PSB titles and lyrics that are (or may be) sly innuendos

1. "Love Comes Quickly"

Just before it was released as a single, Chris reportedly said that he was too embarrassed to announce its title because of its unintentional innuendo.

2. The final words of "Later Tonight"

If, as I suspect, the underpinning of this song is a masturbatory fantasy—to be sure, a sorrowful, sincere one of almost painful longing—then the final words, "tonight always comes," might be considered a double-entendre.

3. The opening lines of "What Have I Done to Deserve This?"

"You always wanted a lover. I only wanted a job." Think about it.

4. "So Hard"

This track contains a brief sample from a porno film in which the title words are spoken—by a young woman, according to Neil, but it sure as heck sounds like a young man. Add to that the fact that pairs of boxer shorts emblazoned "So Hard" across the front were issued as promo items (which may or may not have been the Boys' idea, but there you have it) and you can't deny that innuendo must have been on somebody's mind. Of special note, however, is the ”9" edit” of the song released on a U.S. CD maxi-single. Since "So Hard" wasn't released on a "9-inch" vinyl format—an extremely rare size for a vinyl recording anyway, made under only very special circumstances—the description of a mix as a 9-inch edit is almost certainly a sneaky sexual innuendo that can hardly be anything but intentional. (Incidentally, one of my site visitors noted that this 9-inch edit is roughly three-quarters the length of the song's two extended dance mixes, one of which is specifically titled the "12-inch mix," and 9 is three-quarters of 12. I suspect that's simply a coincidence, but who knows?)

5. "It Must Be Obvious"

Not so much a sexual as a sexuality innuendo. Neil has acknowledged the pun of the title.

6. "Bet She's Not Your Girlfriend"

Inspired by a newspaper photo of George Michael with a woman.

7. Bilingual

Another punning innuendo, although since Neil had already "come out" by the time of this album, it's probably not about him in particular. But if, as the Boys have averred, it's a pun on "bisexual," then to whom does it refer? Perhaps the narrator of the song "Single"? Let's leave it at that.

8. The opening line of "One of the Crowd"

When Chris intones about going fishing with his "rod," somehow I don't think he has salmon or trout in mind. Actually, this metaphor struck me as so blatant that I didn't even think it qualified as "innuendo." But then I learned that it does indeed slip past some listeners, so I guess it belongs in this list after all.

9. "Who will give whom the bigger surprise?" in "Young Offender"

No comment—as if any were needed.

10. "Did You See Me Coming?"

Even though that's not what it's about, the Boys have on more than one occasion acknowledged the title's lewd connotations. Neil even went so far as to turn it into a joke on The Graham Norton Show. (It was only par for the course considering that, on the average, every third utterance on that show is at least a little naughty.) But then there's also a line that an album reviewer for The Word described a bit cryptically as "plausibly deniable filth": "You don't have to be a high-flyer to catch your slot." OK, I can imagine what he's referring to, but I would prefer not elaborate on it in mixed company. I like to think that my mama raised a gentleman. Looking at it from a somewhat less salacious perspective, one of my site visitors has suggested that you can even read the fabled phenomenon of "gaydar" into the title and lyrics: "… Was I that obvious?"

11. The opening line of "Pandemonium"

"Is this a riot or are you just pleased to see me?" is clearly a takeoff on the classic Mae West quip, "Is that a pistol in your pocket, or are you just happy to see me?" (very frequently misquoted "Is that a banana in your pocket, or are you just glad to see me?" or some other variant with "banana"). As the Boys have restated it, the line strongly suggests that the person to whom the lyric is addressed gets a sexual charge from his misbehavior.

12. "Jack the Lad"

The innuendo of the title is surely unintentional. Yes, there's an ocean of difference between British and American slang. I'm no prude, but delving into it any further would push the boundaries of taste.

13. "I studied history, while you did biology / To you the human body didn’t hold any mystery" in "The Pop Kids"

A little obvious, but a fun, mildly erotic instance of double-entendre nonetheless.

14. "Get It Online"

Taken together, (1) the similarity of the title to the well-known euphemism "get it on" for sexual activity, (2) the long-standing usage of the word "it" as a euphemism for sex itself, and (3) the song's own lines about how you can "find a sexual partner" and "you'll never be alone" suggest that, yes, some innuendo—well, more than just innuendo—may be going on here.

15. "I like the cut of your jib, if you know what I mean" in "A Certain 'Je Ne Sais Quoi'"

One of the annotations to my main entry for this song discusses the meaning and history of the idiomatic expression "I like the cut of your jib." As I note there, the use immediately afterward of another idiom, "If you know what I mean," almost invariably signals innuendo, often of a sexual nature. And that's certainly the case here. In fact, one might take the innuendo a bold step further and consider one highly suggestive alternate meaning of the word "cut," which can be applied to a certain, shall we say, frequently altered characteristic of male sexual anatomy. Most of you surely know what I mean without my having to go into detail. If you don't, well, I'm going to make a very circumspect decision and say nothing more about it.

16. "Ring Road"

It's tempting to describe this song as one long sexual innuendo from beginning to end, only it generally seems too blatant to truly qualify as "innuendo." But it includes several lines that could easily be regarded as "innuendos within the innuendo," so to speak. The couplet "Taking me for a ride / Taking it in your stride" is one, as is "I'd be so happy bumping the cars." Don't ask me to explain—just trust me on this.

17. "I don't care what you've shared 'cause I've seen it" in "Do I Have To?"

Admittedly, it may be a bit of a stretch. But in the proper frame of mind, it can certainly sound suggestive. Or maybe that would be an improper frame of mind.

18. "A Powerful Friend"

This one contains several lines with thoroughly salacious connotations, the most notable of which states that "pizza boys deliver what he needs on demand." Indeed.

19. "Dancing in the moonlight" in "The Truck-Driver and His Mate"

If this truck-driver is, as the song states, "acting out of compulsion," then how likely is it that he and his "mate" are indeed dancing in the moonlight as opposed to engaging in some other nocturnal activity? Sounds like a euphemism to me, especially given the stereotypical behavior at lay-bys of long-distance truck-drivers—a common trope of gay porn fantasy in particular. The Boys may, of course, be toying with that very trope, consciously inverting it by asserting that their truck-driver is engaged in far more "innocent" activity, as it were. But even such an inversion must, to be effective as an inversion, invoke the innuendo.