Tuesday, 11 February 2014

Better Man

“Waitin', watchin' the clock, it's four o'clock, it's got to stop
Tell him, take no more, she practices her speech
As he opens the door, she rolls over...
Pretends to sleep as he looks her over

She lies and says she's in love with him, can't find a better man...
She dreams in color, she dreams in red, can't find a better man...
Can't find a better man”

Better Man – Pearl Jam

It’s been a pretty great summer in New Zealand this year, with sunny skies, beaches, barbeques and days spent either the ground or lying on the couch watching cricket. I am a big cricket fan, it is my favourite sport to watch, and I have enjoyed the season thus far very much. But one thing has irked me this season and indeed previous seasons, and that thing which has irked me more than silly slog shots and countless wide balls*, is how New Zealand’s captain Brendon McCullum comes to the crease with Better Man playing.

I talk a lot about how one can interpret songs and I still believe every song is open for one to view it how they want and need. But there is a big difference between slightly different interpretations and blatantly ignoring the message of the song. It takes only one listen to Better Man to know this song is about a woman trapped in an abusive relationship, and she only stays because she is so blinded by love and she believes this guy is the best she will ever get. Better Man isn’t about being the best, it’s about being the worst but not being able to find anyone better – which I am pretty sure is not quite what McCullum thinks of himself.

Music is used in public all the time, and we come to associate different songs with people and corporations, such as Open Happiness is the song of Coca-Cola and Eye of the Tiger will always remind you of Rocky III. Most of the time the songs represent the product reasonably well and there is no reason to complain. But I feel if you are going to put a song out into public to represent yourself you should probably be aware of public responsibility and probably shouldn’t be one with a message so negative as the one in Better Man.  Even if BMac really, really likes the song – and putting the theme aside Better Man is a good song – I personally would like to see him walk out to something a bit more positive.

I’m not going to suggest a song for McCullum as I don’t know his music tastes at all, but I will throw this out for the readers: if you were walking out to the batting crease which song would you opt for?

*I wrote this blog late last week and sat on it before posting it tonight, between which time something has made me far more angry in the cricket world, which is the developing issue of Jesse Ryder and Doug Bracewell out drinking. While now slightly outdated I did raise some thoughts on this last year when I mused about Scribe’s Dreaming.

No comments:

Post a Comment