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T he 1993’s book Pet Shop Boys versus America gives us some hint at what might be a true inspiration for a song:

    We arrive at dance music radio station CKMF and Neil is interviewed: “A lot of our songs aren’t about the happiest things, they’re about real life; falling in love; being disappointed; making money; suffering; working; being happy... in Japan we had a review that said we were being boring and we thought it was funny and I just started singing ‘we were never being boring’...”

as well as Pet Shop Boys status quo just after releasing it as a single:

    The spring of 1991 found them at a strange moment. Their latest album, Behaviour, had been widely proclaimed a masterpiece but had still sold less well than their previous records. Just before the tour a single, Being boring, one of the songs they were most proud of, became their least successful single in the British charts for six years, a failure they struggled to explain to themselves. These few months caught them by turns battling with and dismissing an unusual level of self-doubt.



I n programme for Nightlife tour, where every Pet Shop Boys song to date is addressed, Being boring gets a short description from Chris: “It’s a very sad song, isn’t it?”


B eing boring is the last song in the trilogy about the death of Neil Tennant’s best friend from AIDS. The first song is 1987’s It couldn’t happen here, and the second—1989’s Your funny uncle.


I ncidentally, there has been a single released from the group Human League entitled Being boiled. Another band called Chaotic Youth had both album and song named Being dead is boring.


B eing boring and the whole of Behaviour album are one of the favourite records of Axl Rose from Guns ‘N Roses. Axl Rose said he listened to them during the recording of one of his band’s LPs and that Being boring inspired their song called November rain.

It’s also one of the best songs for Boy George, along with What have I done to deserve this?, West End girls and Go West.

Rollo (of Faithless), producer of three songs on Nightlife and former remixer of Can you forgive her? and Absolutely fabulous also mentions Being boring as his favourite Pet Shop Boys record. The list also includes It’s a sin, Left to my own devices and the whole Disco album.

Bob Kraushaar, who was the engineer responsible for Being boring, also holds the song in high regard.



W hat are some usual explanations of Being boring acronym, BB?
  • Brigitte Bardot
  • Boris Becker
  • Big Brother (as a character in Orwell’s book and as a reality show title)
  • Base Ball
  • Basket Ball
  • Bulletin Board
  • Beastie Boys (music group)
  • Best Bitter (British alcohol)
  • Best Buy (consumer electronic store)
  • Big Breakfast (TV show)
  • Black Box
  • Baby Boomer
  • Bachelor of Business (title)
  • Björn Borg (tenis player)
  • Bad Boys (song and movie)
  • Bobby Brown (musician)
  • Brighton Belle
Incidentally, 2002’s album Release includes a song with the very same acronym, Birthday boy.


W hen Behaviour came out the Putney Posse left a bunch of roses on Neil’s doorstep—nine red roses and one yellow one for Being boring.

“[It] was a very Putney Posse thing to do,” says a friend recollecting the event. Putney Posse was a “fairly notorious, hugely cheeky and rather funny” group of four fanatic Pet Shop Boys fans in the late eighties and early nineties, who tried to always follow Neil and Chris.

The Posse, along with other UK fans, were aghast that Being boring was going to be the next single. “At that point, it seemed quite the opposite of the Boys we knew and loved and we thought it was a terrible choice of single.”

While Neil was away at the time the roses were delivered to his door, they have later been taken inside, so even if a bit limp by then, he should have “got the message.”




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