I think this place is full of spies
I think they're onto me
Didn't anybody, didn't anybody tell you
Didn't anybody tell you how to gracefully disappear in a room?

I know you put in the hours to keep me in sunglasses, I know
And so and now I'm sorry I missed you
I had a secret meeting in the basement of my brain
It went the dull and wicked ordinary way
It went the dull and wicked ordinary way
And now I'm sorry I missed you
I had a secret meeting in the basement of my brain

I think this place is full of spies
I think I'm ruined
Didn't anybody, didn't anybody tell you
Didn't anybody tell you, this river's full of lost sharks?

I know you put in the hours to keep me in sunglasses, I know
And so and now I'm sorry I missed you
I had a secret meeting in the basement of my brain
It went the dull and wicked ordinary way
It went the dull and wicked ordinary way

And now I'm sorry I missed you
I had a secret meeting in the basement of my brain
And now I'm sorry I missed you
I had a secret meeting in the basement of my brain
It went the dull and wicked ordinary way
It went the dull and wicked ordinary way
It went the dull and wicked ordinary way
It went the dull and wicked ordinary way
It went the dull and wicked ordinary way
It went the dull and wicked ordinary way


Lyrics submitted by countzero

Secret Meeting Lyrics as written by Matthew D. Berninger Aaron B. Dessner

Lyrics © BMG Rights Management

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Secret Meeting song meanings
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36 Comments

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  • +5
    General Comment

    I see this song slightly differently.

    Have you ever gone somewhere and realized that someone that you didn't want or expect to see is there? And then instead of doing the grown-up thing and going over saying hello and dealing with the awkwardness, you simply pretend that you don't see them.

    That's what the song is about to me.

    In the song, I think the person in question is an ex girlfriend or lover. The spies are the people that know he's there. The gracefully disappear part obviously fits this line of interpretation. The sunglasses line is presumably about, how she did everything she could for him but he still decided not to be with her.

    In the chorus, I think he is admitting that he is ashamed and regretful about how he handled the situation but he had a "secret meeting" in the less savory parts of his brain and did the "dull and wicked ordinary" thing. I think the "dull and wicked ordinary way" line actually has two meanings. He is talking about the night in question and the relationship as a whole.

    The rest of the song seems to be different variations of what he already said. The only other parts are the sharks line, which can easy fit my reading of the song, and the Ace/Folding section that I agree is about folding a good hand, or in this case not pursuing a relationship with a good girl.

    Great song by a great band.

    SomethingCleveron October 29, 2008   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    Does anyone know what the guitarists are shouting in the background in the song's second half?

    Butterfly Edgeon May 27, 2006   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    i read an interview where Matt said he would never reveal the words. But the interviewer suggested 'dont draw the ace and fold it' which sounds right to me

    Stoufferon February 12, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    I saw the national the other day and while they were setting up i asked the one guitarist what the other was shouting, and he said its "i'm talking ace." he also said thats not what matt says and has no idea what it is that matt shouting.

    tinerjon May 31, 2007   Link
  • +2
    General Comment

    I'm 100% sure it's "I'm talking ace, but I'm folding".

    not only could it mean adamdwitt's "this is great, but fuck it", but I was thinking of it in terms of card games. Aces are usually good to have in a hand, yeah? but if you fold, then you're out of the game. I guess it goes back to "this is great, but fuck it".

    ohnoodleson January 26, 2008   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    I'm glad to get some input on this question. Trouble is, once someone suggests something, that's what you hear....

    Butterfly Edgeon April 02, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    I thought this might be a song dealing with the pressures of becoming recognised, and also the record industry. He could be talking to the music industry itself - "you put in teh hours to keep me in sunglasses" (as in a lot of singers are forced to hide in public), "this rivers full of lost sharks". It could deal with the paranioa of people you dont know recognising you, and also the duplictious nature of the record business.

    coyote78on April 05, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    I'm pretty sure its "I'm talking ace, this morning"

    Dmack24on August 27, 2007   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    It's definitely, definitely, definitely "I'm talking ace this morning".

    It's much clearer when they play it live.

    watchthestarson August 20, 2009   Link
  • +1
    General Comment

    I think this song is about the pressure of finding success as a band. It's an ode to their manager :). "I know you put in the hours to keep me in sunglasses" meaning someone has been working hard to make them a success.

    "And so and now I'm sorry I missed you I had a secret meeting in the basement of my brain It went the dull and wicked ordinary way"

    He blew off a responsibility or committment or appointment to go relax and get stoned by himself.

    I think what they are shouting in the background at the end is "Don't draw the ace then fold it" which makes sense in the context of having anxiety about getting famous. Most bands don't get the chance for real success (drawing the ace) - don't throw it away just because it scares you (folding it).

    heardithereon September 12, 2009   Link

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