This is about a Japanese fan who wrote a letter to lead singer Rivers Cuomo after hearing Weezer on the radio. Cuomo responded to her letter with this song.
In this song, Rivers tells of his obsession for the Japanese fan who wrote the letter. "...So I sniff and I lick your envelope and fall to little pieces every time. I wonder what clothes you wear to school, I wonder how you decorate your room, I wonder how you touch yourself and curse myself for being across the sea...."
Cuomo says they never met, stating: "Even if I did see her, she was probably some fourteen-year-old girl, who didn't speak English."
Suggestion credit: Joseph - Salt Lake City, UT
Rivers Cuomo was asked by Kerrang! magazine June 21, 2008 if the Japanese fan ever realized the song was about her. The Weezer frontman replied: "Yes, she knows it's her. When I wrote the song I took her letter and I literally lifted lines from the letter and put them in the song, so she actually collects royalties on that song."
The album is named after a character in the opera Madame Butterfly. The album is loosely based on the opera, which is about an American military officer who goes to Japan and falls in love with a geisha.
The laugh heard at the beginning of the song comes from drummer Pat Wilson.
Cuomo wrote this while studying at Harvard University and recovering from a leg surgery. The strength of this song inspired him to shelve the rock opera/musical Songs from the Black Hole and develop Pinkerton, instead.
Five years after this song's debut performance, Weezer brought it back to their setlist for the 2002 Japan World Cup Tour to satisfy the overwhelming fan requests.
Jeff from Austin, TxWhat a great song!!! I swear Pinkerton seems to sound better and better as each year passes.
Jessie Ann from Purchase, NyHah, In response to what Chris said below me, I would see how this song could make him turn red years later. Imagine the fan who wrote the letter listening to the album and saying "gross!!" haha
Chris from Scranton, PaTo this day, Rivers is embarassed of the extremely personal lyrics he wrote for this album, one of the most notable being "..I wonder how you touch yourself..." Wondering about how someone you've never met before masturbates is in no way something I'd want the public to hear. This is easily Weezer's most angst-ridden album. I think it's brilliant anyway.
Meg from Worcester, MaRivers has a slight obsession with Japanese people. It's all good.
Robert from Berkeley, CaHere's what I've gathered about the whole head-shaving deal. Rivers Cuomo grew up in a hippie Connecticut town called Yogaville. Rivers, his brother Leaves, and his mother and stepfather all lived on an ashram run by the guru Sachia Ananda.
Here's a quote from the LA Times:
" Misfit teenager Rivers Cuomo, aimless and depressed, decided to join a Buddhist monastery.
"I went to my parents' Zen master and I said, 'Life is [expletive], I want to shave my head and do this,' " Cuomo recalls.
"He's like, 'You know what? Being a monk is [expletive] too, so I can't advise that for you. What you should do is really listen to yourself and see what path would make you the most excited and just go do that, however crazy it seems.'
"And it took me about five seconds and I was like, 'I want to be a rock star.' "
Charlie from Somewhere, Camaybe he thought older women liked bald guys...cuz most older guys are bald.
Matthew from New York, Ny I'm still looking for someone to explain the whole section about being 10 years old and shaving his head so older women would like him. When someone can explain that, I'll be satified.
Melissa from Buffalo, Nyohhh yea pinkerton is one of weezers best albums