Dumbass Sayings: “I’ve Never Had to Knock on Wood”

The Mighty Mighty Bosstones had a hit song in 1997 called “The Impression That I Get” in which the singer says “I’ve never had to knock on wood and I’m glad I haven’t yet because I’m sure it isn’t good.” The apparent message of the song is that the man has never had tragedies happen to him and he’s glad about that.

He says “Have you ever been close to tragedy or been close to folks who have? Have you ever felt the pain so powerful, so heavy you collapse? I've never had to knock on wood, but I know someone who has. Which makes me wonder if I could.”

The problem with that of course is that knocking on wood is a superstitious behavior meant to give good luck or avoid jinxing yourself. In no way does knocking on wood fit the context of the lyrics of this song. Whether you have to knock on wood or not has nothing to do with personal tragedy. You don’t have to have any tragedies occur in your life to knock on wood, you can just be a superstitious or paranoid person. Also, even if you have had lots of tragedy in your life, that doesn’t necessarily mean you knock on wood. Knocking on wood is not a mandatory activity for people who have lost loved ones. I have no idea how this song just slipped past everyone. The lyrics clearly make no sense and to top it all of it’s an annoying ass song too.

Maybe he means he’s never had to knock on wood meaning he’s never had to demean or curse wood that he bought for a home craft project. He’s always purchased quality materials and has had good luck with wood purchased from Home Depot so he’s never had to knock it before on Yelp or to friends and relatives. If that was the case, the chorus might make sense, but that’s obviously not what this guy was talking about.

When it comes to songs about superstitions it's best to stick with Stevie Wonder.

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