What does What A Catch, Donnie mean?

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Fall Out Boy: What A Catch, Donnie Meaning

Song Released: 2009

What A Catch, Donnie Lyrics

I got troubled thoughts
And the self-esteem to match
What a catch, what a catch

You'll never catch us
So just let me be
Said I'll be fine
Till the hospital or American Embassy
Miss Fleck said I still want you back
Yeah, Miss Fleck said...


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    Aug 9th, 2009 8:43pm report

    Pete was saying that this (amazing) song is about someone who thinks they are a loser or aren't good enough. If you listen to the lyrics that IS what it's basically about.

    (the video is amazing just like the song, i personally love fall out boy.)


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    Aug 29th, 2009 8:43pm report

    On the FOB website, Pete says to find out what this song means google donnie and flack. Donnie Hathaway and Roberta Flack were writing partners at one time and released several hits before Hathaways suicide in 1979. I think this song is about them, but also about the band themselves. The lines from their other songs being sung at the end could mean that although they have 'troubled thoughts and the self-esteem to match', none of those songs would have been written without it.


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    Jun 5th, 2013 6:32am report

    This song uses Donny Hathaway, who was Roberta Flack's writing partner before he committed suicide, in a symbolic manner. "You'll never catch us, so just let me be" means that the protagonist of the song is completely alienated from society. He feels no one will ever understand him, so he just wants people to leave him alone. "Said I'll be fine till the hospital or American Embassy" means that he is planning on either committing suicide or going on a rampage against society. "Miss Flack said, 'I still want you back'" means that people are willing to help the protagonist with his problems. "I've got troubled thoughts and the self-esteem to match" pretty much means what it says. "What a catch, what a catch" means that he realizes that this is a sad state he is in. "All I can think of is the way I'm the one who charmed the one who gave up on you" means that he screwed somebody over in his past and he regrets it.

    "They say the captain goes down with the ship, but when the world ends, will God go down with it?" furthers the evidence that the protagonist is depressed and thinking of death.

    After the second chorus, the covers of old Fall Out Boy songs by various bands indicate that the protagonist has accomplished great things in his life, but he feels that others will always usurp him.

    The line, "I will never end up like him, behind my back I already am, keep a calendar, this way you will always know," cements the fact that the protagonist stole someone's wife/girlfriend.

    Basically, the song is about a man who was very successful, but somewhere along the line he lost hope in his career, and was disheartened because he felt that others did his job better than he could have. He becomes depressed and alienated from society. He becomes a recluse who eventually commits suicide. The song vaguely mirrors Donny Hathaway's life.


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    Apr 14th, 2018 4:29pm report

    The song is actually referencing Pete Wentz's suicide attempt and is a promise that he won't attempt it again. The song talks about Donnie Hathaway to show the similarities between his and Pete's life. The line 'I will never end up like him' is Pete saying he will never attempt suicide again.


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    Mar 31st, 2015 3:56pm report

    This isn't a full interpretation (I think it's summed up by the suicide of Donnie Hathaway and Pete's feelings about it).

    "They say the captain goes down with his ship"
    this ties in to how they have several snippets from songs at the end. Those are what would be their ship, and they are tied to each other in that sense.

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