The first time I heard this song was when I was watching the movie Iron Man. The music to this song is played when Tony Stark is working on his Hot Rod (the car), and Pepper walks in to talk to him.

ironman1

I couldn’t get the song at that point of time, and a Google search after the movie lead me to Institutionalized by Suicidal Tendencies.

The song follows ‘Mike’ who is portrayed by the band member Mike, and the conflicts he faces with his friends and family. The song is different from other songs. The song doesn’t use lyrical verses, but is instead sung in a running sentence style. The lyrics are complemented by a guitar riff, which gets more prominent as Mike’s emotional bursts come forth.

I will leave you with the song and its lyrics.

Sometimes I try to do things
And it just doesn’t work out the way I want it to
And I get real frustrated, and like I try hard to do it,
And I take my time, but it just doesn’t work out the way I want it to
It’s like I concentrate on it real hard
But it just doesn’t work out
And everything I do and everything I try
It never turns out, it’s like, I need time to figure these things out
But there’s always someone there going, “Hey Mike, you know, we’ve been noticing you’ve been having a lot of problems lately, you know? You should maybe get away, and like, maybe you should talk about it you’ll feel a lot better”
And I go, “No it’s okay, you know, I’ll figure it out, just leave me alone, I’ll figure it out, you know? I’m just working on myself”
They go, “Well you know, if you want to talk about it, I’ll be here, you know, and you’ll probably feel a lot better if you talk about it. So why don’t you talk about it?”
And I go, “NO I don’t want to, I’m okay! I’ll figure it out myself!”
But they just keep bugging me, they just keep bugging me and it builds up inside…

So you’re gonna be institutionalized
You’ll come out brainwashed with bloodshot eyes
You won’t have any say
They’ll brainwash you until you see their way

I’m not crazy!-Institutionalized
You’re the one that’s crazy!-Institutionalized
You’re driving me crazy!-Institutionalized

They stuck me in an institution
Said it was the only solution
To give me the needed professional help
To protect from the enemy myself

I was in my room, and I was just like, staring at the walls thinking about everything but then again I was thinking about nothing, and then my mom came in, and I didn’t even know she was there
She called my name and I didn’t hear her, then she started screaming, “Mike! Mike!”
And I go, “What? What’s the matter?”
She goes, “What’s the matter with you?”
I go, “There’s nothing wrong mom”
She goes, “Don’t tell me that, you’re on drugs!”
I go, “No mom, I’m not on drugs, I’m okay, I’m just thinking, you know? Why don’t you get me a pepsi?”
She goes, “NO! You’re on drugs!”
I go, “Mom, I’m okay, I’m just thinking”
And she goes, “NO! You’re not thinking you’re on drugs! Normal people don’t act that way!”
I go, “Mom, just get me a Pepsi, please? All I want’s a Pepsi”
And she wouldn’t give it to me, all I wanted was a Pepsi, just one Pepsi, and she wouldn’t give it to me, just a Pepsi!

They give you a white shirt with long sleeves
Tied around your back, you’re treated like thieves
Drug you up because they’re lazy
It’s too much work to help a crazy

I’m not crazy!-Institutionalized
You’re the one that’s crazy!-Institutionalized
You’re driving me crazy!-Institutionalized

I’m sitting in my room, and my mom and my dad came in, they pulled up a chair and they sat down
They go, “Mike, we need to talk to you”
And I go, “Okay, what’s the matter?”
They go, “Me and your mom, we’ve been noticing lately you’ve been having a lot of problems, and you’ve been going off for no reason, and we’re afraid you’re gonna hurt somebody, and we’re afraid you’re gonna hurt yourself, so we decided that it would be in your best interest, if we put you in a place where you could get the help that you need”
And I go, “Wait! What are you talking about? WE decided?! MY best interest?! How do YOU know what MY best interest is? How can YOU say what MY best interest is? What are you trying to say, I’M crazy?! When I went to YOUR schools, I went to YOUR churches, I went to YOUR institutional learning facilities! So how can you say I’m crazy?!

They say they’re gonna fix my brain
Alleviate my suffering and my pain
But by the time they fix my head
Mentally I’ll be dead

I’m not crazy!-Institutionalized
You’re the one that’s crazy!-Institutionalized
You’re driving me crazy!-Institutionalized

It doesn’t matter I’ll probably get hit by a car anyway

 

Written for day 9 of A to Z Challenge

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10 thoughts on “Institutionalized

  1. Wonderful… !! The song highlights the depths of frustration when freedom is caged..! 🙂 Thanks for sharing this one 🙂 It’s wonderful… 🙂

  2. Its very powerful this song..
    The frustration and the need for freedom comes thru exceptionally well.
    I kind of liked it.. though its not something I listen to on a regular basis…
    Maybe its because Tony Stark was listening to it?! 😉

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