What does Smile Like You Mean It mean?

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The Killers: Smile Like You Mean It Meaning

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Song Released: 2005


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Smile Like You Mean It Lyrics

Save some face, you know you've only got one
Change your ways while you're young
Boy, one day you'll be a man
Oh girl, he'll help you understand
Smile like you mean it
Smile like you mean it

Looking back at sunsets on the Eastside
We...

  1.  

    goodgal
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    May 22nd, 2009 5:15pm report


    To me the song is saying that when young people grow up and start to become mature.. love and life get more challenging and harder to understand.



  2.  

    cammy052
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    Jan 23rd, 2009 1:06am report


    this has no interpretation, but this is my all time favorite song...ever! it's about love and saving yourself for the one you love. it's incredible how much this song means to me



  3.  

    anonymous
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    Dec 14th, 2008 12:01pm report


    Well, I think it's about growing up and moving out of home and leaving and when you've left (anywhere) nobody ever cares what was there before



  4.  

    anonymous
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    Nov 6th, 2008 11:19am report


    Odd. A good friend of mine pointed out how thi song draws parallels to the novel The Great Gatsby. In the story the protagonist witnesses how fake everyone in the big city really was. How they all put on the facade of being happy when in truth no one was really satisfyed with their lives.
    There are numerous allusions. From 'watching the sunset in East Egg' to being called from a restaurant, of course the car accident, and how the dream Gatsby had of being with Daisy slip away



  5.  

    anonymous
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    Aug 6th, 2008 8:21am report


    This song seems up to much interpretation and re -interpretation, but one idea I came up with is a rather odd divorce situation, which explains itself in a mon-chronological order.

    "Save some face, you know you've only got one
    Change your ways while you're young"

    He's telling his children to be good people, even if he's not going to be in their lives so much.

    "Boy, one day you'll be a man
    Oh girl, he'll help you understand"

    His wife is going to be with another man, but he is assuring them he is a good man, will help them.

    "Smile like you mean it
    Smile like you mean it"

    'Treat your to-be-stepfather well, care about him, don't resent him. When you smile at him, mean it.'

    "Looking back at sunsets on the Eastside
    We lost track of the time
    Dreams aren't what they used to be
    Some things slide by so carelessly"

    This bit is directed to the wife. He loves her a lot, and once had so much fun with her, and he feels he neglected her, and the dream isn't their anymore.

    "Smile like you mean it
    Smile like you mean it"

    He doesn't blame or resent his wife, and wants her to do the same and appreciate he did care about her.

    "And someone is calling my name
    From the back of the restaurant"

    His life with his wife. I think they ran a restaurant together, and he is remembering that life with her. Alternatively, he's remembering dating her where he'd show up later than she did and she call out for him.

    "And someone is playing a game
    In the house that I grew up in"

    He's known his wife since he was a child, they grw up together, were friend, and eventually they fell in love.

    "And someone will drive her around
    Down the same streets that I did
    Down the same streets that I did"

    He knows the other guy will love her as much as he did.

    "Smile like you mean it
    Smile like you mean it
    Smile like you mean it
    Smile like you mean it"

    He wants everyone, especially his wife, to be as happy as possible and like each other.

    "Oh no, oh no no no
    Oh no, oh no no no"

    Subconsciously, he is terrified and can't believe this is happening to him. He loves her so much and wants her to be his.

    ...Now I feel sorry for this guy. :(

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway


  6.  

    gabasystem
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    Mar 20th, 2008 3:58am report


    Save some face you've only got one
    Change your ways while your young
    Your rep is important in this world, so hold your head up high don't soil your shoes and air dirty laundry. Learn and change now we are all one bad decision away from disaster.

    Smile like you mean it.
    Fake it till you make it. People always tell me to smile and it pisses me off. I have learned that smiling actually does improve your mood and I intimidate people so it makes for an easier passage. DBT. taught me this.

    These are proverbial sunsets as we get by day to day our dreams our lost and late change. Careless mistakes are made by all. We track of time because it speeds up. Someone is calling my name from the back of a restaurant- people from the past pop up- this has happened to me- keep that face on- Someone is playing a game in the house I grew up in and someone is driving my daughter down the same streets that I did, it's my daughter who is 15. I have taught her the message in this song. Oh, no,..... Scared, and hating that smile like you mean it is good advice.



  7.  

    anonymous
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    Mar 13th, 2008 3:13am report


    Well, judging by everyone else I'm really off, but I took it as he was dead and looking back on the people that fill our place when we're gone, as if we were never there



  8.  

    anonymous
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    Oct 17th, 2006 10:54pm report


    I agree with a lot that's been said already. The part where he says "change your ways while your young, boy one day you'll be a man, oh girl he'll help you understand" is my favorite part. He could be saying that by taking things slower you won't pass up so much good and you'll learn more and save some "face" or reputation.



  9.  

    anonymous
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    Jul 25th, 2006 7:03am report


    I agree with all of you..This song is about breaking up..And I think he's trying to say that sex isn't everything and a relationship should be a partnership. Hes talkin about how people change in relationships..And the smallest things are sometimes of the biggest change.."smile like you mean it" either reffers to him tellin the girl that she should smile like she means it cause he knows she's not happy..Or to himself that he should get on with things..Orrr both!?



  10.  

    killersfan12
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    Mar 8th, 2006 3:27am report


    This may seem wierd but this is what I think:
    The narator has been giving the kids advice on relationships,"Save some face, you know you only got one" meaning don't go through relationshipd too fast then everyone that you've been with will add up and not be good. So by taking it slowly you'll enjoy it longer, then through the whole song he explains y how he went too fast and now he regrets it and see's his ex with another and grows jelious.



  11.  

    sg
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    Jan 10th, 2006 1:39pm report


    Sorry taggy, but I think you're a bit too caught up in the Jenny, Andy, Michael, Natalie so-called conspiracy.



  12.  

    sam1990
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    Dec 30th, 2005 12:37am report


    Yer, I agree with you, I don't think all of the songs on the album have to be about Jenny or Andy or whoever. I think it's just about looking back on the good old times!



  13.  

    prongs666
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    Nov 29th, 2005 11:17pm report


    I think he's remembering good times while in bad and he is pretty much saying remember the good times...



  14.  

    anonymous
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    Nov 29th, 2005 11:43pm report


    About a relationship that ended and the regrets/memories a person has. The struggle with seeing your ex with another "Someone is playing a game in the house I grew up in....." It's about the other person moving on and the pain of letting go whilst trying to remain cheerful "Smile like you mean it."



  15.  

    taggy87
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    Nov 4th, 2005 11:44pm report


    Andy tries to be happy for Jenny. "Drive her around the same streets that I did" -Jenny's new boyfriend takes her out to the same places as Andy did.

    This interpretation has been marked as poor. view anyway


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