Serpentine Pad
Pavement Lyrics

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Frequently called numbers
Snoring when you slumber
Everyone knows you do
Why won't you admit it?

Screw you
And take it all
Force-fed integration
From the corporation
I don't need this
Corporation attitude

I believe I will never leave
Your serpentine pad

Darling, when you wake up
Better ask the grown-ups
If they have posed 'em twice
Leave them and lead other lives

Think it might be another thing
That I would want to know
But I don't know if I should
If I could and if I would anyway

I believe I will never leave
Your serpentine pad

Overall Meaning

The lyrics to Pavement's Serpentine Pad could be interpreted in different ways, but they seem to evoke a sense of rebellion and individuality against corporate control and conformity. The first stanza mentions "Frequently called numbers," which could refer to a list of rules or regulations imposed by a corporation. The following line "Snorin' when you slumber, Everyone knows you do," could be interpreted as the singer being aware of the sleepwalking conformity and blindly following the rules and norms set by the corporation. The line "Why won't you admit it, Screw you! And take it all" could be seen as a call to reject the imposed regulations and take ownership of one's actions and beliefs.

The next stanza talks about "force-fed integration from the corporation," which could be seen as a critique of corporate culture that pushes for conformity and assimilation to their policies and ideals. The singer rejects this "corporation attitude" and asserts their own beliefs and values. The line "I believe I will never leave your serpentine pad" could be interpreted as the singer acknowledging the difficult and inescapable nature of corporate control but refusing to let it dictate their lives completely.

The final stanza seems to revisit the idea of conformity and questioning authority. The singer advises the listener to "ask the grown-ups" (who may represent authority figures and those in power) if they have been "posed twice," which could mean manipulated or deceived. The singer then ponders whether there is something they would want to know but are hesitant to ask. The song ends on the repeated line "I believe I will never leave your serpentine pad," which could be seen as a reaffirmation of the singer's belief in their own individuality and resistance to corporate control.

Line by Line Meaning

Frequently called numbers
You are often contacted by many people.

Snorin' when you slumber
You snore when you sleep.

Everyone, knows you do
Everyone is aware that you snore.

Why won't you admit it
Why won't you acknowledge that you snore?

Screw you!
An expression of anger or frustration towards someone.

And take it all
Take everything, including the anger or frustration being expressed.

Force fed integration
Being subjected to an overwhelming amount of conformity or assimilation.

From the corporation
This conformity or assimilation is coming from a large, powerful organization.

I don't need this corporation attitude
I don't want to be part of this larger organization's views or ways of doing things.

I believe
I have confidence in what I am saying or doing.

I will never leave
I won't abandon what I believe in or the lifestyle that I have chosen.

Your serpentine pad
A metaphorical description of the lifestyle that the artist has chosen and finds comfort in.

Darling when you wake up
When you become aware of your surroundings.

Better ask the grown ups
Seek advice from people who have more experience or knowledge.

If they have posed'm twice
If they have asked you the same question twice.

Leave them and lead other lives
Don't let others dictate your choices, make your own decisions and live your life the way you want.

Think it might be another thing
There could be another issue at hand that needs attention.

That I would want to know but
The singer is curious but unsure if it's worth pursuing.

I don't know if I should
The singer is uncertain if they should investigate the other issue.

If I could
If it were possible or practical for me to do so.

And if I would any way
And if I did pursue the other issue.

Written by: Stephen Malkmus

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Comments from YouTube:

T Co

I think much of Pavements work was partly inspired as parody of anything and everything that can be contrived.

Sergej Lovrekovic

one of my favorite short pavement songs! <3


Often, I find myself saying with that snotty inflection, "I don't need this corporation attitude."

Elliot Ambrozich

pavement rocks

Claireabelle Wonderly

This song and Brinx Job are my two favorite songs on Wowee Zowee!

Jemzo Maclain

date w/ ikea is better than brinx job change my mind


kind of sounds like a parody of hardcore punk.


holy fuck! its been a while ........

Steven Napier

Sounds like Flipper

Orson Wels

malkm does a similar ting on tune grief

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