Sunday, May 8th, 2011

A mondegreen for you to ponder today from the song “Jack and Diane” by John Mellencamp, who was then known as either John Cougar Mellencamp, or maybe John Cougar; he was changing his name so often back then that I lost track:

Gonna let it rock, let it roll
Let the Bible Belt come and save my soul
Hold on to sixteen as long as you can
Changes come around real soon, make you swim in a van

I know he’s not really saying that, but it’s all I can hear. In my defense, vans were considered to be the cat’s ass by everyone I knew back when this song was popular. The coolest people drove vans as big as garden sheds, exteriors airbrushed with dreamy Frazetta knock-offs of big-breasted nekkid chicks, insides carpeted wall-to-wall-to-ceiling and back down the other wall. The ones that didn’t have king-sized beds in them had bars or Lay-Z-Boy recliners and, if memory serves, some had hot tubs, none of them big enough to swim in but, still, the seed of the idea had been planted.

When I asked My Darling B to finish this part of the song for me she couldn’t remember it off the top of her head, but right after listening to it on YouTube (there is nothing you can’t find on the internet) she immediately noodled out the correct lyrics, “Changes come around real soon, make you women and men,” which make a lot more sense than mine, although I’m probably going to sing mine until the day I die.

Jack and Diane | 11:56 am CST
Category: entertainment, music, My Darling B, O'Folks, play | Tags: ,
2 Comments | Add a comment


  1. 1 Fact Checker said at 12:49 pm on May 8th, 2011:

    I think that’s “make US women and men.”

  2. 2 Dave said at 4:15 pm on May 8th, 2011:

    Maybe … but the line right before that is, “Hold on to sixteen as long as YOU can.” Also, this is pop music, in which grammar rules rarely intrude on a song lyric.