Giant Robot Album

by Hello, The Future!

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credits

released June 25, 2013

Music and lyrics written by Nicole Dieker of Hello, The Future!
Arrangements written and performed by The Long Holidays.
Recorded by John Axtell at Sunburst Recording.
Mixed at The Signalhouse, LA.
Mastered by Mustin for Mustin Enterprises, LLC.
Album art by Jade Gordon.

The Long Holidays are:

Jim Holmquist – guitar
Andrew Worshill – bass
Kevin Engelking – piano
Shaun Garnie – trumpet
John Higgins – drums, percussion, theremin

The Long Holidays would like to thank Jenny, Andrea, Stephanie, and Anthony. Nicole would like to thank Kickstarter and all of her project backers. This is for you. <3

hello-the-future.net
thelongholidays.com
sunburstrecording.com
signalhouserecording.com
mustin.net
jadegordon.com

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Hello, The Future! Seattle, Washington

My name is Nicole.

My band is Hello, The Future!

I am the only person in my band.

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Track Name: Giant Robot Song
Back in summer camp
On the first day they sat us in the picnic yard
And they told us that fine arts camp was very hard
And that all of us would have to practice very hard

And they told us if we wanted to get work someday
We couldn’t play our pop music or draw anime
Because those things weren’t important in the real world
You know that fine arts camp is all about the real world

And I’ll never forget
They took this one kid’s drawing of a giant robot
And they told him to stop wasting his time
Get in line
Focus on perspective
So we practiced hard, and yet
We met in secret to perform the Final Fantasy opera
We knew they’d say that we were wasting our time

Then in undergrad
In our classes they told us what was good and bad
It was good if it had meaning and was serious
And nothing good had been produced that wasn’t serious

And they said that every time we made a song or play
There should be some deeper meaning as a takeaway
So the audience would get up and go stop the war
Or decide that social justice was worth fighting for

And I’ll never forget
The way they denigrated anything reflecting pop culture
How they said it was a waste of our time; we should
Get in line
And focus on perspective
But they didn’t seem to get
That to make meaning first you have to go and make a connection
Otherwise you’ll just be wasting your time

I’m not even going to make the old argument
About Mozart being part of pop culture
Or Dickens being part of pop culture
Or Shakespeare being part of pop culture

And how it all kinda changed with the friggin’ Rite of Spring
And the subsequent decision that art was a very very very very serious thing
And it wasn’t for everyone
It was cultural broccoli
(You know I actually kinda really like broccoli)

Then in graduate school
When I said in class the internet had changed the rules
That the new artistic culture was the internet
And that people who made art should use the internet

With Web 2.0
It took the job that theater started all those years ago
And gave us ways to make connections with an audience
There were so many ways for us to reach an audience

And I’ll never forget
They told me serious performers didn’t use the internet
And they told me to stop wasting class time
Get in line
Focus on perspective
And my assignment for next class
Was to restage a Restoration play in 1960
And I knew that I was wasting my time

We should have been making things from the start
We didn’t have to stop drawing those giant robots
We should be using all our time
To connect the lines
And focus on creation
And sure, not all of it will be art
But the important thing is to make a connection
And that means you won’t be wasting your time

So here’s to the kid who got his giant robot drawing torn up on the first day of fine arts camp.
I hope you kept drawing.
Track Name: The Swan's Name Was Ingrid
The swan’s name was Ingrid
I read that book eleven times
Eleven times
On Sunday afternoons
When I had nothing else to do
But sit and memorize the details
Of the worlds in which I wish I lived and more than that the authors’ lives that wrote them
Oh

My World of Balance
World of Ruin
World of early mornings
Getting up to take a fearless dip into the Serpent Trench
And afternoons in Arden taking notes of all the words I didn’t know
With just two ages down and five more left to go
But all those hours stacked like bricks before the person that I wanted to be
Time to turn the pages
My house was big my world was small so it was waiting for me
Maybe I’ll read that book on more time

My robot armor
I put it on before I left my room
My little room
The clunky legs and clumsy arms were poorly made
But inside was the only thing I thought was true
I couldn’t share myself with anyone with any place with anything except the world I made
Written in the pages
Of the books I read and stories wrote and music that I practiced and played
When I had nothing to do but time

Back then I thought I read the alethiometer by grace
Back in my slanted room with books around me
I thought I knew that I already knew enough to be
The person I envisioned
Hello the future, with me
And Anne and Emily and Jane and Jo (like all those heroines a variation on a theme)

Instead I got myself a finished book, a guitar,
And a dream
Instead I got myself a tiny little window
On a screen
Yes me and everybody else

And I heard Crono speak
I beat that game eleven times
Eleven times
The summer I spent clearing plates
And thinking I was paying dues
And if I studied and applied myself
I’d be admired for my thoughts and work and worlds that I’d created from my mind
Turned to words on pages
All the truth I’d ever learned in secret passages that someday you’d find
When you would read my book one more time

Back then I thought I read the alethiometer by grace
Today I learn to read the alethometer by work
The work of a lifetime
But I have nothing to do but time
Track Name: Not Blue Anymore
I was not very pretty that year.
But I was out of debt
So on that nameless Saturday between when Martin died and when Jesus was risen
I bought my guitar.
I was not very busy that year.
I took myself to parks
And as I learned They Might Be Giants songs I thought how sad it was that no one could sing them with me
And now here we are

And I practiced till my fingers cracked
And by the time they healed
I had a name and an ambition
And the whole thing was realer than real
It was the person I wished I were
And it was the person I wanted to be
And it was a way for me to prove
That I was worth having someone listen to me
And now you do
And I’m not Blue anymore

And now when people sing along with me
They sing about how
Every dream we have, if we all work hard, can become our reality
If we put on the role
The song they sing along with me
Is all about the game
And how we all can learn the rules and put on different clothes and become who we think we ought to be
As we work towards our goal

And we cover over all the cracks
And we do our best to play
We make a name for our ambition
And we practice and practice and practice every day
I became the person I wished I were
And it was the person I thought I should be
And it was a way for me to prove
That I was worth having someone listen to me
And now you do
And I’m not Blue anymore

It came faster than I could have ever imagined
And also not fast enough.
I booked shows, I played ships, I stood outside singing The Legend of Zelda to people who don’t fight nerds
Every day for a hundred weeks.
And yet it wasn’t enough
It wasn’t enough
It wasn’t enough
I always played secondstage.
Even in this case

I know I seem a bit ambivalent
That half-diminished chord
Is like a super-secret music joke that I have to explain and now isn’t funny
But please understand.
For two years I’ve been building this
And I know who I am
And also know that what I’m doing right now is remarkably making money
According to plan

And since this plan’s begun to crack
I don’t know what I should do
To drop the name but keep the ambition
Right at the moment when everything’s coming true?
It was the person I wished I were
And it was the person I thought I should be
And I’m not at all sure I’m enough
To write a song and have someone listen to me
But now you do
And I’m not Blue anymore
Track Name: Paper Cranes
I spent last night
Trying to fold paper cranes
To forgive you
But I’m really kind of bad at handicrafts
And all my cranes turned into
Little wads of paper

I didn’t even get to the part
Where I blew them up with my angry breath
And sent them flying about a foot-and-a-half across my room
To forgive you

I pictured my windowsill
Filled with crane after crane after crane after crane after crane.
To prove that I was the type who could give and forgive and forget and release all the
Pain, I guess
But it’s not pain that I’m feeling, it’s more like a thirst for revenge
And I really want to text you
What happens at the Red Wedding
I really really really really really want to ruin your year

And I’ve done all the right things
Like I deleted you from my twitter
I mean I pulled you from the list of people I actually read
But I haven’t got to the point where I’ll unfollow you

I’m saving that for when you
Finally get 10,000 followers
Because as soon as you announce it,
You’ll only have
9,999

And by then I’ll have a windowsill
Filled with crane after crane after crane after crane after crane
To prove that I am the type who can give and forgive and forget and never
Complain, I guess
That you told me you loved me and then told me you’d become bored.
And I really want to text you
What happens with Tyrion and Shae
I really really really really really want to ruin your year

But as you know
I won’t do any of that
Although it would be so easy
You can’t unsee a text
Which you of all people should know
And I’ve spent way too much time
Working out if I could spoil
Game of Thrones Season 3
In a single text
Saving room for the words
Now We’re Even

I watched the YouTube
But I still can’t make my corners fold
And I never get my creases very straight
And all I’m left with is a
Pile of wasted paper

I didn’t even get to the part
Where I got to try to forgive you
Because as it turns out, I can’t make a paper crane
To save your life

Which means I’ll never have a windowsill
Filled with crane after crane after crane after crane after crane.
To prove that I am the type who can give and forgive and forget so I have to
Explain, I guess
Why I wrote you a song as a promise that you’ll never see
Me ever try to text you
That Sam becomes a f**king slayer
I’m not the kind of person who will ever try to ruin your year
And that’s forgiveness.
Track Name: I Like Coffee
I like coffee
I like eggs and I like Brussels
Sprouts and beets and also donuts

I like coffee
I like writing songs and taking walks
And hanging out on Twitter

Time to get up
Time to go to yoga practice
Take a shower
Drink some coffee

I like coffee
If I don’t put sugar in my coffee
I can have a donut

I like robots
I like science, I like math
And words and nerds and monkeys and robots

I like SoBe Lifewater
Nutritionally-Enhanced Hydration Beverage
I like lentils, I like chickpeas
I’m not sure I like rice all that much

But

I like coffee
I like hiding references
Inside my songs like Easter eggs
Also I like eating eggs!

And

I like coffee
I like you and maybe you like me
You wanna get a coffee?
Track Name: Blue Wears Jade
Blue wears jade
Because a woman named Rose told her
That jade would give her an extra life
She didn’t believe it
She didn’t believe that it would break before she did
But when she tumbled down the stairs the beads all snapped
And every year she buys another necklace

Blue keeps moon days because
A woman named Faith told her that
Well, you don’t practice yoga on the full or new moons
She didn’t believe it
So far removed from science she couldn’t see it
But she keeps the faith, and every fourteen days she rests
But not of course in savasana
(That’s a yoga joke)

Blue wears jade
After all these years
On airplanes
Even though she knows there’s no correlation

Even though the science doesn’t make sense
Even though she’s sure that she knows what’s right
Even though she knows that if it worked, then everyone would wear it
Well, still she does it
And doesn’t know why

And when birds fly
Blue crosses her legs and makes a wish
On a flock of flying birds
She doesn’t believe it
She knows it’s ridiculous, but somehow she needs it
Just a sidewalk pause, an ankle cross, a thought
And no, she won’t tell you all what her wish is

And Blue prays
After all these years
On airplanes
Even though she knows there’s no correlation

And Blue makes jokes because
A woman named Deb told her that
The most serious people of all were the best at making people laugh
She didn’t believe it
She had all this depth, she wanted people to feel it
But somehow that never worked,
So here’s a song instead
I hope you liked the verse about the birds

Yes Blue wears jade because
It’s awfully pretty, and
You know, that extra life thing just might be true
She doesn’t believe it
But it’s part of her story now and it’s too late to leave it
And her fourteen broken necklaces are proof
Well, at least, I mean, they’re proof of something

Even though the science doesn’t make sense
Even though she’s sure that she knows what’s right
Even though she knows that if it worked, then everyone would wear it
Well, still she does it
And she’s still alive
For now.
Track Name: The Woman Who Loved Reality
This is a story about a woman who loved reality
You might know her.

The woman who loved reality
Only believes in actions
You can feel whatever you want
But she values what you do

And when you say you’re sorry because you wanted to do something
She knows you may be sorry but that you didn’t really want to
No you didn’t really want to

The woman who loved reality reads fiction sometimes
But she spends a lot of time exploring gears

The woman who loved reality wants you to know
She hasn’t been a girl for the past eleven years

The woman who loved reality goes to Maker Faires
And plays roller derby

The woman who loved reality
Is taking public transportation
To the library while she’s scanning through her phone

For all the conversations
That she gets to be a part of
In the interconnected human network
And at the same time while she gets to be left alone
She doesn’t mind being alone

The woman who loved reality doesn’t believe
That the existence of God is a relevant question

The woman who loved reality wants you to know
That the size of her body isn’t a subject worth mention

The woman who loved reality knows how to code
And she won’t give you her public key

The woman who loved reality
Knows that no one loves her
And past collected data suggest that no one will

But she’s got a lot of friends and there’s just so much to explore
And so her calendar is filled
And her life is mostly filled

The woman who loved reality believes that honesty
Is the only way to help two people sort out what to do

The woman who loved reality can fix a sink
And fix a drink and fix a router but she can’t fix you

The woman who loved reality will be at Dragon*Con
But she’s not planning to cosplay

The woman who loved reality
Still gets surprised when she’s reminded of how much time has passed, and she knows that the
Paradox of infinity and finality
Means we’ve got to make everything we’ve got last
Before it disappears forever, we’ve got to make it last

The world exactly as it is is all the world we've got
And everything is interesting
The whole world is just so interesting

And life's so short to understand it,
Life's so short to understand it.

This was a story about a woman who loved reality
You might know her.
Track Name: The Endless Summer of Adulthood
Meredith had the upstairs room
She didn’t have a bed
Laura was across the way
Elizabeth was downstairs on the couch

There was an office space but
None of them had ever had an office
Tanya took the office space
For fifty dollars off her rent

And she hung Christmas lights
And Laura saved for her operation
And Meredith wrote songs
And Elizabeth waited for Michael to call
And told herself she wouldn’t call him first

Meredith rode the bus for hours
To play her songs at bars
Laura answered phones all day
Elizabeth was stuck behind a counter

Tanya kept the kitchen clean
And spent her morning sending resumes
She still hoped that she could find
A job that matched up with her dreams

And they joined up each night
And Laura told stories of harassment
And Meredith packed CDs.
And Elizabeth wondered why Michael had asked
Her to move when he didn’t ever ask to see her

They made it through week by week
And somehow paid the rent and
Waited for something to change
They were so good at waiting

They sat in t-shirts and shorts
In the October moonlight
Lit by a porch light and phones
In the endless summer of adulthood

When Tanya’s mother called the house
She asked how things were going
And if Tanya had yet thought
To walk her resume door to door

And why the landlord hadn’t fixed the broken screen or leaky faucet
They paid so much in rent
They shouldn’t let things like that go

And Tanya agreed to avoid a fight
And as soon as she hung up
She cursed and then she cried.
And Elizabeth came back from work and
Tanya said “do you think your place would hire me too?”

They made it through week by week
And somehow paid the rent and
Tried hard to make something change
They were so good at trying

They sat in t-shirts and jeans
In the November moonlight
Lit by their laptop screens
In the endless summer of adulthood

Michael had to be at work at 9 a.m. now
He knew she knew that
He knew she knew that
And she knew she couldn’t stay he couldn’t sleep when she was lying next to him
And because of that it felt
Like every night she asked if she could come over for just an hour
For just an hour
But his only hour.
And every weekend she asked him what they were going to do
But it was his only break.

Laura made it through eight hours
With voices in her headset
Telling her a list of failures
She could never overcome

Tanya didn’t get the job
She thought she might go back to school
Meredith’s father said he’d pay
For her to give up and come home

Elizabeth said to them all that night
It isn’t that I want Michael to change
He can do all the things he does
I just need him to choose
I just need him to choose
I just need him to choose to include me.

They made it through week by week
And somehow paid the rent and
Wondered why things hadn’t moved
When they were so good at moving

They sat in t-shirts and jeans
In the December moonlight
Lit by their fading dreams
In the endless summer of adulthood
Track Name: Pay It Forward
It’s morning so you check the world
You read your messages and see
The way that you are going to shape
The way today is going to be

There’s so much work that can be done
And you’ll take everything you have
And pay it forward
And pay it forward

You’re running faster than the burn
You’re throwing money in your way
You’re hoping you can fund tomorrow
If you work all night today

You turn your dream into a plan
And you’ll give everything you have
To pay it forward
And pay it forward

To build a watch requires time
To build a song requires hope
That you can manage all the pieces
And not lose track of the scope

There’s so much work that must be done
But you’ve got people on your side
Who pay it forward
And pay it forward

You don’t want to let them down
Because they’re carrying you
They’re carrying you
And every day you tell your story
So they can see what you are doing for love

You hold responsibility for
So much love
So much love

You carry the banner now for
Doing what you love
There’s too much meaning there

You maybe trust what falls apart
Or back a project that will fail
Not everything you’ve kicked will start
And sometimes dreams can get derailed

But every day’s another day
And you’ll take everything you have
And pay it forward
And pay it forward

It’s morning so you check the world
Track Name: Skeptic Love Song
I know love isn’t real
It’s just the oxytocin we produce
To help us get close and reproduce
Which I don’t want to do right now, but thanks

And you can’t trust what you feel
Because our neurons can be manipulated
As science has repeatedly demonstrated
Which kind of throws into doubt the whole veracity of our personal thoughts and opinions, but

I know that when we signed up for the skeptic frame of mind
It meant we had to look at everything from rational perspectives
And I know that all the research says that everything behind this
Has less to do with me and you than with a species-based short-term objective

And I know you and I are on the side of the scientists
But scientists fall in love too
Even though they know it isn’t strictly true

So:

I’ll love you till the heat death of the
Universe; until the galaxies collide
In four billion years or
Till we fall into the sea
Which could be next week

I’ll love you till my loop becomes estranged
Until my mind becomes deranged
And when it does just put us out of our misery, please.

I know love really means
I like your genes
So take them off

I know love really means
I like your genes
So take them off

I know love isn’t real
It’s just a biological imperative
That we construct into a narrative
Which you do so freaking well, by the way

And you can’t trust what you feel
Because inputs come and rearrange our stasis
And yes, people change
But change is inevitable.

I know that when we signed up for the skeptic frame of mind
It meant we had to say goodbye to paradise and ever after
And I know that all the research says that you and I will find the way
To hurt each other like we never dreamed we’d do

And I know you and I are on the side of the scientists
But scientists fall in love too
Even though they know it isn’t strictly true

So:

I’ll love you till the heat death of the
Universe; until the galaxies collide
In four billion years or
Till we fall into the sea
Which could be next week

I’ll love you till my loop becomes estranged
Until my mind becomes deranged
And when it does just put us out of our misery, please.

I know love really means
I like your genes
So take them off

I know love really means
I like your genes
So take them off

I’m so glad that I got to know your brain
In this segment of infinity before we die
And I hope you feel the same and won’t complain
That we won’t get to be with each other on a non-existent other side
And I wrote this love song for you, to explain
Every day I don’t tell you I love you is a lie.

Even though I know love isn’t real
It’s just an evolutionary tendency
That we’ve converted into a trancendency
But hey, I’m so f**king transcendent for you

And you can’t trust what you feel
And yet people somehow last it out
With the people they cannot live without
So I’m playing the long game, darling

And I know that when we signed up for the skeptic frame of mind
It meant we had to trust reality was better than our dreams
And we both know all the research but with you and me combined
We’ll face whatever the world can bring us and I’m glad you’re on my team

And I know you and I are on the side of the scientists
But scientists fall in love too
Even though they know it isn’t strictly true

So:

I’ll love you till the heat death of the
Universe; until the galaxies collide
In four billion years or
Till we fall into the sea
Which could be next week

I’ll love you till my loop becomes estranged
Until my mind becomes deranged
And when it does just put us out of our misery, please.

I know it makes you sad
That we won’t be there
When it ends

I know it makes you sad
That we won’t be there
To see it end

And I know that if I could
I would stand hand in hand with you
Until everything became still
Which it will