"Fake Plastic Trees" as written by and Thomas Edward/o'brien Yorke....
Her green plastic watering can for
her fake Chinese rubber plant
In the fake plastic earth

What she bought from a rubber man
In a town full of rubber bands
to get rid of itself

It wears her out, it wears her out
It wears her out, it wears her out

She lives with a broken man
A cracked polystyreneman
Who just crumbles and burns

He used to do surgery
For girls in the eighties
But gravity always wins

And it wears him out, it wears him out
It wears him out, it wears him

She Looks like the real thing
She tastes like the real thing
My fake plastic love

But I can't help the feeling
I could blow through the ceiling
If I just turn and run

And it wears me out, it wears me out
It wears me out, it wears me out

If i could be who you wanted
If i could be who you wanted all the time, all the time


Lyrics submitted by piesupreme, edited by Dennis527, Radiohead123, fathousefly, JohnTheSavage1, shawn10418

"Fake Plastic Trees" as written by Thomas Edward/o'brien Yorke

Lyrics © Warner/Chappell Music, Inc.

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Fake Plastic Trees song meanings
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  • +28
    General CommentI think it's about wanting something you can't have, but even that thing you desire so much isn't what you need. "She tastes like the real thing." in a world full of fakeness, he wants desperatly to believe that this one is "the real thing." He's willing to be fake himself. Have you ever seen the shel silverstein poem about the woodpecker and the rubber tree? it just keeps pecking anyway. it's absolute desperation.
    ugly-girlon February 08, 2002   Link
  • +25
    General CommentCome on we've all been there right? In our fake plastic love? You know? That person that you knew deep deep down would never work out, but you thought they were beautiful or special, and thereby you were being fake pretending to be something you were not with that person.

    Trying to make that person happy by being fake. It wears you out. Somehow though you keep hanging on for along time because he or she tastes and looks like the real thing....you think if this relationship ends you might blow through the ceiling; you can't help the feelings you still have for the person...but the relationship wears you out and you are living on borrowed time as you know in the long run it could never work...it's fake and plastic.
    adnon May 15, 2012   Link
  • +16
    General CommentThere's something so piercing about this song and its utter sense of hopelessness, yet it ultimately makes it so comforting
    MercurySmileon January 08, 2002   Link
  • +16
    MemoryAnd it wears me out, it wears me out
    It wears me out, it wears me out

    If i could be who you wanted
    If i could be who you wanted all the time, all the time

    I played this song while I was contemplating suicide. I was (still) facing a lot of heartache: my asperger's is a significant obstacle to my social life, my dad physically and verbally abuses me, and the women i love are nice but are shallow, materialistic and don't love me back. By august 26, these things wore me out and i finally tried to kill myself because i felt like no one will ever love me enough to stop hurting me like my dad or love me for who i am. If i could be who she wanted me to be, i feel that women would finally accept me. this shallowness of our society just destroys good hearted people who may not be gorgeous but have a lot to offer. this song is easily one of my favorite songs but it is also one of the saddest songs for this reason.
    buggy1984on October 18, 2012   Link
  • +14
    My InterpretationThere are 3 stories: a woman wrapped in fake happiness, a man creating fake realities and who is eventually owned by it, and the speaker's own love.

    For me the first two serve as a backdrop for the third story. The third story is actually where the music picks up. Simliar to what has been posted, it's about loving someone so much that you are forced to be someone you are not. The song laments on how difficult it is, but he has no choice. Love makes you do crazy stuff. It makes you endure things you don't want to endure.

    But it's wearing him out.

    How it ends is really up to you.
    migmolon September 08, 2012   Link
  • +11
    General CommentWow, great and sad song, Thom is a genius...

    this song quite describes my life right now ):

    In a world that people and feelings are shallow and fake, I found a different and sensitive girl, a girl who sees the things as I do...and soon i was madly in love with her

    "She looks like the real thing
    She tastes like the real thing"

    And yeah, after a long time gathering courage, and that feeling burning me inside, i told her how much i love her, how much i care and want to stay with her...

    but she just don't care about me and my feelings. I don't make any difference in her life...

    "It wears me out"...

    Even thought, i still love her, but i can't do anything about it, she doesn't want me...

    "If I could be who you wanted all the time"

    shit, i want you so much.
    can't stop crying listening to this :'(
    cyanideloveon April 24, 2011   Link
  • +6
    General CommentHe's talking about the American lifestyle. We don't care about how something really is, as long as it looks good and gives a good impression to those whose opinions mean something to us. The girl married the guy, because her family would be happy she married a successful guy who probably did plastic surgery which is faker than fake. Everyone is just living in a house of cards, no one knows who anyone really is anymore because society dictates what we should be.

    apk1550on January 15, 2010   Link
  • +6
    General CommentTo me this song is all about artificial societal conformity. The goal to be what the world deems is 'perfect' is a constant challenge because of aging and 'gravity' as mentioned in the song. It speaks of a man who was a plastic surgeon who once thought looks were everything, that's where he first fell in love and that's where his money came from, but eventually he realized that there is no authenticity in pretending to be something else. The perpetual struggle to remain perfect actually causes imperfection, and in conclusion, 'it wore him out', like it wears all of us out. Perfection is nonexistent, and we're all living in a fake plastic world trying to be something we're not.
    Angalieneon February 18, 2013   Link
  • +4
    General CommentMy take. This is a song about a woman who married a rich plastic surgeon and had the perfect live living in the suburbs. Years later, neither were happy. He was a depressed plastic surgeon and she realized the material things didn't make her happy anymore. She was stuck in the the suburbs acting like she was happy with her fake smile, fake watering can, watering her flowers, which she didn't give a shit about, while here she still lived with her miserable, depressed husband. WOuld make a rather good fictional book.
    jtwtechon June 21, 2012   Link
  • +3
    General Commentthis is my favorite song... whenever i cant sleep, i put on this song and im out like a light. his voice is just so soothing, ya know? i think this song is about how everything in the world is so corrupt and... fake? even the trees... and its like not even love can be real anymore..
    erasethesunon June 16, 2002   Link

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