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"Mike and Jon, Jon and Mike—I've known them both for years, and, clearly, one of them is very funny. As for the other: truly one of the great hangers-on of our time."—Steve Bodow, head writer, The Daily Show

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"The good news: I thought Our Kampf was consistently hilarious. The bad news: I’m the guy who wrote Monkeybone."—Sam Hamm, screenwriter, Batman, Batman Returns, and Homecoming

September 28, 2005

What I Do With My Time

When I first heard the They Might Be Giants song "Particle Man" many years ago, I was dissatisfied. As excellent as the song was, I felt the three verses weren't enough to make it artistically complete. Specifically, it needed two more verses right in the middle.

I sent "brain waves" to John Flansburgh and John Linnell to encourage them to expand the song in this way. The results were negligible. So, I was forced to come up with the additional verses myself.

These lyrics were long thought lost to history. However, I just found them in a box. Here they are:

(Added verses are in bold. You'll enjoy this much more if you sing it to yourself.)

Particle man, particle man
Doing the things a particle can
What's he like? It's not important
Particle man

Is he a dot, or is he a speck?
When he's underwater does he get wet?
Or does the water get him instead?
Nobody knows, Particle man

Triangle man, Triangle man
Triangle man hates particle man
They have a fight, Triangle wins
Triangle man

Testicle man, testicle man
Spreading the wealth with both his hands
Finds the eggs sacs in the sand
Testicle man

Has some orders just for you
Has a plan you must see through
Won't shut up until you do
Ex why man, testicle man

Intellect man, intellect man
Shiny hope from another land
And brand new cell all spic and span
Intellect man

Love machines to fly down there
Guns to shoot off all the hair
Lose on all fronts everywhere
Who's the man, intellect man

Triangle man, Triangle man
Triangle man hates intellect man
They have a fight, Triangle wins
Triangle man

Universe man, Universe man
Size of the entire universe man
Usually kind to smaller man
Universe man

He's got a watch with a minute hand,
Millenium hand and an eon hand
When they meet it's a happy land
Powerful man, universe man

Person man, person man
Hit on the head with a frying pan
Lives his life in a garbage can
Person man

Is he depressed or is he a mess?
Does he feel totally worthless?
Who came up with person man?
Degraded man, person man

Triangle man, triangle man
Triangle man hates person man
They have a fight, triangle wins
Triangle man

Posted at September 28, 2005 02:41 PM | TrackBack

Actually, Jon, I have more fun imagining *you* singing the extra verses. Good show!

Posted by: Aaron at September 28, 2005 04:57 PM


How about "Ana Ng" as a retelling of the Ann Coulter-Pat Tillman romance?

Posted by: Sully at September 28, 2005 08:13 PM

Those are great lyrics you "found", Jonathan. They make life in world of scalable, enterprise level solutions easier to understand.

Posted by: Harry at September 29, 2005 05:27 AM

Internet man, internet man
Cools the world with a virtual fan
Thinks matter is an also-ran
Internet man

Has a digital sun to shine during the night
Has a digital brain to tell him he's right
But is he still there when you turn out the light?
Logical man, internet man

Posted by: plover at September 30, 2005 08:38 PM

What is that song about, anyway? Not being anthropocentric, since the universe certainly isn't? Only a happy land twelve times per trip around the eon hand? Why do your verses fit?

Posted by: Noumenon at October 5, 2005 11:27 AM

Disaster man, disaster man
Shows up whenever disaster's at hand
Brings a wrecking ball and a marching band
Disaster man

Hands out butterfly nets when the locusts attack
Sets up detour signs to turn flood waters back
If the sun explodes, he'll paint the windows black
He's got a plan, disaster man

Posted by: plover at October 7, 2005 07:33 PM