Amanda Palmer - The Point Of It All Lyrics

Oh, what a noble, distinguished collection of fine little friends you have made
Hitting the tables without you again: no we'll wait, no we promise, we'll wait
June makes these excellent sewing machines out of common industrial waste
She spends a few days at a time on the couch but she says
She wears shades, she wears shades

But no one can stare at the wall as good as you, my baby-doll
And you're aces for coming along
You're almost human, after all
And you're learning that just 'cause they call themselves friends
Doesn't mean they'll call...

They made the comment in jest
But you've got the needle
I guess that's the point of it all

Maybe a week in the tropics would help to remind you how nice life can be
We propped you right up in a chair on a deck with a beautiful view of the sea
But a couple weeks later we came back and you and the chair were nowhere to be seen
You had magically moved to the closet
Eyes fixed to the place where the dryer had been

Oh, but no one can stare at the wall as good as you, my baby-doll
And you're aces for coming along
You're almost human, after all
Why on earth would I keep you propped up in here when you so love the fall...?

The pattern's laid out on the bed
With dozens of colors of thread
But you've got the needle
I guess that's the point in the end

But it's better to waste your day watching the scenery change at a comatose rate
Than to put yourself in it and turn into one of those cigarette ads that you hate
But while you were sleeping some men came around
Said they had some dimensions to take
I'm not sure what they were talking about but they sure made a mess of your face

But still, no one can stare at the wall as good as you, my baby-doll
And you're aces for playing along
You're almost human, even now

And just 'cause they call themselves experts
It doesn't mean sweet fuck all...
They've got the permanent press
Homes with a stable address

And they've got excitement
And life by the fistful
But you've got the needle
I guess that's the point of it all

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Amanda Palmer The Point Of It All Comments
  1. joey manson

    All my lovers have been jealous of my affections for Amanda since She appeared.
    In conclusion. Theyre all gone and i still have Amanda and Her wonderful compositions.
    No regrets. "Sweet fuck all."🎵

  2. Gretchen Logan

    the great thing about art is that it speaks to each person individually. being a heroin addict myself if course that's what I got from the song. however regardless of what I get from it, or even what she wrote it to mean, that doesn't invalidate the meanings other people get from it.

    every single one of her songs touches me more than any other music I've heard, and it makes me feel part of a community to see other people saying the same thing. thank you Amanda for your beautiful words and music. and thank you to everyone else for simply being who you are


    From what I understand, Amanda was dating a heroin addict at the time she wrote this. Like many of her songs, she uses her own life as material for her songs. So yeah, I think you got the point of it all.

  3. Mammon

    Help your addicted friends and family before it's too late.

  4. Ron Ruddick

    Isn't sexuality dependent upon sex and qualia?

  5. Space Punk

    listen on 1.25

  6. Olivia Braccio

    "And you've learned that just 'cause the call themselves friends doesn't mean that they'll call--they made the comment in jest." Most profound line in the history of recorded music.

  7. Anna Banana

    In spite of the needle metaphor, this song always reminded me of two friends that are battling depression, and of myself in phases where I just watched life go by (instead of taking the thread, or life, into my own hands). I never really thought of the boy I was in love with a few years ago, who was battling all kinds of addictions, until I read the comments below. I guess that's what makes a great song, it brings forward what's on your mind the most right now.

    Anna Banana

    So what this song did for me right now is that it showed me that even if I still think about him and worry about him, I'm at peace with the decision I took, that I'd be the bitch who wasn't ready to be strong enough for two in the long run. But these two friends of mine, I'll never stop wondering if "maybe a week in the tropics..." and coming to check on them several weeks later is less than I should have done or do

  8. Raven Devino

    This song still hits me hard, even a year after my bf died of an overdose. It frames the regret and sadness, and longing perfectly.

  9. tobbaddol

    Lots of discussions about the meaning... But my main question is, what does the racist part have to do with anything?

    Dana Morales

    tobbaddol - I think it’s you’re aces not you’re racist

  10. handcarved

    Is it just me or is this song, astronaut and runs in the family all connected??

  11. Σργψ Δφυ


  12. RiffRaff654

    one of my favorites!

  13. Raven Devino

    having lost someone to drug use, the last verse kills me every time

  14. King Savage

    this art!!!!

  15. handcarved

    2017 anyone?

  16. Kevin McKinney

    Got a slow player. Got a sturdy needle. Have not... no records like this,

  17. KTnarnia

    I posted a live version of this song in 2007 on my channel. Just go to my channel and search "Point of it All" - it's actually a pretty incredible live performance. I prefer it over this studio recording. But this is a great song!

  18. handcarved

    thank you amanda for creating and writing.

  19. Kris Atkinson

    Fell in love with her and this song at the Boston Pops-- what an incredible evening!! Watch her vamp here with Keith:

  20. Evan S

    never lost my significant other to dope...been clean myself just over a year, and ive "died" 20+ times over 14 years....listening to all sorts of songs that have to do with heroin overdose lately since 13 people i know have died from it this year. i thought going into 2016 being clean from heroin would be a lot easier...turns out i was wrong.

  21. NerdNr5

    Think that's her best song. Anyone disagree?

    Modern Moonlight

    It used to be my favourite now I can barely stand it. xD

    My favs moved deeper to "Me & Minbar", "Trout Heart Replica", "Glass Slipper" and " Mary Surgeon" being my abolute favs.


    I agree with "Me & Minbar", Delilah has hold of me atm.

  22. Meredith Pack

    This is such a fucking beautiful song.

  23. Sher Peters

  24. AllThatKazz

    Oh my life.
    I love you.

  25. causabon99

    I saw Amanda palmer on YT speaking on TED. She was brilliant. Unfortunately she is not a good singer. I could imagine her speaking poetry, but she really is not cut out for singing.

    David Kitch

    +causabon99 : what the fuck do you know? palmer is an great singer that"s why she's on YT ,&and your not.


    Don't get in a flap. I've said my piece. Oh - and why would I want to be on Youtube anyway?

    Charley Anderson

    +causabon99 I love her TEDtalk so much. I also love her music, but her voice isn't for everyone. To me the lyrics matter more than her sound, and all of her lyrics are pure gold. Also, sorry about her less polite fans. :P

    Kinky Wombat

    Singing is about more than technical ability.  There's no doubt Alexandra Burke is technically a much better singer than Leonard Cohen, but who sings Hallelujah better?  Nick Cave has a voice like a box of anvils, but he's brilliant.  I wouldn't want to listen to Amanda Palmer singing opera, but nor would I want to hear Maria Callas singing The Point of it All.

  26. Daniel Fleet

    I think it is about trying to care for someone who is an alcoholic.

    Daniel Fleet

    +N LM On reflection that makes much more sense than my theory... Thanks! :)

    Daniel Fleet

    +N LM I 100% agree. I must say, I am fairly new to her fanbase. I found her through Life Is Strange, and I have fallen in love with her, I watched her talks at Google lately and she is so insightful and beautiful. She has such an enlightened view of the world and I am so happy she has come into my life, some of her songs have made me laugh and some have made me cry. As a musician, I am so inspired by her, her composition and lyricism is just so special.

    Daniel Fleet

    +N LM Wow, thanks for the insight dude. I am so sorry to hear about you and your troubles. Just remember that, although I am just someone on the internet, I care about you and your well-being, you are amazing and intelligent and awesome, stay rad.

    Michelle Everett

    Me too. My lifelong friend died that way, with help. He was so unhappy. I love him so much it hurts to think of him, after years... it still hurts. He had 3rd degree burns over more than 1/3 of his body. He was a wreck. He kept begging me to drive the 16 hours to see him and my car (and wallet) could not make it happen. I love you so, Shawn. I'm so sorry.

    David Bobst

    actually it's about heroin addiction.

  27. Myslexia

    The song is about heroin addiction. She dated a heroin addict. Interpret it however you want, but the metaphor is obvious.

    April Smith


    Zack Stillwagon

    Lexi Flowers been thinking that for years, love the it, more relevant than ever in my life

    Jamie DosSantos

    Lexi Flowers What's interesting is the needle thing is not even close to the only obvious heroin methaphor. "No one can stare at the wall, as good as you...", etc. Even the sewing kit thing is an obvious heroin kit metaphor. She definitely dated a hardcore user who carried his kit with him at all times. I agree, completely. It's great that people can relate other meaning to the lyrics, but it's very obvious what she was emotionally reacting to, here.


    ...even more so when you lived it

  28. Ken Johnson

    seems to be about caring for someone who is an addict and watching them slowly deteriorate . I guess everything is open to interpretation, but that's my take away based on personal experience.

    Ken Johnson

    *helplessly watching despite best efforts to the contrary...I might add.

  29. Talitha Byrne

    In all honesty this song reminds me of when I used to make a lot of suicide attempts. All I had to do to get/stay out of hospital was stop. I was the one in control, but when you refuse to exercise it, they make you do what they want until you chose to. It really is a beautiful way of pointing out to those of us with invisible illnesses that we're the ones who can fix it. All anyone else can do is either try and make us see it will be worth it in the end, or y'know, call in the 'experts'.

  30. TropicalFrog

    Eyebrows on point

    Cryin' Bryan

    +Den A always

    But Why


  31. tealicecrecone

    gg been listening to this song for 6 years now. M9.


    Same... longer than that now... if you have felt this hurt in your own life, it does not go away and is always relevant. And she captures that hurt perfectly.

  32. Alex Ella

    The more I listen to this the more I think it could be her singing to herself.

  33. Alex Ella

    I'm sure people hear different things in this.

    But I hear a story about a person who was never treated as fully human that people talk about like they aren't there... that feels trapped and can't fit into people's boxes and be people's narrowly defined "successful."


    Like an addict, being treated less than human because of their disease.


    It's so cool that people are amazing and smart enough to see so many different things.

  34. Chris Vaughn

    Everybody is entitled to their own interpretations. That is one of Amanda's greatest attributes in her lyrics. The same words appeal to everyone in individual ways from unique perspectives.
    This song speaks to me from the point of view of somebody who bears the weight of the burden of wanting to help somebody who has been deeply hurt by something in life that has robbed both of them of the happiness they each deserve.
    The needle represents the scorn, anger, and betrayal that builds a wall preventing the subject from accepting help and moving on.
    The frustration of seeing somebody stuck, scared to take any step towards finding happiness, and endlessly pushing away a valuable resource that could make all the difference.

  35. Mr Eclectician

    I just get more and more impressed, involved, depressed, with every listen of every lyric of every song. Thanks for the music, the pain and the beauty of it all.


    Every time I dip into Amanda's catalogue I am amazed...

  36. Brooke Benzing

    she is one of my favorite wine drinking partners lol..

  37. Ulri

    I never found this to be about drugs but about depression. All the talk about needles is just that, real actual needles. It's a metaphor for how professionals and friends and everyone can give you help (i.e. threads and patterns) but you have the needle, you are the one who has to do the getting better bit, no one can sow your life back together if you don't do it yourself.

    Salman Ravoof

    Thank you. I can enjoy the song better now.

    Lisa Heckrotte

    I look a it as both. the needle (drugs) can rip your life apart and that can be all your life is about. Or a needle can be used to put yourself in control of organizing your life in the way you want it. As a former/recovering addict I have a sewing machine tattoo (partly because I love to sew) but also because I have the needle. And at the end of the day that is the point of it all.

    Wonderful how our personal experiences can make things meaningful in different ways.

    (Also, I know this comment is years old...but I figure if I'm reading it now perhaps some one else will read this later).


    I would agree, however it is most definitely about drugs as well. If you do your research, this song is about someone in her life who was a drug addict, and it is much more personal for her then you might realize.

  38. Envious Green

    This is a REAL piece of work!

  39. avalonspawn

    Some people are confused by the line "she wear's shades, she wear's shades, she wear's shades." How I interpreted that was the common sewing references, and the mention of shades of thread, as if she was sewing multiple layers of clothing as a way to build a metaphorical wall/mask/etc around her.  Which would still work with the drug usage, since the needle was responsible for helping to build this wall that shuts other's out.

  40. April Smith

    it's about drugs .. the men making a "mess of your face" drugs dealers, in a "comatose state" ... i'm sure you could hear however you want but im pretty sure it's about loving someone whose an addict

    Matt Sinden

    ive seen lyrics saying "at a comatose rate". But in any case the meaning is subjective to each person that hear it. thats what i love bout this sad song.

    Jason Embrey

    @Matt Sinden she definitely says "watching the scenery change at a comatose rate"

  41. ushiuni82

    Heroine abuse,depression,Internal loneliness,Isolation,Suicide That is what this song means to me.Its one of the worst feelings, trying to help a loved one but not being able to get them to stop there self destructive pattern, its heart breaking watching them slowly kill themselves from the inside.

    Michelle Everett

    Yes beating the hell out of female heroes is a terrible thing.
    H E R O I N

  42. Shae Bendell

    I personally think it's about have a depressed person in your life...I know it's the obvious meaning, but it just speaks to me that way. My mother is severely depressed and has attempted to take her life several times and this song just describes life so well at times. The part about going to the tropics when everything's going well but there's still the lingering fear of the person suddenly spiraling down into the black hole of depression. There's always the fear, love, distrust, and pity that is expressed so well in this song.

  43. mortic0n

    Yep. I do. :/

  44. Matt Layne

    I think we all know someone like the one depicted in this song.

  45. Autumn is a Witch

    Amanda tweeted the other day that this is about 'an ex of hers who died'.. so there's SOME clarity!

    Dana Morales

    wino-witch Autumn - I definitely get a sense that the person died at the end of the song. So sad but beautifully written

  46. Sweet Patoni

    Yeah!, I love that movie. The video is a lot like May, even when she put the needle on her chest.

  47. Gill

    I don't think this is about a former relationship at all? Seems directed at a woman. A lot of her songs seem to be actual songs, thoughts and feelings, not just rehashing relationships, which is so refreshing! Regardless, they're all so real, she is herself and an artist in every song!


    Hope I can be half the artist she is one day <3

  49. kgirl

    Well she's in a healthy marriage now. Some of her songs are about past relationships, some aren't. They're still good :)

  50. bobdobb1088

    I've only seen a couple of her videos but there might be a theme. Here she seems to be writing about a former boyfriend who was a heroin addict, in another video she was expressing fear of lack of communication in a relationship. She seems fearful of healthy relationships?

  51. Amberly Ashhes

    I thought so until I really looked at the lyrics, it could of been simply inspired by the movie or about a comatose lover who previously gotten himself into a lot of trouble.

  52. ElleBeatrix4991

    Amanda sings with such an expression that I find myself in her songs... I just know she feels exactly the same way we all feel. As if she was my best friend, knowing all my secrets, all my soul, I must say. Hardly ever can any artist be so close to the listener.

  53. Julie Crawford

    I always find her songs difficult to sing.

  54. elemist2

    or heroin. i agree completely

  55. necrolet

    I'm PRETTY SURE it's about morphine addiction.

  56. AbbyNormal777

    Just happened upon her, when I haphazardly googled the term.."Olly Olly Oxen Free" & now I have a soundtrack to my breakdown..

  57. lydia young

    i actually wondered if it was about having an important person in your life who was autistic

  58. coinoperatdrandy

    God, this song can so easily bring me to tears

  59. Thiefree

    I have a similar range; it's so nice to have an artist I can sing along to!

  60. Ashley E

    How does she sing so low!? She is the ultimate alto. definately my favorite singer.

  61. Shannon Van Liere

    I feel like if you combine her and Tim Burton.. my life would be complete.

  62. Dra Western

    I started listening to AFP a few years ago when I got the 'Who Killed Amanda Palmer'. Dermot O'Leary played one of her tracks on Radio 4. I fell in love with her back then and listened to that album for years. It was brilliant. Now I am loving Amanda Palmer Goes Down Under.

    All of her videos are class and add to the songs, not like these 'pop' videos nowadays.

    As much as I would love for her to be the most popular musician on earth, I like being one of the few that have had the pleasure.

  63. valenweknow

    WHen she's ripping off the curtains... it's the most beautiful scene<3

  64. LiarpieVicinityFTW

    I love you

  65. Dally Shallow

    well gets pretty gross so if you're not into bloody stuff stay away.

  66. StandOutSheep

    I just read the plot on Wikipedia. I am entertained.

  67. Tomguild1

    The impulse to make it go away, thru suicide or dope, is the same. Oblivion is what she doesn't understand the hold, She knows the attraction but she is still a bit blown away by her friends self destructiveness

  68. Dally Shallow

    yup. saw that movie a few days ago. definitely are some parallels

  69. Marky Balls

    Does anybody else see the clear references on this video to the film "May" by Lucky Mckee?

  70. Christi Stensland

    Just because a songwriter might not know what they write about doesn't mean that it's not meaningful. Sometimes you don't know what you wrote about until you're already done. And Bohemian Rhapsody is meaningful, too, however fruity and theatrical lol. I'm not even a fan of Queen but I know there's more to that song than "hur hur guy with funny voice!"

  71. Tomguild1

    There ae those who just cannot deal. It isn't their fault. I had a friend who just could not make it outside of a rehab or halfway house and she believed she couldn't go on living with her addiction. She couldn't live with out it. She did it so that only her best friends knew it was intentional. I hope she found the peace she sought

  72. Tomguild1

    Yeah. I did notice Amanda and Freddie ( RIP) are and have been different people. Wow, you noticed that also?

  73. Dahlia Vaffanculo

    The two aren't all that far apart either way--both are self-destructive behaviors.

  74. Dahlia Vaffanculo

    This isn't Bohemian Rhapsody, dude.

  75. Dahlia Vaffanculo

    8 people just don't have good taste in music.

  76. Tomguild1

    Songwriters do not always know what the song is about. If it is right, it comes to you and you are as much in mystery as anyone. Amanda is a fucking genius

  77. Karate Kid Junior

    It's also about suicide and depression... Just so you know.

  78. Karate Kid Junior

    She says thread...

  79. Summer Rush

    I believe it's 'dozens of colors of thread'. Not to be rude or anything, I agree that it's about heroin addiction!

  80. Kieran Shook

    There are two things that a song can be about. There's the what the artist says it's about which is the literal. And there's what it means to you, while she says it's about an ex boyfriend addicted to heroin you aren't wrong because that's what it means to you and that's perfectly valid.

  81. Nyx

    every time I listen to this song I cry. Not just a couple of tears, like properly cry.

  82. recklessragdoll

    '..dozens of colours of THREAD'. Red is only one colour. ;-)

  83. Sarah Foster

    she makes the piano sing, i love it.

  84. Devlin Baker

    I haven't listened to many songs as painful as this one.

  85. mmmfff

    I think it's actually: "Dozens of colors of thread,"

  86. SnapKase Seth

    I'm falling in love with Amanda.She's such a brilliant artist.

  87. carlalayne

    Why do you feel the need to debate what she said in an interview? You're certainly entitled to your opinion, but that's what she said... I mean, it's not like the needle she's talking about is holding the piece of thread you're referring to.

  88. Chelsea Lowe

    Pretty sure it's "dozens of colors of thread." Not red. She even holds up thread.

  89. fractalplay

    Incredibly poignant. No pun intended.

  90. Ryan C. Robert

    Right?! It's so awesome. This is hands down my absolute favorite song in the world. And one of the only ones that can make me cry every single time. Amanda Palmer's one of the only artists that can actually do that to me.

  91. Ryan C. Robert

    It's not an interpretation haha. Amanda Palmer said that the lyrics are "dozens of colors of red." Though, it's probably technically both "red" and "thread" (as there are plenty of artists who do that. And then, depending on the live performance, they choose which word to sing.) as red goes with the literal definition of the song and thread goes with the metaphorical definition. When I listen to it I relate it to my own anxiety every single time and think "thread", but that's my interpretation.

  92. ComusUmbra

    You know, no matter what it means this song still makes me cry every time I hear it. I know what it means to me, and what I think about when I hear it, and that's the point of it all...really.

  93. Valeria Evans

    Yeah, this song is probably about heroin, since she, you know, said so, and I can relate on that literal sense. But anyone can relate to loving someone who just wants to keep destroying themselves. This song is just so beautiful and sad, yet it comforts me somehow.
    When I met Amanda I was too nervous to say anything. She gave me this look of "What the hell?" I wish I could have told her how I've been a fan for eight years and devour everything she writes, but oh well. ;)

  94. Ephringael

    TL;DR version

    Get off your lazy ass and do something about it.

  95. Caitlin Ratliff

    I don't know. I think what I always take away from this song is something hopeful. Life can suck, really, really bad. Everything seems wrong, no matter how hard you fight it's just an uphill battle and there's no end in sight. You can either sink into all that sadness and hopelessness, and stare at the wall thinking about how awful it is, or you can change it. You can fix those horrible, sad things. It's your life to change. You have the needle; that's the point of it all.

  96. Rhys Baldwin

    actually its dozens of colours of thread

  97. anditspaganpoetry

    This song really helped me in high school when my life kind of fell apart. What I take from it, is that it's about loneliness, and feeling hopeless and becoming self destructive (or watching someone you love become self destructive) - which I guess ties into Amanda's literal version of her heroin addict boyfriend.

  98. Bridgy McFly

    ...okay, this is really haunting. first time listening to this song and right as i read those lyrics, she sung them....cried

  99. Daniel Arey

    This is one of the few songs in the world that can make me cry... Her voice is too beautiful!

  100. Rhys Baldwin

    @i4gotmysn i think there really cool :)