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Thread started 07/16/12 9:51pm

sfinky1

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Ballad of Dorothy Parker - what happened??

One of my fave tracks.. there is so much cool things going on musically each time I listen 2 it I notice something new..

I must say from hearing the lyrics through so many times my mind has started 2 paint a picture of what really happens in the story.. I could be wrong but I am curious 2 hear what others' interpretations of the events R

My interpretation is:

- he'd been having some drama in his personal life or relationship which is referred 2 as the "violent room"
- he goes out and meets Dorothy who flirts with him & takes him home, they take a bath.
- at first he seems intimidated and reticent to make a move on Dorothy so he "leaves his pants on" which could just be a metaphor for keeping his guard up and being determined not 2 cheat cause he is "kind of going with somebody else"
- she keeps flirting "whoever's calling can't be as cute as U/ right then & there I knew I was thru" he thinks he is in and has a sure shot with her now
- so his "pants come off" ( he lets his guard down, makes a move) but she "pretended she was blind" in other words she ignores him and pretends not 2 see
- he feels silly, they have a laugh, he goes back 2 the violent room ( his troubled personal life/relationship) takes a bath by himself and masturbates thinking of Dorothy and which makes him feels so much better next time he'll "do it sooner"..

That's how the events pan out in my mind, basically a very poetic way of saying I didn't score with this chick but jerking off over her afterward felt just as good...does that make him guilty of cheating?? Etc etc

Dorothy was a waitress on the promenade
She worked the night shift
Dishwater blonde, tall and fine
She got a lot of tips
Well, earlier I'd been talkin' stuff
In a violent room
Fighting with lovers past
I needed someone with a quicker wit than mine
Dorothy walks past
Well, I ordered - "Yeah, let me get a fruit cocktail, I ain't 2 hungry"
Dorothy laughed
She said "Sounds like a real man 2 me"
Kinda cute, U wanna take a bath?
(do you wanna, do you wanna, bath)
I said "Cool, but I'm leaving my pants on" (she say)
"Cuz I'm kind of going with someone"
She said "Sounds like a real man 2 me"
"Mind if I turn on the radio?"
"Oh, my favorite song" she said
And it was Joni singing "Help me I think I'm falling"
(Ring)
The phone rang and she said
"Whoever's calling can't be as cute as U"
Right then I knew I was through
(Dorothy Parker was cool)

My pants where wet, they came off
But she didn't see the movie
Cuz she hadn't read the book first
Instead she pretended she was blind
An affliction brought on by a witch's curse
Dorothy made me laugh (ha ha)
I felt much better so I went back
2 the violent room (tell us what U did)
Let me tell U what I did...

I took another bubble bath with my pants on
All the fighting stopped
Next time I'll do it sooner
This is the ballad of Dorothy Parker

Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker
Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker
Well
Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker
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Reply #1 posted 07/17/12 5:26am

steakfinger

sfinky1 said:

One of my fave tracks.. there is so much cool things going on musically each time I listen 2 it I notice something new.. I must say from hearing the lyrics through so many times my mind has started 2 paint a picture of what really happens in the story.. I could be wrong but I am curious 2 hear what others' interpretations of the events R My interpretation is: - he'd been having some drama in his personal life or relationship which is referred 2 as the "violent room" - he goes out and meets Dorothy who flirts with him & takes him home, they take a bath. - at first he seems intimidated and reticent to make a move on Dorothy so he "leaves his pants on" which could just be a metaphor for keeping his guard up and being determined not 2 cheat cause he is "kind of going with somebody else" - she keeps flirting "whoever's calling can't be as cute as U/ right then & there I knew I was thru" he thinks he is in and has a sure shot with her now - so his "pants come off" ( he lets his guard down, makes a move) but she "pretended she was blind" in other words she ignores him and pretends not 2 see - he feels silly, they have a laugh, he goes back 2 the violent room ( his troubled personal life/relationship) takes a bath by himself and masturbates thinking of Dorothy and which makes him feels so much better next time he'll "do it sooner".. That's how the events pan out in my mind, basically a very poetic way of saying I didn't score with this chick but jerking off over her afterward felt just as good...does that make him guilty of cheating?? Etc etc Dorothy was a waitress on the promenade She worked the night shift Dishwater blonde, tall and fine She got a lot of tips Well, earlier I'd been talkin' stuff In a violent room Fighting with lovers past I needed someone with a quicker wit than mine Dorothy walks past Well, I ordered - "Yeah, let me get a fruit cocktail, I ain't 2 hungry" Dorothy laughed She said "Sounds like a real man 2 me" Kinda cute, U wanna take a bath? (do you wanna, do you wanna, bath) I said "Cool, but I'm leaving my pants on" (she say) "Cuz I'm kind of going with someone" She said "Sounds like a real man 2 me" "Mind if I turn on the radio?" "Oh, my favorite song" she said And it was Joni singing "Help me I think I'm falling" (Ring) The phone rang and she said "Whoever's calling can't be as cute as U" Right then I knew I was through (Dorothy Parker was cool) My pants where wet, they came off But she didn't see the movie Cuz she hadn't read the book first Instead she pretended she was blind An affliction brought on by a witch's curse Dorothy made me laugh (ha ha) I felt much better so I went back 2 the violent room (tell us what U did) Let me tell U what I did... I took another bubble bath with my pants on All the fighting stopped Next time I'll do it sooner This is the ballad of Dorothy Parker Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker Well Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker

It's utter nonsense. Based on a dream he had according to what he told the engineer of that session. He may have heard the name Dorothy Parker from having Wendy and Lisa around, but he certainly would not have approved of her writing or ideas on men and women relating to each other. She was certainly not tall or fine and her hair color could not have been described dishwater blonde. I doubt Prince has the attention span to do much serious reading, anyway. So basically stream-of-consciousness of some half-remembered dream.

No literal and probably no figurative meaning, either.

Hapiness is a Warm Gun is also an example of something that is most certainly meaningless but super-cool.

Cool song, though.

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Reply #2 posted 07/17/12 1:25pm

Doozer

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sfinky1 said:


I needed someone with a quicker wit than mine
Dorothy walks past


*Dorothy was fast
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Reply #3 posted 07/17/12 8:15pm

errant

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What is with all the glaringly obvious song meaning threads lately?
"does my cock look fat in these jeans?"
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Reply #4 posted 07/17/12 8:23pm

callimnate

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sfinky1 said:

he feels silly, they have a laugh, he goes back 2 the violent room ( his troubled personal life/relationship) takes a bath by himself and masturbates thinking of Dorothy and which makes him feels so much better next time he'll "do it sooner"..

"I took another bubble bath, with my pants on"

Can't masturbate with pants on. wink

Id say he went back home and took a bath WITHOUT any sexual innuendos, which his missus appreciated, and all the fighting stopped................

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Reply #5 posted 07/17/12 9:25pm

StonedImmacula
te

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steakfinger said:

sfinky1 said:

One of my fave tracks.. there is so much cool things going on musically each time I listen 2 it I notice something new.. I must say from hearing the lyrics through so many times my mind has started 2 paint a picture of what really happens in the story.. I could be wrong but I am curious 2 hear what others' interpretations of the events R My interpretation is: - he'd been having some drama in his personal life or relationship which is referred 2 as the "violent room" - he goes out and meets Dorothy who flirts with him & takes him home, they take a bath. - at first he seems intimidated and reticent to make a move on Dorothy so he "leaves his pants on" which could just be a metaphor for keeping his guard up and being determined not 2 cheat cause he is "kind of going with somebody else" - she keeps flirting "whoever's calling can't be as cute as U/ right then & there I knew I was thru" he thinks he is in and has a sure shot with her now - so his "pants come off" ( he lets his guard down, makes a move) but she "pretended she was blind" in other words she ignores him and pretends not 2 see - he feels silly, they have a laugh, he goes back 2 the violent room ( his troubled personal life/relationship) takes a bath by himself and masturbates thinking of Dorothy and which makes him feels so much better next time he'll "do it sooner".. That's how the events pan out in my mind, basically a very poetic way of saying I didn't score with this chick but jerking off over her afterward felt just as good...does that make him guilty of cheating?? Etc etc Dorothy was a waitress on the promenade She worked the night shift Dishwater blonde, tall and fine She got a lot of tips Well, earlier I'd been talkin' stuff In a violent room Fighting with lovers past I needed someone with a quicker wit than mine Dorothy walks past Well, I ordered - "Yeah, let me get a fruit cocktail, I ain't 2 hungry" Dorothy laughed She said "Sounds like a real man 2 me" Kinda cute, U wanna take a bath? (do you wanna, do you wanna, bath) I said "Cool, but I'm leaving my pants on" (she say) "Cuz I'm kind of going with someone" She said "Sounds like a real man 2 me" "Mind if I turn on the radio?" "Oh, my favorite song" she said And it was Joni singing "Help me I think I'm falling" (Ring) The phone rang and she said "Whoever's calling can't be as cute as U" Right then I knew I was through (Dorothy Parker was cool) My pants where wet, they came off But she didn't see the movie Cuz she hadn't read the book first Instead she pretended she was blind An affliction brought on by a witch's curse Dorothy made me laugh (ha ha) I felt much better so I went back 2 the violent room (tell us what U did) Let me tell U what I did... I took another bubble bath with my pants on All the fighting stopped Next time I'll do it sooner This is the ballad of Dorothy Parker Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker Well Dorothy Parker, Dorothy Parker

It's utter nonsense. Based on a dream he had according to what he told the engineer of that session. He may have heard the name Dorothy Parker from having Wendy and Lisa around, but he certainly would not have approved of her writing or ideas on men and women relating to each other. She was certainly not tall or fine and her hair color could not have been described dishwater blonde. I doubt Prince has the attention span to do much serious reading, anyway. So basically stream-of-consciousness of some half-remembered dream.

No literal and probably no figurative meaning, either.

Hapiness is a Warm Gun is also an example of something that is most certainly meaningless but super-cool.

Cool song, though.

Kind of off topic, but years ago I had someone explain Happiness Is A Warm Gun to me and it totally made sense.

Unfortunately I was high as a kite and cant remember now. lol

Lovemaking=shooting a gun? Something like that...

blunt music She has robes and she has monkeys, lazy diamond studded flunkies.... music blunt
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Reply #6 posted 07/18/12 1:32pm

Genesia

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callimnate said:

sfinky1 said:

he feels silly, they have a laugh, he goes back 2 the violent room ( his troubled personal life/relationship) takes a bath by himself and masturbates thinking of Dorothy and which makes him feels so much better next time he'll "do it sooner"..

"I took another bubble bath, with my pants on"

Can't masturbate with pants on. wink

Id say he went back home and took a bath WITHOUT any sexual innuendos, which his missus appreciated, and all the fighting stopped................

No. He went home, got in the bubble bath with his pants on and it made his girl laugh (as Dorothy had made him laugh and feel better). The laughter defused the anger, the fighting stopped, next time he'll do it sooner.

I mean if he did have sex he would break every rule Jehova's have regarding premarital sex so Prince is really just friends with them all anyway.
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Reply #7 posted 07/18/12 1:44pm

Timmy84

Probably didn't really mean anything. Prince comes up with songs from a vivid imagination. lol The lyrics don't make it seem like he was talking about anything that he was dealing with. Prince would do something like that now. lol Only times he seem real sincere about the songs he does is something about religion or even relationships but this one is not to be taken too seriously I don't think.

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Reply #8 posted 07/18/12 2:02pm

Genesia

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Timmy84 said:

Probably didn't really mean anything. Prince comes up with songs from a vivid imagination. lol The lyrics don't make it seem like he was talking about anything that he was dealing with. Prince would do something like that now. lol Only times he seem real sincere about the songs he does is something about religion or even relationships but this one is not to be taken too seriously I don't think.

I would agree that there's no deep meaning to this one.

Prince seems to me to be a collector of stories. He listens to the stories people around him tell - and repurposes them into songs. For example, we know that the character of Cynthia Rose in Starfish and Coffee was based (probably only loosely) on something from Susannah's childhood.

I think Lisa and the Melvoin girls gave him a tremendous amount of lyrical fodder. By all accounts, they a very rich childhood. (I mean "rich" in terms of experiences - not money, necessarily.) And because they were old friends, they would talk freely about the funny and interesting things that had happened to them. These stories sparked Prince's imagination.

Think about the way his lyrics changed from, say, 1999 to ATWIAD, Parade and SOTT. Where with 1999 (and before), his lyrics tended toward sexual braggadocio, they gradually evolved to have a deeper, broader "human experience" sort of ring. He didn't discard the sexual aspects entirely (obviously), but he wrote about more than just that.

I mean if he did have sex he would break every rule Jehova's have regarding premarital sex so Prince is really just friends with them all anyway.
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Reply #9 posted 07/18/12 2:06pm

Timmy84

Genesia said:

Timmy84 said:

Probably didn't really mean anything. Prince comes up with songs from a vivid imagination. lol The lyrics don't make it seem like he was talking about anything that he was dealing with. Prince would do something like that now. lol Only times he seem real sincere about the songs he does is something about religion or even relationships but this one is not to be taken too seriously I don't think.

I would agree that there's no deep meaning to this one.

Prince seems to me to be a collector of stories. He listens to the stories people around him tell - and repurposes them into songs. For example, we know that the character of Cynthia Rose in Starfish and Coffee was based (probably only loosely) on something from Susannah's childhood.

I think Lisa and the Melvoin girls gave him a tremendous amount of lyrical fodder. By all accounts, they a very rich childhood. (I mean "rich" in terms of experiences - not money, necessarily.) And because they were old friends, they would talk freely about the funny and interesting things that had happened to them. These stories sparked Prince's imagination.

Think about the way his lyrics changed from, say, 1999 to ATWIAD, Parade and SOTT. Where with 1999 (and before), his lyrics tended toward sexual braggadocio, they gradually evolved to have a deeper, broader "human experience" sort of ring. He didn't discard the sexual aspects entirely (obviously), but he wrote about more than just that.

Yeah he basically had a nosy ear and he used that ear to write songs that came from the words of his collaborators.

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Reply #10 posted 07/18/12 2:16pm

Genesia

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Timmy84 said:

Genesia said:

I would agree that there's no deep meaning to this one.

Prince seems to me to be a collector of stories. He listens to the stories people around him tell - and repurposes them into songs. For example, we know that the character of Cynthia Rose in Starfish and Coffee was based (probably only loosely) on something from Susannah's childhood.

I think Lisa and the Melvoin girls gave him a tremendous amount of lyrical fodder. By all accounts, they a very rich childhood. (I mean "rich" in terms of experiences - not money, necessarily.) And because they were old friends, they would talk freely about the funny and interesting things that had happened to them. These stories sparked Prince's imagination.

Think about the way his lyrics changed from, say, 1999 to ATWIAD, Parade and SOTT. Where with 1999 (and before), his lyrics tended toward sexual braggadocio, they gradually evolved to have a deeper, broader "human experience" sort of ring. He didn't discard the sexual aspects entirely (obviously), but he wrote about more than just that.

Yeah he basically had a nosy ear and he used that ear to write songs that came from the words of his collaborators.

It's like that episode of Seinfeld in which J. Peterman bought all Kramer's stories. lol

I mean if he did have sex he would break every rule Jehova's have regarding premarital sex so Prince is really just friends with them all anyway.
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Reply #11 posted 07/18/12 2:32pm

Timmy84

Genesia said:

Timmy84 said:

Yeah he basically had a nosy ear and he used that ear to write songs that came from the words of his collaborators.

It's like that episode of Seinfeld in which J. Peterman bought all Kramer's stories. lol

lol

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Reply #12 posted 07/18/12 3:37pm

Genesia

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Timmy84 said:

Genesia said:

It's like that episode of Seinfeld in which J. Peterman bought all Kramer's stories. lol

lol

Except that Prince, bitch that he is, didn't pay for them. neutral

I mean if he did have sex he would break every rule Jehova's have regarding premarital sex so Prince is really just friends with them all anyway.
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Reply #13 posted 07/18/12 3:42pm

Timmy84

Genesia said:

Timmy84 said:

lol

Except that Prince, bitch that he is, didn't pay for them. neutral

lol @ "bitch that he is". I wonder if they ever sued him for alleged credit for the songs.

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Reply #14 posted 07/18/12 6:42pm

sfinky1

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I was not suggesting that the song is factual in any way or has anything to do with The real Dorothy Parker or an incident in Prince's own life.

The lyrics like a lot of his songs may appear nonsense but they still read in a linear way and describe a series of events albeit spoken in prince riddles..

I'm just interested 2 hear the 'story' that other listeners have pieced together from it??

"My pants where wet, they came off
But she didn't see the movie
Cuz she hadn't read the book first
Instead she pretended she was blind.."

In my mind when I hear it it sounds like the character in the story has an erection or makes some kind of sexual gesture that Dorothy ignores and pretends not to see.. She basically turns down his advances and so he later takes a bath on his own and relieves himself so to speak .. That's just how I hear it
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Reply #15 posted 07/18/12 7:59pm

artist76

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To those who suggest that Prince "stole" this story idea from collaborators, I proffer the following counter circumstantial "evidence." 1) He's been into Joni Mitchell since before W&L, whose songs are often stories reminiscent of "Dorothy," 2) in an interview, he's said that he used to go to sex when he was angry or frustrated (I guess like a stress-reliever), and I always think of that when I hear "Dorothy" because the story fits - he's in a "violent room" (frustrated, angry) and he tries not to have sex for the "wrong" reasons (stress relief) but ends up doing so and feels better.

Anyway, one of my favorite songs.

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Reply #16 posted 07/19/12 3:22pm

thanks2joniand
u

One of my favorites too. It's best I try not to make sense of it and enjoy it for the "esoteric gem" that it is razz ...Dorothy died in 1967...how could she hear Joni's "Help Me" on the radio when it was released in 74' ??? See...better to just enjoy it for what it is.

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Reply #17 posted 07/20/12 1:23pm

Tremolina

Genesia said:

Prince seems to me to be a collector of stories. He listens to the stories people around him tell - and repurposes them into songs.

I think so too.

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