This song takes on the topic of Alzheimer's disease and dementia - something Calexico songwriters Joey Burns
and John Convertino both had to deal with. Convertino's mother had Alzheimer's and died from the disease; Burns' grandmother was afflicted with dementia and didn't recognize him on her deathbed.
The last track on the Algiers
album, Convertino got the idea for the song after reading an article about death row inmates in California who have dementia or Alzheimer's. The article explained how other inmates are called upon to help out in these cases. This led to the theme of the song, which is about caring for others regardless of circumstance.