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The Statler Brothers – Flowers On The Wall lyrics

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    When I was a kid, I thought this was just a silly song about a guy wasting time. For some reason, the song came to me, and I looked up the lyrics 'cause I couldn't think of them, and it was driving me crazy.
    Even before I looked up the complete lyrics, it occured to me that this is about a guy that's seriously depressed and his friend (probably his girlfriend and they are broken up now, and that's why he's so depressed) is concerned about him. He's not really "counting flowers on the wall", etc., he's telling her to buzz off. He's been locked in his room for so long that he can't stand the sun light. He says he "dressed in tails," yet he knows he "looks a fright." He's not been taking care of his grooming while he's been holed up in his room.
    The friend has good reason to be concerned about him, and he's telling her to get lost in a round about way.
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  • u
    Actually, this song is about a man in a mental institution. "Counting flowers on the wall" is counting the buttons on the wall of a padded cell. "Playing solitaire to dawn with a deck of 51" is him telling us that he knows he is crazy and not playing with a full deck. "Last night I dressed in tails and pretended I was on the town" is a reference to wearing a straight jacket with the straps hanging down the back like tails on a tux. "My eyes are not accustomed to this light. And my shoes are not accustomed to this hard concrete" is telling us he is kept in the dark padded cell where he is not used to light or hard objects.
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  • u
    I wouldn't say that this song is figurative or be so melodramatic as to say he is depressed or in denial. I would say that the lyrics tell of a man who has run into his former girlfriend (or ex-wife) by chance. She expresses her concern for his happiness since they parted, and he implies that she is not really concerned about him, but this is just her "conscience" that's bothering her. He says for her and her friends not to worry about him become he is content (either truthfully or that's what he wants her to believe) with the way he occupies his time. He spends his nights in his room staring at the walls, counting flowers (probably a design in the wall paper). Playing solitaire over and over when he can't win because he's missing a card, and yet this is still entertainment to him. He smokes cigarettes and watches a kids tv show - - it’ s something to do. He also tells her that by pretending, he can imagine he's out on the town having a great time so he doesn't want her sympathy. Then he says it’ s good to see her, but he has to go because he used to being in his dark room (most likely a small apartment) where he usually doesn't wear his shoes to go outside much. He admits he looks a fright, but he's happy with his nightly routine of being by himself and doing what he wants. It sounds to me like a temporary period of self-imposed hermit behavior after a break-up, but in time, he will probably get over her and move on.
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