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RAYN is SorRy(an)

Last week Paul and Ian responded to Ryan's apology. Here is Ryan's apology. Next week, you'll see Paul and Ian's apologies that prompted Ryan's apologies. Aw, geez!


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@construxnunchux Shallow Analysis: Journey - Don't Stop Believin'

We know the score, the song we've sang innumerable times at karaoke and at Colts games but we're so caught up in what's going on around us that it's a wonder if anyone's ever taken the time to stop and think about The Journeys are actually talking about. Paul, Ryan and Ian break down this late-night-car-ride staple for you in the first Shallow Analysis of Construx Nunchux's 4th year. Don't worry, we haven't softened with age at all. WE AIN'T CHEESE!!!


Just a small town girl
Livin' in a lonely world
She took the midnight train
Goin' anywhere
Just a city boy
Born and raised in South Detroit
He took the midnight train
Goin' anywhere

Paul: Ok, this is a boy-meets-girl story? or a story about convenient transportation? The only mid-night train I know of is full of ill-intentions and poor morals. Where do they need to go immediately anyways? I guess if you lived in South Detroit you'd want to go anywhere as quickly (and possibly at a fair value) as you could.  I'm glad this cheap shilling of Detroit Amtrak station has veiled its sneaky intentions behind an overrated stadium rock song. 




Ryan: This is a story about how a lonely girl who never felt right. Not only in her surroundings (Detroit) but in her body. This isn't about 2 individuals at all... This is about one person, and there journey to find out who they really are. A true story about soul searching. 

Ian: Okay, okay. Before anything. There is no such thing as a midnight train to anywhere. Georgia, maybe. But not anywhere!  Even if this apparently jaded and aloof small town girl didn’t know or care where her train was headed, then this omniscient narrator surely would know where the train was headed. And the city boy simply has no excuse for getting on any ol’ train. He’s supposed to have street smarts! Do they not apply because trains technically run on tracks?!?! Whatta rookie mistake!  I can’t conceive an engineer calling out the window “All board! Engine No. 389, including stops at Anywhere, Aw What The Hell and We’ll Make It Up As We Go Along!” much less anyone on the platform hearing that and rushing to exchange the ticket they bought to an actual destination.

It is here, boarding this mysteriously wayward train where we meet our characters. Some thoughts: this girl does not live in a lonely world. She lives in a small town. American small towns are notoriously friendly and naïve. I guess the point is that she wants something more than the small town she’s known all her life. But then isn’t the boy leaving the big city an immediate counterpoint? Or are we supposed to accept that they have given up on their surroundings? That there’s nothing there for them anymore, that perhaps… they’ve already stopped believin(‘)?

A singer in a smokey room
The smell of wine and cheap perfume
For a smile they can share the night
It goes on and on and on and on

Paul: Wait, who are we talking about now? Is this a new person? So the narrator is an expert perfumer and sommelier  who is in a place to where they exchange sex for smiles.  Although an interesting, and possibly illegal business model I'm not sure where the narrator/singer ended up here. In the previous verse it set our expectations up for a romantic encounter and now we are in a sketchy place where people are smiling and fornicating. Call me a prude, but I'm not happy to where this song is going.

Ryan: The he/she (not judging, I couldn't imagine how difficult it would be to not even understand what sex best represents how I feel.. I feel for this character) finds herself/himself at a Journey concert. Though she/he sees a man, it is clearly a womens voice. Immediately, he/she feels a connection... 

Ian: I get it. I get it. Setting the scene. Ooh, romantic. But… not really, just a musty, gross room somewhere (there is no way this can still be on the train; you’re lucky that they still have a dining car). Somewhere that isn’t a small town or a city. I mean, since we don’t know where the singer is from, or even their gender, we can assume they are simply part of the décor, part of the setting and therefore not even being considered in the line “they can share the night”. Essentially, we are referred back to the girl and the boy. For a smile, they can share the night. Because they leered at each other in some seedy bus stop bar, they can go get a quickie. Very romantic.
Even if you’re being metaphorical, sharing the night is the exact opposite of a romance going on and on and on. A one night stand is the polar opposite of a long-term relationship. So, what, this memory is supposed to define their lives? “I remember the one time I took a train to  a town I don’t know where it was and then I banged someone randomly because I had one too many glasses of pinot puke. I’ll never forget it.”

Strangers waiting
Up and down the boulevard
Their shadows searching
In the night
Streetlight people
Livin' just to find emotion
Hidin' somewhere in the night

Paul: Does this have anything to do with the Grin N Bang up the street from the last verse? This song is a mess! What is it about? Two non-descriptive people taking a reasonable priced budget train out of Detroit - then what? So maybe in Detroit or away from Detroit there are strangers waiting everywhere! If there are alot of them I find it hard to believe that they don't know each other. After hanging about outside for long enough I think curiosity would trump shyness and people would question other people's decisions to wait. What are the waiting for? I bet we will never know. 

Now there are shadow people and street light people alive looking for (human?) emotion. I know human emotion is complicated but they aren't going to find it hiding.





Ryan: Strangers doesn't describe others on the streets but is more a reflection of the character who is living in the song. As he/she searches the streets, looking for anything that he/she can compare her/his own self, he/she realizes that not everything is in black and white. Except night... That is defiantly black.. 

Ian: Apparently that was just an opening pastiche, a mise-en-scene, if you will, a backdrop for what is one of the most terrifying horror pop songs ever composed. On a road full of ominous strangers, wandering stragglers lurking under the moon, shadows come to life and prey upon young lovers. This is a condensed version of Journey’s hack at a film script starring the band. The Monkees had Head; The Ramones had Rock N Roll High School; G.G. Allin had Hated; and Journey had Streetlight People. A terrifying tale, indeed! The basic plot centers on Oh, and the small town girl? The city boy? Yes. They meet in the seedy bar. They share a smile, finish their drinks together and head back to the girl’s hotel room. Unable to control their passions, they stop in a thinly secluded allyway. Big mistake. These two, on whom we’ve hung so much compassionate investment, are the first two consumed by the streetlight people.

Workin' hard to get my fill
Everybody wants a thrill
Payin' anything to roll the dice
Just one more time
Some will win
Some will lose
Some were born to sing the blues
Oh, the movie never ends
It goes on and on and on and on

Paul: Oh, Ok! I get it. This guy is an addict. Working hard to pay for whatever his vice is, hoping he takes enough just not to OD. So this song is all about this dude riding the rails (literally and figuratively) getting high and watching shadows and living street lights trying to eat human hearts. Wait ... maybe this song isn't as dumb as I thought.

Ryan: The character gets lost in a casino... 
Ian: This verse, of course, is told from the point of view of the leader of the streetlight people. Not unlike Candyman, he continues to terrorize and consume for so long and to such excess that he has long since forgotten his initial motivation for his bloodlust. Now all he knows is that the more desire, the more rage, the more affection, the more—in short-thrills he and his people consume, the longer they can survive, into infinity, like The Neverending Story. The next victims? Just some Chicago bluesmen throwin’ bones on the stoop… And it goes on…

Strangers waiting
Up and down the boulevard
Their shadows searching
In the night
Streetlight people
Livin' just to find emotion
Hidin' somewhere in the night

Paul:
Ryan: This is where the song gets off track... Usually this is where bands like this make musical interludes that is mostly just a guitar repeating vocal lines... 

Ian: Don’t stop believing in the Streetlight People. Because they’re real…

[Instrumental interlude]

Ryan: Damn, I was right! 

Don't stop believin'
Hold on to that feelin'
Streetlight people
Don't stop believin'
Hold on
Streetlight people
Don't stop believin'
Hold on to that feelin'
Streetlight people
Paul: This is just a drug addled ramble. We get it you're high. Don't push your lifestyle on me! 

Ryan: This song has 0 closure... I sincerely hope that whoever this song is about (Obviously the singer of Journey) that they have finally found comfort in themselves. Because no matter what gender you are, we all feel this way in one way or another. What we need to realize is we should not let our gender or sexuality define who we are. At the end of the day, we are all humans and want to be loved. Except the singer of Journey, fuck that girl! 

Ian: Y’know those strangers? Stormin up and down the boulevard? This is their refrain. Hold onto that feelin. So they can consume it, suck it through your pores, your hearts, your smoke filled, small town aloofness, your big city charm. And you, dear viewer, hold on to your seat, yourself, your sanity, because once you encounter The Streetlight People, you will never be whole again.


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Andrew W.K. or Mr. Rogers? (#1 Party In The Neighborhood!)

Below are two sets of quotes. One in each set belongs to either Party King Andrew W.K. or to our favorite neighbor Fred "Mr." Rogers. Both are Mt. Construxmore Hall Of Inspiration Inductees. Each maintains a legacy built off of spreading positive vibes and reminding us how special we are. Both of them love you.  But who said what?

Since it would be easy enough to google or wiki the right answers, we ask you to take a second and challenge yourself a little bit while trying to guess which quote belongs to which awesome human. And whether you get them right or wrong or look up the answers immediately, at least you get to read these wonderful insights that'll hopefully keep you going through your day.








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