Guitarist and principal songwriter Paul Waaktaar-Savoy said in publicity materials that this song was a happy accident. He explained that the idea came to him spontaneously when he called home from Russia and was greeted by his answering machine. Waaktaar-Savoy added laughing, "As a joke I started singing away and this song fell out. I meant every word, though."
The Boyz II Men hit "It's So Hard To Say Goodbye To Yesterday" is an a capella cover of a song from 1975 by G.C. Cameron that was used in the movie Cooley High to express the feeling of parting ways with high school friends.