Interpreting Where is My Mind by Pixies

I do some really good thinking when I take my dog, Rusty, for walks. It’s usually when I get the most focused listening of podcasts or music done.

A few days ago I was listening to my Covers playlist on a walk with Rusty when Trampled by Turtles cover of Pixies Where is My Mind began to play. I can’t count the times I’ve listened to Surfer Rosa and that song in particular, let alone the cover. But for some reason I was much more dialed in to it. Perhaps a cover version that includes mandolin and accordion drew me in more.

The scribbles above came to my, um, mind as I listened, then re-listened on the walk. And then I started to consider Black Francis’, or Frank Black’s if you like, sparse lyrics.

“With your feet in the air and your head on the ground.” This is about changing or having a different perspective. Seeing things differently.

“Try this trick and spin it. Yeah!” And don’t just have a different perspective. Take some action with it and further the perspective change, learn how to do something new.

“Your head will collapse. There’s nothing in it. And you’ll ask yourself. Where is my mind?” Now here is where I started thinking a bit more deeply about this. The “mind” is a concept, the bringing together of a person’s beliefs, faith, intellect, ideas, opinions. Why would a head collapse without a “mind”?

It is because the mind is what defines who we are. It provides the strength for the brain to truly support our head. Think of the mind as providing the steel girders to support the surrounding structure of the brain (and the head in these lyrics). Without the mind, we all just have some gray matter between our ears.

So if you attempt to change your perspective without having an open mind, your head will collapse because there is no support to consider and try to understand what it is that you’re seeing and hearing. You can’t learn new things.

“Way out in the water. See it swimming?” And not having a mind to support new perspectives puts you out to sea, leads to confusion, or maybe even anger. And as the mind is a concept it can’t be seen, swimming or otherwise. And, thus, more confusion. And, further, it becomes easier to not change perspectives and learn.

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