Friday, September 30, 2005

Monkeys Essay Contest

J was playing with his monkey tonight. In the background, "Shock the Monkey" played on the CD player. H sang to J, making up new words as he went:

"Monkey, fur so tasty
Monkeeeeey, something's burning
Monkey, your fur's on fire"

Inevitably, this led us to question this song's significance. We are certain that it has a deep and powerful meaning, just as do all Peter Gabriel songs. (I mean, just look at the powerful symbolism juxtaposed with the subtle nuances found in "Sledgehammer", and you'll see what we mean). But we just can't quite figure it out. Maybe we're too tired. Or maybe the song's depth and power is just lost on we weak-minded neophites. Perhaps someone with greater clarity and intelligence can assist.

Here are the words:

**************
Cover me when I run
Cover me through the fire
Something knocked me out' the trees
Now I'm on my knees
Cover me, darling please
Monkey, monkey, monkey
Don't you know you're going to shock the monkey

Fox the fox
Rat out the rat
You can ape the ape
I know about that
There is one thing you must be sure of
I cannot take any more
Darling, don't you monkey with the monkey
Monkey, monkey, monkey
Don't you know you're going to shock the monkey
Shock the monkey

Monkey, wheels keep turning
Monkeeeeey, something's burning
Monkey, don't like it but I guess I'm learning

Shock!
Shock!
Shock! - watch the monkey get hurt, monkey

Cover me, when I sleep
Cover me, when I breathe
You throw your pearls before the swine
Make the monkey blind
Cover me, darling please

Monkey, too much at stake
Monkeeeeey, ground beneath me shake
Monkey, and the news is breaking

Shock!
Shock!
Shock! - watch the monkey get hurt, monkey

Shock the monkey
Shock the monkey
Shock the monkey to life
Shock the monkey to life
Shock the monkey to life
Shock the monkey to life

Shock the monkey
(Shock the monkey)
Shock the monkey
(Shock the monkey)

Shock the monkey

Shock the monkey to life


**************
Does anyone care to discuss this further? Is it symbolic of anything in particular? Is it a deep and meaningful discussion from the mind of a creative genius? Political commentary, perhaps? Paul and his yo-yos? Or what? Does it mean anything to you personally?

And why can you fox the fox, rat out the rat, and ape the ape, but yet you are forbidden to monkey with the monkey? Isn't that sort of discriminatory? Do the monkeys have any basis to proceed with a class action?

So...

Leave your comment, detailing your interpretation of these intensely deep and thought provoking lyrics. (Your essays will be graded on content, spelling and grammar. Not really; we just want to see what you all have to say on the subject. The prize will be our undying awe for your creativity.)

If you are here. and you know someone who might like to participte in this ground-breaking "essay contest", please direct them to:

http://lovemyjared.blogspot.com/2005/09/monkeys-essay-contest.html

3 comments:

va1kyrie said...

Much as I love monkeys, you can't trick me into writing an essay on them. I'm not in school. I don't have to write essays. :-)

theatre_mommy said...

The man obviously fascinated by monkeys. He calls them darling. He may also be harkening back to when men were monkeys, falling out of trees and such.
He like to shock monkeys and may actually be referring to himself as “the” money who gets, or needs shocking. Monkeys to him are very special so you can’t monkey around with them. He’s not a big fan of foxes, rats or apes though. This is strange because apes are closely related to monkeys. His love of monkeys is too much to bear. It makes the ground shake when the news of it breaks. Is girlfriend shouldn’t love him because his monkey obsession makes him a swine. He needs shock therapy.

ninedoors said...

after a bit of research, i found this:

Dave Andreozzi
ap933@OSFN.rhilinet.gov,
Thursday, November 14 1996

I think this song is concerned with our animalistic nature, the part of us that has not, in a sense, evolved, despite science, technological advances and so forth. Gabriel points out that it is about jealousy, but I think that is only part of what he is getting at. Jealously is merely one of the animalistic emotions he's referring to. In effect, Gabriel is indicting modern civilization, the very same one which is supposed to be advanced and sophisticated. Have we really come a long way in human existence, or are we at heart the barbarous animal that lives within us all? Gabriel only points this question for us to answer on our own.

I, however thought it make more of a socio-political commentary, but if Mr. Gabriel says it's a song about jealousy, then it's a song about jealousy.