What Is The Measure Of Your Success?

[Image: 'I Predict 1990' Front Cover]



In this city I confess
I am driven to possess
Answer no one, let them guess
Are you someone I impress?

I am a big boss
With a short fuse
I have a nylon carpet and rubber shoes
And when I shake hands
You'll get a big shock
You'll be begging for mercy when the champ is through
You'd better believe I'll put the clamps on you

In this city, be assured
Some will rise above the herd
Feed the fatted, leave the rest
This is how we won the west

I am a safebox
I am the inner sanctum when the door locks
I own the passkey
You say you can't take it with you?
We'll see about that, won't we?

Push, push, push

In this city I confess
God is mammon, more is less
Off like lemmings at the gun
I know better, still I run

I am an old man
And the word came
But you can't buy time with a good name
Now when the heirs come around like buzzards on a kill
I see my reflection in their envious eyes
I'd watch it all burn
To buy another sunrise

Some men find the fire escape
Old men learn it all too late
Push, push, push the alarm
Old MacDonald's bought the farm

Recorded Appearances

About The Song

From Clone Club News Flash Winter 1988, Winter 1988:

The question is as loaded today as it was when Jesus first asked it 2,000 years ago, "What good will it be for a man if he gains the whole world, yet forfeits his own soul?" (Matt. 16:26).

From Now The Truth Can Be Told Liner Notes & Song-By-Song Essays, Now The Truth Can Be Told Insert Booklet, August 23rd, 1994:

The optimist in me wants to bronze this song as a museum piece for the materialism-run-amok decade in which it was written; when the measure of a man was his stuff.

But since greed is one of the grand, recurring themes of American life, it logically follows in the 1990's that the love of money is the root of all downsizing. If gucci loafers can lead us into greed's snare, so can sensible shoes.

And why is this one of my recurring themes as well, from "Whatcha Gonna Do When Your Number's Up?" to "Cash Cow"? Maybe I'm marking off more "On The Fritz" style borders. Or maybe I'm just a lousy businessman.

From Steve Taylor Interview, Listen In, August 2005:

I think that one came from the perspective of a guy who's looking back on life and realizing he got it totally wrong. In fact, it might have been a quote I read from somebody, who was just like, he would give up every cent he'd ever made just to get one more day of life. That would be a drag, to get to the end of life, and realize you'd spent all your time doing exactly the wrong things.