Writer. Warning: opinions. My lawyer advised a disclaimer, but didn't include any jokes to go with. Damned if I can think of any either.

Through the Paul Wall

Upon flopping exhausted into my sleeping pallet last night, having performed a non-cycling exercise event which shall go unnamed in order to preserve my reputation among Atlanta cyclists, I detected a certain longing in my stomach region. I have discovered after many long and quite fat years that giving my stomach what it wants is the road to ruin, so I decided to teach it a lesson and forcefully went to sleep, ignoring the rumbling noises.

My stomach got the last growl, however, when I was awake and very cranky at 4:00AM. You win this round, stomach, you fiend.

I attempted to regain transport into the land of cold beer and naked breasts where all of my dreams take place, but found myself instead listening to a murmured conversation between my neighbor Paul and an unknown female guest. This wordless conversation floated to me through the wall that serves as the divider between Manland and Paultown — or whatever he has named his apartment — which I call the Paul Wall.

No, not that Paul Wall.

Although I have inhabited this incarnation of Manland for nearly three years now, I haven’t heard much through the Paul Wall, except for a snippet of a Men At Work song a year or so ago. This floated through as I was sharing a moment of repose with a former girlfriend, who then began to sing all the wrong lyrics to said song.

Although I do not consider myself a fan of Men at Work’s entire catalog, the first piece of music I ever personally owned was theirs. My mom got me a Sony Walkman, complete with leatherette carrying case and shoulder strap, for Christmas. I immediately put it on and left the house, feeling the rush of simultaneously going somewhere and listening to music.

At the time, music was something that typically happened inside either a building or a car, so walking down to my friend Gray’s house with Men at Work toiling away in my ears was quite incredible.

Many years later, there I am, lying in my bed, talking at length about Men At Work and their albums for the edification of a girlfriend too young to have appreciated them in their heyday, and finding her nonplussed.

I even got up and quickly purchased the song on iTunes to help illustrate whatever my point was, and now it sits in my song list as a concrete 99 cent reminder that I should remember to just lie down and shut my mouth more often.

The title of the song is, of course, “It’s a Mistake”, and as I give it a listen I hope that everyone on the other side of the Paul Wall is feeling good and not trying to be right all the time.