other words a girl who is both 'sexy' and has her head on right.
    strategoson February 03, 2013   Link
  • +4
    General CommentThis song seems to be about the new "independent 21st century woman" image that the media seems to be pushing these days, who can somehow perfectly balance her high paying job with her personal life. It seems like John McCrea's being sarcastic and may not really want a girl like that.
    Wrapidon June 21, 2004   Link
  • +2
    Song MeaningThis song is actually about how trivial the whole mate-seeking process is. "I want a girl who gets up early, I want a girl who stays out late." That is him saying he can't make up his mind and its all arbitrary.
    idavidblackon April 21, 2009   Link
  • +2
    General Commentshort skirt, long jacket...almost like the saying, "good girls are bad girls who don't get caught. I interpret this as a girl with a wild side, not a wild girl. A girl who is morally fit and independent in terms of getting things done and doing what she wants. A girl with a long jacket over a short skirt...he is the only one that would be able to see here with the jacket off...and getting down to it, that's what the song is saying. He wants a good girl with a wild side.

    Wordy, but i got my point across.
    annablueskieson April 08, 2010   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThis song is simply about wanting a woman who is both a "girl" and a "lady," who is sexy and professional at the same time.
    Alice_in_Soundweezeron February 09, 2016   Link
  • +1
    General Commenti think it more about a girl with 2 sides. stays up late, gets up early (wouldnt that be perfect) short skirt/long jacket. being diverse in situations and adapting into the mood.
    nrocon July 30, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think that he wants a woman that does not exist, thats too good to be true. Some of her traits that he wants are contridictary she is pretty daring by wearing the short skirt, but still is conservative enough to wear the long jacket

    I want a girl
    Who gets up early
    I want a girl
    Who stays up late

    not that this scenario is impossible but it is less likley that a person will keep this up for too long. i hope that i maid my point, i'm a little tired right now :D

    CAKE RULES!
    MorningStaron September 05, 2002   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI heard it's about a prostitute
    froderickon June 18, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI think McCrea is messing with us. :P

    People seem to think that he's talking about some sort of awesome, unattainable dream chick, but I doubt that. I think McCrea is singing about the maturing tastes of a man in his late twenties or so-- a girl who's hot, yes, but also reserved and responsible. "Putting up her hair" denotes that, as often a wilder girl would let her hair flow freely.

    The machete sounds free-spirited enough, but McCrea uses the analogy (quite cleverly) to describe efficiency. She uses the machete to cut through red tape. In other words, she finishes her work quickly and effortlessly with style.

    "Changing her name from Kitty to Karen" sounds like she would also just be entering the life of a responsible adult. The identity McCrea assumes isn't looking for a cougar-- just a girl who's maturing at the same rate he is. A girl who's tired of hookups and partying and wants to live like an adult. I saw "yuppie" a while back, that's a pretty good word to describe these people. And I definitely don't think it's irony or sarcasm or satire or anything like that.
    Fritzyon March 02, 2009   Link

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