Obviously the title is a metaphor. If you don't get it, I'll explain. The book is a relationship you're hung up on. And much like a good book or an ex-partner/friend you never got to be with because of other reasons, you tend to wait it out. You don't finish the story, you hold on to the book like it represented your life. Like once you closed that book, you were done with the life you set out to live.
No matter how hard you try, you're still on the losing end. Close the book, you close them off from your life even though you want them so bad to want you in their life the same way you want them in yours. This song perfectly personifies that. And it's hard to even call it a song because halfway through it becomes this spoken word poem about moving forward and moving on.
When explained in these terms (closing a book, etc.) it seems almost obvious what needs to be done. But I -- like many people I know -- don't make the obvious decision. And I'm glad this song, Flannel, helps with the process of getting ready to shut the book and put it back on the shelf to collect dust. Only to be touched in retrospect, only to be opened when you need a laugh, when you want to remember how foul you used to be.
The Cardboard Swords is a band that I only recently got into but this song just gave them a place in my record collection. Especially this version of it. Again, the video below isn't what you'll hear on the record, it comes from those special people who run Little Elephant. I hope you guys enjoy this one.
Notable Lyrics (all of them, really):
You said that I should get a clue. I did, and it was to rid my heart of you. I did exactly what you said I should do, I played the sleuth, and I found a clue. I still can’t stop thinking about you. That’s standard procedure, you know me. Fuck with my heart at your leisure, that’s how it goes, or it’s been going lately. You said I was the best, simultaneously the worst, and best case scenario I should be cursed for the rest of my life. I feel like I am because I won’t ever have you by my side. Stay warm in that flannel that I left on your bed, there was no way in hell I could put it on after that, we were both soaking wet. I apologize if from time to time, it makes you think of me, but just imagine seeing that stupid shirt, every time you breathe. That’s how it feels to be me. Your heart has proven to be more of a maze than construction season in the heritage hill one ways from someone who is not from Grand Rapids on their very first days. But me, I paid attention on my late night skates and when I was driving around in my van, and now my best friend who has lived here his whole life said I know the city better than him. He said, Ty, its like the back of your hand, I said Alek I’d trade it in a heartbeat for the backbone of a man. I had to change my way home from work because I couldn’t even stand to drive by her and see her on her front lawn, bikini on, getting a tan. Here’s the thing, I don’t need Fountain or Union street for anything except martha’s vineyard or the bakery. I’ll take the back of the Michigan hill down, Eastern around, and follow Lyon all the way there because this is what I have found: Life may or may not be about finding true love, but it is certainly not about begging for it for someone. I’ll keep doing the things that I do, late nights, fat blunts, pizza pies with my crew, driving home from whatever bar is half-off after two while blasting my favorite tunes, and seeing my favorite local bands at whatever venue. While you keep doing the things that you do, like shifting blame, twisting truth, and making absolutely positively certain that everyone in the room knows the victim just had to be you. I’ll keep doing the things that I do, and I’ll find someone who wants me like I wanted you.