I first heard this song when I was in my early 30's. The movie Magnolia remains one of my favourites. It struck a deep chord - both the theme song and the movie. I read that the director of Magnolia loved Aimee Manns songs so much that he pretty much wrote a movie around them.
Anyway. Here I am 20 years on, with a new interest in Stoic Philosophy. And, I feel that this song for me is the "anthem" of Stoic philosophy. I even said to my partner recently that I think this song should be played at my funeral!
For me, this song is about facing reality. Not getting lost in fantasy, or in victimhood, or regret, or in any of the vast number of mind-fucks that I can (and do) concoct for myself. It reminds me to learn and grow from the choices that I make in life - and that no self-indulgence is going to help me escape the from the consequences of my actions (or lack thereof). This song urges me to face the truth of the fact that before it's too late, I'm gonna need to work out what I need in my life, in order to feel contented. If I do not manage this, my list of regrets is "not going to stop" and will continue growing longer. The last line in this song used to disturb me a little:
"just give up"
... on the face of it Aimee Mann seems to be advocating one to exit stage left. My latest interpretation is this - that it is actually about "giving up" the delusion that the inner disquiet you feel is "going to stop", unless you "wise up". To me this 'wising up' is about training the mind, so that I do not use my mind as a weapon against myself. And therein will lie the peace and solace that my soul seeks.
Hilary @ goodTherapy ________________
"Wise Up" - by Amy Mann (featured in the movie "Magnolia") It's not What you thought When you first began it You got What you want Now you can hardly stand it though By now you know It's not going to stop It's not going to stop It's not going to stop 'Til you wise up You're sure There's a cure And you have finally found it You think One drink Will shrink you 'til you're underground And living down But it's not going to stop It's not going to stop It's not going to stop 'Til you wise up Prepare a list of what you need Before you sign away the deed 'Cause it's not going to stop It's not going to stop It's not going to stop 'Til you wise up No, it's not going to stop 'Til you wise up No, it's not going to stop So just, give up