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You and I

September 28, 2011

I appreciate many of the poignant songs from Five For Fighting’s John Ondrasik, and have since the early 2000s. My favorites are “Superman (It’s Not Easy To Be Me)”, “100 Years”, and “The Riddle”.

Superman sings about a person who who can do some heroic things, but he does not feel as powerful and perfect as people see him on the outside. Instead, he describes himself experiencing an ordinary man’s struggles to understand himself, to live up to expectations, and fulfill his responsibilities. I identify with the superman in the song and imagine many other people do too.

100 Years is about how time and life passes by so fleetingly. It truly does. Today I can relate to: “I’m 45 for a moment, The sea is high, And I’m heading into a crisis, Chasing the years of my life”. I think many people can identify with all the ages and circumstances mentioned in the song. The song talks to people.

The Riddle is about the meaning of life. Read the lyrics below…they are so deep and rich. In the song, John’s voice is so unique and he sings the song so poignantly.

There was a man back in ’95
Whose heart ran out of summers
But before he died, I asked him

Wait, what’s the sense in life
Come over me, Come over me

He said,

Son why you got to sing that tune
Catch a Dylan song or some eclipse of the moon
Let an angel swing and make you swoon
Then you will see… You will see

Then he said,

Here’s a riddle for you
Find the Answer
There’s a reason for the world
You and I…

Picked up my kid from school today

Did you learn anything cause in the world today
You can’t live in a castle far away
Now talk to me, come talk to me

He said,

Dad I’m big but we’re smaller than small
In the scheme of things, well we’re nothing at all
Still every mother’s child sings a lonely song
So play with me, come play with me

And Hey Dad
Here’s a riddle for you
Find the Answer
There’s a reason for the world
You and I…

I said,

Son for all I’ve told you
When you get right down to the
Reason for the world…
Who am I?

There are secrets that we still have left to find
There have been mysteries from the beginning of time
There are answers we’re not wise enough to see

He said… You looking for a clue I Love You free…

The batter swings and the summer flies
As I look into my angel’s eyes
A song plays on while the moon is high
Over me
Something comes over me

I guess we’re big and I guess we’re small
If you think about it man you know we got it all
Cause we’re all we got on this bouncing ball
And I love you free
I love you freely

Here’s a riddle for you
Find the Answer
There’s a reason for the world
You and I…

I can remember riding in the car with my son, Cody, coming home from a Cub Scout camping trip in October 2007 that was so cold outside I thought we were going to freeze to death. It was at a time when life’s meaning was in question as my marriage was dying an unwanted death, my heart was breaking, I was hurting so bad, my family was threatened, and my time and future with my children who I love so very much was both precious and uncertain.

The Riddle came on the radio. And I cried.

And ever since, as I did before, I put on my cape each day like I always have, fight the good fight, savor the fleeting moments of joy and pain, and passionately give my all. I can only hope it is enough. It will have to be. You and I are the reason we’re here. There is no other place or purpose. As Jesus and so many other loved ones before us showed us, you and I are worth it all.

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