Regina Spektor: Man of a Thousand Faces Meaning
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Man of a Thousand Faces Lyrics
Sits down at the table
Eats a small lump of sugar
And smiles at the moon like he knows her
And begins his quiet ascension
Without anyone's sturdy instruction
To a place of no religion
Has found a path to our...
anonymous Sep 27th 2018 report
Look up the book "the hero of a thousand faces" by Joseph Campbell.
anonymous Feb 16th 2012 report
You guys, it's about Doctor Who! "Man of a thousand faces" "eats a small lump of sugar" "smiles at the moon like he knows her" etc. all point very clearly in that direction to a dedicated fan of both Dr. Who and Regina Spektor such as myself. Probably not to anyone else, though...
anonymous Dec 9th 2011 report
Yes, it's always about a man who understood important meanings of life and keep em for himself!
Love that song!
anonymous Dec 8th 2011 report
Those interpretations are quiet different but always have something in common I guess… According to me, the "man of a thousand faces" lived enough to be able to fool people, in a way. He can presents himself as a simple guy who just eats his lump of sugar like so many others do (I do..), and he probably does those kind of simple things often without anyone noticing it. But then, next to that, he can do what he wants. When he judges that something has a slightest interest (and it might not happen a lot), he makes it his own not caring about what people might think if they happen to witness it.
At the end, that man knows the ups and downs of life and smartly understands the way things work, people work, and all those things he learned, he uses them to make people leave him alone. Living his life the way he wants and hiding it, as if it was some kind of a criminal thing to do in our society.
He pretends a lot, and then winks at the moon which changes herself so many times without ever stopping to be what she is, as if he was saying “I know you know, my friend…”
Very special song you listen to once, then twice, then 10 times with a smile as if this guy was this man you see every day, or if it was you a little. You laugh at what he does, but there is something kind of sad in his reality, don’t you think ^^
anonymous Jul 17th 2011 report
I always thought it was about a man preparing to die. The lump of sugar would be his last memories of Earth. The song follows very quickly from young-adulthood where the moon is a stranger, to an older gentleman, who views the moon as a stranger; past tense. He rips out his favorite pages; memories. From the bookstore, and once he eats the sugar; he will have a sweet memory to last him until his ascension to the moon.
anonymous Jun 7th 2011 report
I see him eating some acid and ascending in his mind. He has discovered poetry and that life is suffering and now understands the human condition. Our alikness.
anonymous May 23rd 2011 report
So, I'm not sure what Regina Spektor intended the song to be about, but when I listen to it, I see this perfect music video in my head of an older man who has cancer. He used to go about his life thinking more about the physical things (what is FACT), and the flashbacks to when he was young and healthy show that. But after he got cancer, he started to think more about the spiritual things. When he "smiles at the moon like he knows her" I see it as symbolic of his acceptance that he will soon be leaving the world. Possibly his "quiet ascension" is him actually leaving, making it an out of body experience, looking back on his life. When Regina Spektor sings about how "good is better than perfect" it kind of describes how the man isn't ever going to reach perfection in his imperfect body, and none of us ever will, no matter how hard we try. It seems like she is calling us to realize that we need to accept this about ourselves.
Once again though, this is just what I think of when I listen to the song. It's a beautiful song :)
anonymous Apr 27th 2011 report
I am not too sure but I think it is about a man who is never what he seems to be. A man who lies and cheats to make people think he is something that he is not. But when he saw what his life was like he didn’t like it very much, and tried to hide the things he did with good things.
But as I said I am not too sure
Love the song though
anonymous Mar 1st 2011 report
I think this song is about a man who has tried to make himself seem perfect. He changed himself to fit what others wanted, and to earn a place in life. He didn't realize he was hurting those around him, until he had no one left to hurt.
anonymous Dec 6th 2010 report
i think the song is telling the story of a man who lived on the fast track for too long but finally realized the beauty of life...the simple things in life. for example "eating a small lump of sugar" or "smiling at the moon like he knows her" but it also says "he used to go to his favorite bookstore and rip out his favorite pages and stuff them into his breast pockets and the moon to him was a stranger..." i think this is saying that before, he never stopped and looked at the simple life. he wasnt connecting with the little things. (the moon,etc.) but now "he begins his quiet ascension without anyones sturdy instruction"...he no longer has to live by anyone elses rules..hes free from the limitations and goes to a place of no religion....and he now lives his own life the way he wants.
I think the song is about a man who lives alone but isn't particularly unhappy with that aspect of his life and is happy just to settle into a nice state of daydreaming. His personality is not the type that meshes well with others so perhaps that's a reason why he's alone. He's very soft spoken, he has sloppy tendancies, he has a very gruff nature about him, and he can be somewhat of a hypocrit. He's not necessarily mentally sound and he has some very strange habits such as going to bookstores and ripping pages out of books and keeping them. Throughout all this, he's still happy in his life because his mind takes him away from reality into a place where he's comfortable.
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