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M any people wonder what actually is a “haversack” mentioned in the song. Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary states the following definition:
    haversack \Hav”er*sack\, n. [F. havresac, G. habersack, sack for oats. See 2d Haver, and Sack a bag.]

    1. A bag for oats or oatmeal. [Prov. Eng.]

    2. A bag or case, usually of stout cloth, in which a soldier carries his rations when on a march;—distinguished from knapsack.

    3. A gunner’s case or bag used carry cartridges from the ammunition chest to the piece in loading.

A ccording to one of the interviews with Pet Shop Boys, “boring” is one of their favourite word, along with “actually”. The phrase “being boring” was first used by Neil Tennant in 1989’s Literally book in the context “we, famous for being boring...” —possibly a tongue-in-cheek reference to the very same press article that inspired the song.

L iterally 18 mentioned that one of middle 1997 issues of Vanity Fair had an article quoting a section of Being boring’s lyrics, reportedly with some mistakes.

The fabulous Funnily Enough website includes a section Missheard Lirricks, which includes a following entry:

    Being boring as heard by people not named Merrill Bainbridge:

    “We dressed up in faults / and faults make amends” (from a 1997’s article in Vanity Fair on Keith Haring, spotted by Lauren)

Other commonly misheard verse is “half a sack” or “half a snack” instead of “haversack.”

B eing boring was chosen as the best song lyrics-wise in Wayne Studer’s 2001’s poll, gaining votes of more than 40% people. The runner-up was Rent with only 7% of the votes.


p. 142
Information about Zelda Fitzgerald.
p. 113
Interviews, some regarding lyrics.
Funnily Enough website.
Wayne Studer’s website.

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