If you fell out a window

This is perhaps one of the most insensitive songspeaks in Matt’s and my history together, but I feel it’s a songspeak that must be told.

Some may remember that in 1991, Eric Clapton suffered the tragic loss of his son when his son fell out the window of a 53rd floor apartment. I’ll start out by saying there’s nothing funny about this. At all. Eric Clapton wrote the 1992 ballad Tears in Heaven for his deceased son, and it was getting major airplay at the time. It’s still on the playlist on many mix and easy listening radio stations, and I think of this songspeak whenever I hear it.

Matt and I used to share an office when we worked together, and we’d have the radio on all day. Tears in Heaven came on once, and we both knew the origin of the song. The lyrics begin, “Would you know my name…if I saw you in heaven?” Well, apparently these lyrics weren’t good enough for Matt, who very sincerely sang along, “Would you know my name…if you fell out a window?”. His rendition may sound insensitive, but people deal with tragedy in different ways. Our way is to use humor to try to make light of things. At this point, the song was 7 or 8 years old, and we had kind of been desensitized to the entire situation that surrounded it.

We’ve definitely matured in the past 10 years, and don’t make light of death in quite the same way that we used to, due to many personal trials and tribulations that we’ve been through. And now, with a daughter of my own, I can’t imagine that I would find this songspeak all that funny, the way I did when Matt first sang it.

Be that as it may, this is one of the more memorable songstories for me, so I feel compelled to share it. Please don’t think less of us. We already know we’re going to hell.

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