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It's so cliché. I've heard it a thousand times, the phrase has become so worn that it comes automatically. And still I see the sentiment as something remote and abstract, nothing I've never known personally. This is a lie, and an unfortunate one. I have two divergent aspects that branch off from my central personality.

One doesn't make too much of a burden, happily skittering about and mumbling to himself when there's no one else to rush with hurried words. He finds me amusing, somewhat boring. He thinks he can do anything, all the possibilities are open to him. He has a thousand plans and beliefs, so many it's almost overwhelming. He can't sit still for two moments, tapping his feet, twiddling his fingers and grinning like a fool. He is confident, charming, and just a little dangerous. He is not me.

The other weighs down like an oppressive winter day, sullenly drifting from one task to another with obviously little enthusiasm. He despises everything about me. He feels trapped and surrounded, choked up with claustrophobia over seething, fetid hopelessness. He never wants to do anything again, for fear he'll screw up just one more time and tip the tower of stupid mistakes into an irrevocable collapse. He makes eye contact with no one, stares at his feet, stares anywhere to keep any possibility of relief from reaching him. He is shattered, unpleasant, and a good deal more dangerous. He is not me.

I can know these two people, remember every single thing they've done. Yet I feel like I have no control. They could be entirely different individuals as far as I'm concerned. There is no physical sign of it, yet the me everyone knows will be obliterated, replaced by one of these two shady characters, and then poof!, I return again. I am responsible for what they do, because there are me, but I am still not myself. All I can hope for is that those I affect will have the maturity and love to understand. If not, it is no blame to them. Only myself.

John Mayer begins the song with simple, subdued acoustic guitar. The chords could almost be upbeat. Almost. When he gives his voice, it is tired, withdrawn. This man is hopeful, but not for much. He only has as much energy as necessary to lightly lullaby you into calm. The addition of further guitars and rhythms reinforce his resolve, but there's still weakness in him. His brave face is barely holding up. The insturments crescendo and soften in reflection of his pleas, nearly to the point of desperation. He can only ask for your understanding.

Suppose I said
I am on my
best behavior

And there are times
I lose my worried mind
Would you want me when I'm not myself?
Wait it out while I am someone else?
Suppose I said
colors change for
no good reason

And words will go
From poetry
to prose
Would you want me when I'm not myself?
Wait it out while I am someone else?

And I,
in time,
come 'round
I always do
for you 

Suppose I said
You're my saving grace?

"Not Myself" can be found on the album Room for Squares, number twelve. It was written by John Mayer.

The above lyrics run to 85 words. The analytical content stands at 442 words. In concordance with E2's new copyright policy, this fits within the guidelines for fair use. Questions, concerns, or objections; please message me and I will reply as soon as possible. CST Approved!

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