I really like the song “Let’s Just Be Friends” by Alex Lewis. If you’ve not heard it before, you can listen to it here and if you’re not in the mood to listen to it, essentially it’s about a man who ends up in several intimate situations with women (e.g. cuddling in bed) which he incorrectly reads as sexual, when really they’re just being especially friendly. He gets annoyed with them saying “Let’s just be friends” to him and then ultimately ends up saying it himself to a woman he finds unattractive after a drunken one night stand.
Either the song is very clever or enormously hypocritical. When I read the comments of people who enjoy listening to it, I think they obliviously have a hypocritical view on it. The fact that he ends up saying “let’s just be friends” himself makes it seem like it’s quite a clever commentary on people who complain about that phrase, but it’s hard to be sure. I try not to worry too much about the authorial intent and just enjoy the fact that it’s a nice sounding song.
What I find quite amusing is that I have been in several of the same situations as the person singing the song, but I have never thought that I was in a romantic or sexual situation. People should be less afraid to be particularly affectionate with their friends. My original plan for this blog post, in fact, was to write a parody of the song, but it actually turned out so bad that I didn’t want that to be published – hence this analysis.
Ultimately, the character in the song is somebody who does not appreciate their friendships. “I’m going to staple a sign to my head that says, ‘I have no interest in being your friend!'” and that’s a shame because friendships are actually very valuable and a source of great emotional contentment. In fact, I think the phrase “Let’s just be friend” alone reflects a lack of appreciation for friendship, because saying you are “just” friends with someone implies that it is somehow lesser, when in fact friendship is a fantastic end in itself.