Piña col-lotta love!

What is the greatest love song of all time? That answer will continue to be debated forever. However, one particular love song has appeared in over 25 movies and 25 television shows. The writer of this song says that he makes enough in royalties from this one song, written forty years ago, that he could still live a rich life today. What song is it? People call it the “Pina Colada Song.” However, many people not only get the name wrong, but entirely miss the meaning of the song as well.
The song is a well-crafted story about a married couple as they attempt to get through the daily grind that has become their marriage. It begins with the husband telling us that he was tired of his lady because they had been together too long, and to use Holmes’ words, “Like a worn out recording, of a favorite song.” This is an important line in the song because of its dual meaning. We all have songs that we have memorized every word to and listen to everyday for a long time, but over time we wear out the song. It is not that we don’t still love the song, but it has become almost habitual. We don’t give it the attention that we once did, much like the husband in this song and the attention he is giving (or not giving) to the relationship with his wife. Interestingly, the second meaning applies to this song itself; almost as if it is a foreshadowing the success of the song and category (a favorite song) to which it would soon belong.
The husband begins to read the paper and finds a personal ad in the paper that catches his attention. Why did that ad, out of all of the other ads in the personals, catch his attention? Because it was written just for him. How many other ads could have included all his specific likes and dislikes in one ad? None. This particular ad was written for him by his wife, with him (and only him) in mind. Do you really believe that this was the first time he had sat in bed and looked through the paper while she supposedly “slept?” Of course not, she knew what he was doing. Do you really believe that his wife, didn’t feel the same way that he was feeling about the relationship? Of course she did. She felt the same way because they had been together a long time. She knew that he was struggling within the relationship, not because he didn’t love her, but because of the monotony that had overtaken their lives.
Some people have argued that none of this matters because he was looking to cheat on his wife. However, it could be that he was just truly bored and looking through the paper. If that is true, then this letter was written to gain his attention. It is as if she is trying to get his attention. She knew exactly what to write to get him to take an action. Some have argued that they both were attempting to cheat on each other. That is simply not what the tone of the song implies. She wrote the ad with her husband in mind to let him know that she is interested in those things too.
In the final set of verses, the two people are to meet at a bar called O’Malleys. The husband is there, dressed in his best suit and tie, looking good, waiting for this mystery woman. She, all dolled up, dressed in a sleek dress wearing high heels carrying a clutch purse, walks in the bar. Is she mad at him for being there? No, she has a “smile on her face.” She knew that she was going to meet him. She responds with a flirty opening, “Ah, it’s you” as if to say to him, I knew who you were the whole time. Then they both “laughed for a moment” and the husband responds with “I never knew, that you liked pina coladas and getting caught in the rain.” She wasn’t mad. He wasn’t upset. The husband has now caught on that he was set up by his wife. She wanted his attention. She was attempting to rekindle the romance that has faded and he said “he never knew.” He never knew that she was interested in those thing that he wanted to do. He never knew that she was feeling the same way. He simply never knew.
This is not a story of betrayal and cheating. It is truly a love story about two married people who have gotten into a rut. The wife was simply trying to reach out her husband so they could escape the life that they had trapped themselves inside. Of course, one could argue that the husband was a poor communicator. Of course, they could argue that he should not have been “mean to his old lady.” But perhaps, rather than dwell on the husband’s faults, we should defer to his wife, who flawlessly pulled off a great surprise, which brought them closer together and helped them both escape.

**Disclaimer: Mr. Gillam’s opinion does not represent that of every other sane person who believes that this is not a love song.