Go Ahead and Jump!
Why is March 17 special? Van Halen’s “Jump” peaked at No.1 in the U.S. on this day in 1984.
Sing along with me now:
I get up
And nothing gets me down
You got it tough
I’ve seen the toughest around
And I know
Baby, just how you feel
You’ve got to roll with the punches
To get to what’s real…
Might as well jump!
Go ahead and jump!
At first glance, that’s pretty inane stuff. But as a former English major, I urge you to take a closer look. Could David Lee Roth be sneaking a whole lot of deep meaning into his seemingly silly lyrics?
“I get up/And nothing gets me down/You got it tough/I’ve seen the toughest around…”
Translation: Tenacity, persistence, and grit, my friend. You think you have it tough? I’ve seen folks that have it a lot tougher.
“And I know/Baby, just how you feel/You’ve got to roll with the punches/To get to what’s real…”
Translation: I know what you’re going through. Stay resilient, don’t quit, focus on what truly matters.
“Might as well jump/Jump/Go ahead and jump/Jump”
Translation: Jump into a goal that scares you. Jump into a dream you don’t think is within your reach. Jump into a project you’ve been putting off. Jump into a relationship that intrigues you. If not now, when? Just go ahead and jump!
OK, maybe that’s all a bit of a stretch. Roth, of course, has always been more party animal than poet. Or maybe…just maybe…he ingeniously slipped a creed for living a bold, fulfilling, successful life right under our noses in the guise of an innocuous pop-rock song.
I’ll let you decide. I already have.