“Some will sell their dreams for small desires”

A few interesting notes on the song.  Lyrics to Subdivision (1982) are here:

Sprawling on the fringes of the city
In geometric order
An insulated border
In between the bright lights
And the far unlit unknown

Growing up it all seems so one-sided
Opinions all provided
The future pre-decided
Detached and subdivided
In the mass production zone

Nowhere is the dreamer
Or the misfit so alone

Subdivisions —
In the high school halls
In the shopping malls
Conform or be cast out
Subdivisions —
In the basement bars
In the backs of cars
Be cool or be cast out
Any escape might help to smooth
The unattractive truth
But the suburbs have no charms to soothe
The restless dreams of youth

Drawn like moths we drift into the city
The timeless old attraction
Cruising for the action
Lit up like a firefly
Just to feel the living night

Some will sell their dreams for small desires
Or lose the race to rats
Get caught in ticking traps
And start to dream of somewhere
To relax their restless flight

Somewhere out of a memory
Of lighted streets on quiet nights…

After reading the line, “Or lose the race to rats,” I wondered if it isn’t better to be a rat than to be a mouse.  Contrast this song with the movie, Grease or West Side Story or
Romeo & Juliet.  Turns out that romance or gangs don’t “smooth [out] / The unattractive truth” about schools.  On Neil Ellwood Peart, the dude is quite the musician.  A couple of interesting facts about Peart: 

1)  Peart lives in Santa Monica, California, with his wife, photographer Carrie Nuttall, and daughter, Olivia Louise. He also has a home in the Laurentian Mountains of QuebecCanada, and spends time in Toronto for recording purposes. 

2)  While in London he came across the writings of novelist and Objectivist Ayn Rand. Rand’s writings became a significant early philosophical influence on Peart, as he found many of her writings on individualism and Objectivism inspiring. References to Rand’s philosophy can be found in his early lyrics, most notably “Anthem” from 1975’s Fly by Night and “2112” from 1976’s 2112

3)  Before joining Rush, he had written few songs, but, with the other members largely uninterested in writing lyrics, Peart’s previously underutilized writing became as noticed as his musicianship. 

Here are Neil Peart’s books

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