I always dressed for success
But success it never comes
And I'm the only one who laughs
At your jokes when they are so bad
And your jokes are always bad
But they're not as bad as this

Come join us in a prayer
We'll be waiting, waiting where
Everything's ending here

And all the sterile striking
It defends an empty dock you cast away
And rain upon the forehead
Where the mist's for hire if it's just too clear
Let's spend our last quarter stance randomly
Go down to the outlet once again

Painted portraits of minions and slaves
Crotch mavens and one-night plays
Are they the only ones who laugh?
At the jokes when they are so bad
And the jokes they're always bad
But they're not as bad as this

Come join us in a prayer
We'll be waiting, waiting where
Everything's ending here

And all the Spanish candles
They sold away sold have gone away to this
And a run-on piece of mountain
Trembles, shivers, runs down the freeway
I guess she spent her last quarter randomly
We guess, a guess is the best I'll do

Last time, last time is the best time I spent

Lyrics submitted by vCheerUpEmoKidv, edited by Discordman, amoeba215

Here Lyrics as written by Stephen Joseph Malkmus Scott Kannberg

Lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd., WORDS & MUSIC A DIV OF BIG DEAL MUSIC LLC

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Here song meanings
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  • +5
    Song MeaningVery clever lyrics. The lyrics themselves hint at the inherent ambiguity in interpreting speech and action. The final line:

    "We guess a guess is the best I'll do, I'll do" is a philosophical statement by the band regarding the inherent difficult of declaring absolute truths. So to say with certainty what the song is about is a risky thing to do! Nevertheless HERE goes:

    "I was dressed for success" is about the difference between appearance and reality. For example you may be wearing an expensive suit and look like you are ready to bestride the world like a colossus, but that's just not enough. You need to have some substance. Or perhaps the line refers to dressing up for a Sunday church service - in order to receive something that you think you deserve (ie. absolution and forgiveness). I think the latter is more likely as the chorus says "come join us in our prayer...we'll be waiting waiting there...everything's ending here".

    This brings us to the chorus and the heart of the song - which is religion and death and reflecting on the meaning of life as death approaches. I'll come to this in detail in a future post.

    Kiladion December 08, 2011   Link
  • +3
    General Commenthaha, yep

    id run S&E parallel with doolittle and surfer rosa actually
    uncletommyon March 31, 2003   Link
  • +3
    General Commentshit, i was looking for songmeanings.net but i guess i was somehow redirected to pretentious-douchebags-compare-bands-that-sound-nothing-alike.net
    man i hate it when that happens.
    jigsawyouthon November 09, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General CommentThis song is amazing, best pavement song.
    This was my official going away to college song.

    ...everything's ending here.......
    gouge_awayon April 17, 2004   Link
  • +2
    General CommentHere is the defining song of the 90's. It describes the futility of all the gen xers..."I was dressed for success but success it never comes". fucking righteous.

    And Pavement OWNS, OWNS the Pixies.
    What I See Is Meon November 09, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Commentyeah actually its called DOOlittle.
    ruxxellon March 08, 2003   Link
  • +1
    General CommentI don't know what it's about, but it gives off this kind of warm yet cold feeling, like, everything is wrong, but okay. I get the feeling he is singing about some girl who is alone, and tells bad jokes.... Okay, well all I know is that I really like it and play it a lot because it's pretty damn simple and I like making up other lyrics... but I always keep that crotch mavens and one-night plays line. It always makes me feel like happy to be where i am..... the drug-trip ends now...
    myeh_manon April 08, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General CommentFirst verse about how your band has to be a complete "joke" if you want success. "But they're not as bad as this" is mocking the general attitude towards indie bands and how people don't like something unless they hear it on their favourite radio/tv station etc. "Sterile Striking" again on how people are willing to slag off a band without listening to them properly/at all.

    "Painted portraits of minions and slaves". Opinions based on distorted impressions and a lack of interest which see such indie bands as a negligible underclass. Brilliant.

    Musically the progression is kind of like Fake Plastic Trees. Or FPT is like Here, even.
    Maddockon May 27, 2004   Link
  • +1
    General Commentgreat song by pavement, one my favorite
    Thank you Maddock, it makes sense, better!!
    lathyruson May 05, 2006   Link
  • +1
    General CommentEverclear is everything indie music isnt. How many songs can you write with the same three chords about how bad your divorcing parents/father were to you? Or your struggle with drugs?

    And shut up about the Pixies already, Jesus there are other great bands! If Pavement apes anyone its the Fall, but that doesnt take away that Pavement is definitely the greatest indie band of all time, hands down.
    tundradesert81on August 15, 2007   Link

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