(Sung as a canon...)

Why are you so ugly?

And why are you so fat?

And don’t you wear deodorant?

What’s the deal with that?

And why are you so stupid?

And who picks out your clothes?

‘Cause I would rather die than be

Spotted wearing those!

And ev’ry time I see you,

I think I’m gonna gag

‘Cause God!  You’re such a loser!

And God!  You’re such a fag!

And God!  You’re still a virgin?!

(Or) God!  You’re such a whore!

And God!  It would be great not to

See you any more!

‘Cause no one really likes you

Or wants to be your friend.

And why you even matter

Is hard to comprehend.

You’re so completely worthless.

So why not go ahead

And do the world a favor


      (You’re so completely worthless


            (And you don’t even matter,

            So JUST DROP DEAD!)

                  (‘Cause no one really likes you,

                  So JUST DROP DEAD!)

. . .

I’m sorry.

I never meant

To make you feel

Upset with me.

I’m sorry.

I didn’t know

The things I did

Were so uncool.

But I see now --

This will never change.

I see now

All you tried to tell me.

I’m a loser.

I’m a nothing.

I’m sorry.

I’m ev’rything you’ve said I was

All the way along.

It’s just --

I never thought that it was true.

I fought against the things you said,

Thinking you were wrong.

I made myself believe

I could be just the same as you.

But I’m not popular.

I’m not beautiful.

I’m not special.

I’m just me.

I am awkward.

I’m ridiculous.

I’m a loser.

And that’s all I’ll ever be.

And I’m tired

Of never living up to expectations.

Of never being good enough to matter.

Of never being able to be

Anything but me . . .

I’m sorry

That I took so long

To understand

That you were right.

I’m sorry

That I made you all

Put up with me

For all those years.

But tomorrow,

It’ll be okay.


You’ll go on without me.

One less loser.

One less nothing.

I’m sorry.

I’m sorry.

I’m sorry...

As part of the Third Songwriting Cycle, I was challenged to either (1) use a movie, TV show, online program, or book that I had recently watched or read as inspiration for a song, or (2) select a rhetorical device and translate it into music.  I ended up using the first challenge, and the result was Election Night 2012.

But for much of the three weeks we had to finish our songs, it was actually that second challenge that I thought was going to lead to a song.  Using epizeuxis and possibly aposiopesis, I thought I’d write a point-of-view song about someone facing the extremes of bullying.  With Amanda Todd fresh in everyone’s mind, and with other such videos appearing on YouTube (such as this, this, and this), I thought it would make for a powerful, thought-provoking song.

However -- the more I thought about it, the more I realized that the song that I wanted to write was not the song that the “main character” would actually be singing.  I was thinking of a song with crashing, driving, repeated musical punctuation marks and howling expressions of anger and frustration and indignation.  Musically, it would have been very cool to write and perform and record.

But I didn’t think that’s what someone would be feeling if they were at the end of all things.

Here’s what I wrote back in November of 2012.

  1. “I suspect that if that despair and resignation took the form of a song, it would be quiet.  And despondent.  And still.  And characterized by tragic acceptance, rather than active defiance.

  2. “It’s entirely possible that -- later -- I might write that song.  But I realized that I did not want to write that kind of a song now -- here in the middle of November of 2012.  I did not want to plumb the emotional depths necessary to try to get into the head of someone so shattered and depressed, so that I could try to do them justice with a meaningful song.  And I did not have the time to invest in writing something stripped-down and achingly simple.

  3. “‘Simple’ is exquisitely difficult to create well.  It’s far easier to write something big and noisy, where everyone’s focused on the broad strokes and just about any note that you care to sound can sound good within the context of a big cloud of roiling notes.  But when everything but the absolute essentials are stripped away, every single facet of every single thing must be chosen with tremendous care.  And that takes a tremendous amount of time and attention.  It’s not that I can’t do it.  I have before.  And it’s not necessarily that I won’t do it.  But I chose not to do it for this songwriting challenge.”

Well -- in March of 2013, on the heels of writing a protest song about bullying for Round Three of SpinTunes, the Round Four challenge was to “write a protest song about the same topic you picked in Round Three!”

So -- my Round Three song went from having the title of “On The Matter Of Bullying” to having the slightly longer title of “On The Matter Of Bullying (Part 1),” and my Round Four song became the song I didn’t write four months earlier . . .

(You can follow this link to hear

Part 3 of my bullying trilogy . . .)