Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Walt Grace's Submarine Test, January 1967.

I messed up. Yes that is right, I am admitting my wrongs and correcting them here. Last week I reviewed the new John Mayer album after a one take listen. Well, after taking some more listens to the album, I still agree that its a great album but I have a correction to my post. I completely missed the best song on the album. Doh. 

So here is my correction:

"Walk Grace's Submarine Test, January 1967" could be the best song that John Mayer has ever written. Its the one I can most easily relate to that is for sure. Because you see its a song that hits on the themes of being unsatisfied and hoping for more; dreaming of more. Then pushing off to sea hoping for more. Its the story of Walt Grace and his attempt to make a 'One Man Fan Blade Submarine Ride"


Walt Grace, desperately hating his whole place,
Dreamed to discover a new space,
And buried himself alive,
Inside his basement, tongue on the side of his face when,
He's working away on displacement,
And what it would take to survive.

'Cause when you're done with this world,
You know the next is up to you.

And his wife told his kids he was crazy,
And his friends said he'd fail if he tried,
But with a will to work hard,
And a library card,
He took a homemade, fan-blade, one-man submarine ride.

That morning, the sea was mad and I mean it,
Waves as big as he'd seen it,
Deep in his dreams at home.
From dry land,
He rolled it over to wet sand,
Closed the hatch up with one hand,
And peddled off alone.

'Cause when you're done with this world,
You know the next is up to you.
And for once in his life it was quiet,
As he learned how to turn in the tide,
And the sky was a flare,
When he came up for air,
In his homemade, fan-blade, one-man submarine ride.

One evening,
When weeks had passed since his leaving,
The call she'd planned on receiving,
Finally made it home.
She accepted,
The news she'd never expected,
The operator connected,
A call from Tokyo.

'Cause when you're done with this world,
You know the next is up to you.
Now his friends,
Bring him up when they're drinking,
At the bar with his name on the side,
And they smile when they can,
As they speak of a man,
Who took a homemade,
Fan-blade, one-man submarine ride.

Now comes the big question that I have been battling with for the last week. Did Walt survive his trip? I think its a great question that John left unanswered. In my opinion he made it and here is why. And this is exactly why I love lyrics so much!!

"And his wife told his kids he was crazy" - his wife did not believe he would succeed
"She accepted the news she never expected" - this confirms that he survived against all expectations
"Now his friends bring him up when they're drinking" - they reminisce because he had the courage to change his life, to move on. He did not die. 

I see it as a positive, motiviational story. If you are afraid of change you will take the side of his wife and his friends, if you are looking for change and adventure knowing it will bring struggle and adversity, you will take Walt's. 

"Cause when your done with this world
You know the rest is up to you"

Ladies and Gentlemen, I stand corrected. This is John Mayer at his finest. 

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