Friday, August 26, 2011

If you black out, you can't remember what you read

Katy Perry's single "Last Friday Night (TGIF)" is a slightly manic, bouncy, ridiculously catchy bit of pop with seriously disturbed/disturbing lyrics that get stuck in your head.  I've heard it multiple times over the last couple of weeks since I started working out at my company gym where the radio station plays it and fourteen other songs. 

Please read the lyrics.

Now, call me old-fashioned (or just old), but I've always liked to be fully conscious and able to remember my fun times with my friends.  But also, the things described in this song do not sound like fun times to me, at all.  They sound ridiculous and also impossible to do in one night with any amount of thoroughness.  Also likely illegal and potentially injurious. 

My idea of a Friday night that rules is one where I can sit and read all night alone or maybe watch something and talk to friends somewhere quiet if I'm feeling oddly social, so my definition of fun is hardly typical.  I found myself wondering if these kinds of behaviors are really what young people consider(ed) a good time, something to strive toward.  Reading comments on the song, I've had to cringe at the number of folks who see this kind of Friday night as a worthy goal.  Really? I want to ask them. Why?!

It seemed pretty over the top, so I wondered if it was satire or some sort of gleeful homage to 80s teen overindulgence movies (like Relient K's "Falling in Love with the 80s", only with more R-rated content).  The music video makes me think maybe it was intended to be one or both of these things, but most people hear the song and don't see the video. 

Do you think this is celebratory or mocking?  Do you think this is the kind of behavior average teens aspire to?  Did you ever aspire to it or experience it (or dream of it even if you were more straight-laced in your actions)?  What ultimately governed your actions?  What do you think makes this vision of teenage life attractive to some, and who do you think it attracts?


  1. I have to admit to a certain horrified, amused fascination with that song the first few times I've heard it. It's past now.. I've internalized enough of the lyrics that I can't help remembering the awful parts as much as the funny parts.. But it was amusing.

    I think it's.. Mostly humorous. Not celebratory, not exactly mocking. I don't think it's that deep. I think it's a bit of both, though. Mocking that degree of excess, but celebrating the idea behind it.

    I've occasionally thought about actions like that. There's a certain spirit of true abandon and freedom there that's appealing. I've lived a little bit of situations like that, minus the drug abuse and blacking out, and it can be a LOT of fun to go a bit wild. But, then, my idea of that is obviously far short of anything in the song.

    I suppose I try to take it as a tawdry celebration of going out and having fun. That's something I enjoy every once in a great while (though I'm mostly bad at it), and it's something to be handled with care. I'm not sure if the song is intended that way - The content of it is really kind of disturbing if listened to carefully.

  2. Thanks for commenting so honestly! It's nice to hear what other people think about something that intrigues me. :)