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Lyrics Series, Pt. 1: “from “Queen Bitch”

Oh God, I could do better than that…
But it could have been me
Yes, it could have been me

On the surface, “Queen Bitch” is a lament about a flamboyant gay man, or possibly trans person, of whom the narrator is jealous. But the song boils over with a sense of ambition and commitment towards achievement that transcends the immediate subject matter. I do not aspire to look swishier than the object of this song’s envy, and I don’t regret that she took home a guy who could have been mine.

But what do I think when I see some piker who had the guts to do what I was too self-conscious to even attempt? I could do better than that…yes, it could have been me. I’m not an envious person, and I think envy is only the gate of entry into the narrator’s motivation — I actually think it’s self confidence. Like Joan Jett singing, “I Love Rock and Roll.” She’s so enthusiastic that she sings ahead of the music, like she can’t wait to say how much she loves rock and roll. Bowie, here, is raring to show the world what he’s got. I can relate.

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