blatantly bad 70s songs: escape (the pina colada song) (rupert holmes)

if you don’t want to hear this, go get drunk and escape.

escape (the pina colada song) is the last hit of the 1970s and the first hit of the 1980s.  (if i had realized this at the dawn of that decade, i would have crawled into a cave and waited for the 1990s to come.) it didn’t start out as a monster hit; most people didn’t get it when it was simply called escape. but hell — they knew the pina colada part, so some smart record company stiff added (the pina colada song) and the song went like gangbusters.

i couldn’t drink (legally) at age 14 when this song came out. i didn’t like wussy songs that talked about getting caught in the rain or some froo-froo coconut concoction. i liked the cars; i liked blondie; i liked the police; i liked tom petty and the heartbreakers. in short, i liked things that either rocked or gave me new wave chills. this song did none of the above; it merely seemed like a monotonous radio death march, accessible for married people over 40.

now that i am a married person over 40, i come to this song with a new appreciation. well, maybe appreciation is not quite the word i’m after. annoyance, i suppose. i mean, think about it: if i was dissatisfied with my beloved spouse (AKA BS) and i put a classified out there in the world looking for Mr-Right-Take-Two (in the manner that the singer, a passive-aggressive bastard who can’t actually talk to his girlfriend about their relationship, did); and if i went to that smoky bar and found out that the ad had been answered by BS, would i be laughing with BS about the fact that we have so very much in common? would i be thrilled that the classified had brought us together?

hell, no. i’d be calling up a lawyer.

gee whiz, if i were writing a classified ad to this song, i think it would go something like this:

if you like drinking mojitos,

watching my name is earl,

if you obsess over music

know divine‘s not a girl.

if you think sushi’s overrated

and you love a mixtape,

i’m the lady you’ve looked for,

come with me and escape.

then they’d be playin’ my song.

19 Responses to “blatantly bad 70s songs: escape (the pina colada song) (rupert holmes)”

  1. I actually heard this yesterday (and wondered if it would make you list!) GOOD ONE. Oh – one to recommend, too: Hot Butter’s Popcorn?

  2. I really listened to the lyrics on this one for the first time while cleaning out the minivan earlier this week. Holy cheatin’ bastards! They were made for each other. Yeh, a disgusting song.

    Hope you’re feeling better already!

  3. First of all – I hope you are on the mend!!

    Second of all…for some reason I always loved this song..loved it while fully wallowing in all it’s badness. I’d way rather be singing this all night than that other damn song you got stuck in my brain!! Yes, they be cheatin’ fools all right. But at least they are not singing about never being to me. Bleargh.

  4. And apparently all he has to say when his wife walks in the bar is, “Aw, it’s you!” Now if I were writing this song (or someone with a better-developed sense of irony, like Randy Newman or someone), his wife would walk into the bar, say, “Aw, it’s you!”…and keep walking until she takes her seat next to her date for the evening, her Fabio-esque paramour.

  5. I am so glad you brought this up, I too hate that part of the song when the girlfriend (his “lady”) says, “Ah, it’s you.” Hahahaha Yeah, right!
    I like your ad better.

  6. Your re-writing lyrics to popular songs reminds me of this book I’m reading: “Such A Pretty Fat,” by Jen Lancaster.

    Hope you are recovering rapidly from the surgery.

  7. Enjoyed your whack a the pina colada song. Check out my evisceration of the same here:

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