Time to Pretend (MGMT)
“Let’s go find models for wives …”
Carnival-go-round, a fake life, extras in suits handing us suitcases full of money, taking fake airplanes to fake countries, with the stagehands setting up the scenery as fake clouds fly beneath us, dancing around this set of paris, title card says “Five Years Later,” while makeup artists add wrinkles to our eyes, introduce us to our new co-star, an actress unspeakably beautiful who will be playing our wife — set up the hospital room, what a set, look at the special effects, here’s a little actor baby (secretly a twin getting switched in and out due to child labor laws) — go to the show, pretend to play guitar — get me more makeup, more wrinkles — funerals, life, real, pressing on all sides —
and one day you realize it wasn’t artifice, it was real, those places you went were real, the model girlfriend was a real human being, and the fake love you held was real, so sweetly real, and now its gone, and the wrinkles aren’t makeup they’re lines pressed into your skin that won’t iron out and the number of days you have left — well — less than 10,000 — now, less than 1000 — and was all this dancing worth it? Pirouettes on an ice covered lake in March — at least, you say, at least, there are fishes swimming underneath — your son smiles at you, surrounded by his strange new family — when did that happen? Love is what you want and need. Small comfort, maybe, but that’s the way it is.