Song Of The Day 8/3/2015: Paul Simon – “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover”

Week of Lies – Many people don’t know this, but Paul Simon’s “50 Ways to Leave Your Lover” was actually an adaptation of a pre-existing work, like Simon had with “Scarborough Fair” and “El Condor Pasa.” In this case Simon took inspiration from a leaflet distributed by certain over-extending branches of Planned Parenthood in the 1960’s, intended for people attempting to gracefully exit from a bad or unexciting relationship. The contents of that pamphlet are reprinted below.
  1. Slip out the back, Jack.
  2. Make a new plan, Stan.
  3. You don’t need to be coy, Roy.
  4. Just get yourself free.
  5. Hop off the bus, Gus.
  6. You don’t need to discuss much.
  7. Drop off the key, Lee.
  8. See No. 4.
  9. Start moving on, Sean.
  10. Just up and leave, Steve.
  11. Go out for a pack of cigarettes, Chet.
  12. Lose your job, Bob.
  13. Pack up your stuff, Duff.
  14. Get a Brazilian wax, Max.
  15. Frame your partner for arson, Carson.
  16. Start going out with a freemason, Jason.
  17. Hurl your commitment ring upon the macadam, Adam.
  18. Claim that your overall interest has faded, David.
  19. Profess that it’s just too much drama, Osama.
  20. Develop a case of syphilis, Willis.
  21. Get a restraining order, Mortimer.
  22. Read Rollo May’s Love and Will, Bill.
  23. Pretend that you’ve turned gay, Ray.
  24. Or pretend that you’ve turned straight, Nate.
  25. Say that your relationship has caused a lot of family dishonor, Connor.
  26. Impale yourself inside an iron maiden, Caden.
  27. Expose yourself to a case of the avian flu, Andrew.
  28. Start being more of a grunter, Hunter.
  29. Tattoo some offensive insignias and logos upon your face, Chase.
  30. Chew a lot more Skoal, Cole.
  31. Exchange your dollars for bolivars, Oliver.
  32. Guzzle down about 15 gin and tonics, Dominic.
  33. Say something mean and get sued for slander, Xander.
  34. Explain that while love is ideally infinite, man’s inbred quest for finality, or conversely the finite, causes him to reevaluate, either by design or proxy, whether he can or cannot continue to contribute to the immediate arrangement conferred by the relationship in question, or perhaps that indeed all opportunities within this particular framework have been answered to their utmost extent and that the point of accumulation has been reached, and therefore, having attained this ultimate demarcation, the cessation of active concupiscence has been arrived at a little more sooner than the protagonist may like, Mike.
  35. Crash your partner’s Harley, Marley.
  36. Rub yourself with sardines so you smell odd, Claude.
  37. Go out on errands in your crop-duster, Buster.
  38. Paint a nasty canker sore on your upper lip, Chip.
  39. Spend half of your budget at strip clubs, Bub.
  40. Drive your car into a ravine, Gene.
  41. Get abducted by an alien spacecraft, Taft.
  42. Check yourself into a sanitarium due to your psychosis, Moses.
  43. Start wearing eight-inch heels and a revealing halter, Walter.
  44. Suggest a three-way with a random transient picked up off the street, Pete.
  45. Go to the Gathering of the Juggalos, Mark Ruffalo.
  46. Take up bullfighting as a hobby, Bobby.
  47. Sacrifice local stray pets to the Devil, Cecil.
  48. Take baking soda by the spoonful until you puke, Luke.
  49. Eat up all the Reese’s Pieces, Jesus.
  50. Move to the Arctic Circle, Urkel.
Simon was praised by critics for his judicious editing and sharp songcraft at the 1976 Winter Olympics, defeating Dorothy Hamill.
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