Morning Music: Diary By Bread

Bread - DiaryI had warned you that I was just going to wing it. I said that I would present songs that I loved and songs that I hate. Whatever. Well, today I am going to feature a song I despise. It may well be the worst song ever written, Bread’s hit “Diary.”

Like most really bad Bread songs, it is written by David Gates. It tells the story of a guy who finds a diary and starts reading. He becomes convinced that the woman who wrote it is secretly in love with him. But then he realizes that actually, it’s some other guy. Apparently, he isn’t Adam and she isn’t Eve. The song exist in a universe in which there are more than two people.

I’m pretty sure I know how the song was written. “I found her diary underneath a tree” came into Gates’ mind. And so he started thinking. “And then I was stung by a bee”? No. “It wasn’t very hard to see”? No. “The air was salty near the sea”? No. “I didn’t have to pay a fee”? No. “And started reading about her”? Oh, that’s the way, “And started reading about me”! Yeah! That’s a winner. And it just went on like that.

I have obvious questions about the song. For one, if the book said, “Diary of Lynn Anne Edwards,” wouldn’t you go and give it to her and tell her you found it. But no. Our hero just starts reading her personal thoughts. No wonder it turns out she isn’t pining after him. He’s a jerk! And why would he think she was writing about him? So he’s not just a jerk. He’s a narcissistic jerk. I think from now on I’m going to refer to it as Donald Trump’s Song.

Musically, it’s pretty enough. I like the guitar picking throughout. The vocal harmony on the refrain is nice. But I don’t think the strings add to it. They make the maudlin content feel all the more oppressive. But it is a good indication of what a great person I am to make myself listen to it again, just to share it with you.

How a Decent Man Deals With Finding a Diary

I found her diary underneath a stack
And so I found her and gave it right back
I did not even look at the inside
‘Cause I’m not a jerk or other awful guy.

21 thoughts on “Morning Music: Diary By Bread

  1. I laughed way too hard at this entry.

    It did make me think of this episode of Adventure Time where characters you don’t know or care about find a diary and resolve it.

    If you cannot watch it, let me know and I will email you my password so you can shake your head at my terrible taste in TV shows to go with my terrible taste in songs.

    • Sounds interesting. Work has me crazy. I’m seriously thinking about changing the scheduling of posts here. I will keep anniversary and music posts. But the rest will probably float. At least until work calms down. But I’ll see if I can find time to watch it.

  2. You couldn’t be more wrong. This is a great song, with great lyrics. David Gates is a genius.
    Maybe just stick with Atmospheric Physics?

    • I’m no less snarky about atmospheric physics!

      And David Gates is a genius. But that doesn’t mean I have to like him.

      I am curious why I get this kind of comment so often. Let me explain. I’m a huge fan of Stewart Lee. Yet almost all my friends hate him. They don’t even think he’s a comedian. And that’s fine. I don’t try to convince them. And I certainly don’t go around to blogs and get hurt that other people don’t share my opinions. I think it’s all about self-confidence. I don’t need people to share my opinions. In this particular case, I know that this song is well loved by millions of people. Is your love for the song contingent on my approval?

      Note that I have reasons for my beliefs. Your comment is just that it is a great song. You don’t even try to counter what I’ve said. Don’t you think it is creepy that a guy would find your diary and then start to read it with the intent to use the information to further his romantic life?

      But it really doesn’t matter to me. That was from a period when I was writing full-time for others and 4 posts per day. I doubt I’ve thought of the song since I wrote this. But I’m glad you reminded me of it. It’s very funny!

      If it helps: I think it is fine for you to like this song.

      • I’m not even remotely hurt you don’t share my opinion and I simply stumbled onto your blog. I didn’t defend my opinions bc I’m a fairly concise and succinct person. Not to mention I know it’s not your fault you’re wrong and I’m right :)

          • Correction: you find him completely unamusing. I didn’t find the film Dumb and Dumber funny. But that doesn’t make it unfunny. Plenty of people find it hilarious. Stewart Lee is a meta-comedian. So it isn’t surprising that people who don’t know comedy well wouldn’t find him funny.

        • You can’t be concise and succinct if you aren’t making an argument. Not that it matters. Opinions come first and then the justifications. That doesn’t make the arguments any less interesting. But I don’t think one can rightly criticize an argument without making an argument.

          • And how is it that you know I don’t know comedy well? Sounds like someone is making an awful lot of assumptions here. Very interesting….oh, and I can criticize anything I want. With or without an argument. That’s the beauty of personal freedom. Peace.

            • I didn’t say you couldn’t spout nonsense. You’ll notice the modifier in the sentence I typed before.

              How do I know you don’t know comedy well? It’s speculation. Part of it is based on your going crazy over a humorous post. (Your now thinking “But it wasn’t funny!” is utterly predictable.)

              You are correct that you have the right to say whatever you want. But I don’t have to give you a platform. And given that you argue like a tween, I’m going to de-platform you.

              “OMG! He doesn’t believe in freedom of speech,” she thinks as ignorantly as usual. Say something worth sharing and I’ll allow it.

              • Next he is going to detail the probabilities of Rupert Holmes Pina Colada actually occuring and then rip it to shreds as well.

                My comment to your review “That’s like, your opinion man.”

  3. It was actually a diary that the reader just couldn’t stop reading it but indulging in it. The reader would just thought he was the main role in the diary until the end the writer reveals something to wake up the reader. The girl writer was a geneous and every man read her writing would wish her finding her love one.

    • Okay. I just figured out why people are showing up on this page: “diary bread meaning” ranks this page at #4. It’s not my intent to ruin the song for anyone. The article is meant to be hyperbolically negative. It was part of a week of songs that I ranted again. I’m going to read them now to see who else I will offend in the future!

  4. You could not be more wrong about Bread and President Donald Trump. You let your personal opinions cloud the simplistic and authentic nature of both Bread and President Trump. It seems to me that you fancy yourself a worthy critic of both, however, I believe that you are not as righteous as you state. No one is a saint, and it is human nature to be curious, so reading a diary found under a tree is not so far fetched. It is quite possible that you are upset because you will never be anywhere near as famous as Bread OR President Trump. TRUMP 2020!!!!!!

    • If you have to make “no one is a saint” arguments about your heroes, maybe your heroes aren’t that great. It reminds me of a quote, “In my experience, people say ‘We’re only human’ when they are acting like animals.”

      You’re a very silly person.

  5. The funny thing about this song is the two thoughts I had in my head the first time I came across an argument about it:

    First thought: “Okay, it wasn’t like he found some random woman’s diary and started reading it. It was his wife’s.”

    Second thought: “Wait…that’s even WORSE!!!”

    Dave Barry refers to songs like this one as “weenie rock”. He couldn’t be more correct. How does a band with so much talent create so much CRAP???

    • I do think that Gates stumbled upon the song. The tune is pretty good and I think he just went with it. He didn’t seem to care a lot about lyrics. “Baby I’m-a Want You”?!

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