If you listen closely to the lyrics at the end: "It's crazy what you could've had," it can sound like "It's crazy what you couldn't have." (Apparently Michael Stipe sometimes simply makes up or distorts lyrics, which he does to great effect here). The feeling of these final lyrics gives some indication of the sense of desolation that pervades this song in almost every lyric and chord. It's about repetition in life and love, about failed relationships: "We've been through fake breakdown, self hurt, self help." It's on a continuous "maddening" loop, "feedback," and no matter how much you analyze a bad relationship with the aim to improving things, you just repeat the same things endlessly. "Junk Garage" is imagery of something discarded and worthless. "This flower is scorched" is an image of love (flower, a traditional symbol of love) which has been sullied. There is also some sexual imagery of "Honey Pot" which is an alluring, sexual attraction but ultimately unwanted. The "Paper Weight" is holding down something flimsy, again emphasizing the lack of substance to the relationship. "Plastic" emphasizes the artificiality of the relationship.
Gus - London, England