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Song by "Weird Al" Yankovic

from the album Running With Scissors

Released June 29, 1999
Recorded October 15, 1998
Genre Comedy
Length 11:22
Label Volcano
Writer "Weird Al" Yankovic
Producer "Weird Al" Yankovic
Running with Scissors track listing
  1. "The Saga Begins"
  2. "My Baby's In Love With Eddie Vedder"
  3. "Pretty Fly For A Rabbi"
  4. "The Weird Al Show Theme"
  5. "Jerry Springer"
  6. "Germs"
  7. "Polka Power!"
  8. "Your Horoscope For Today"
  9. "It's All About The Pentiums"
  10. "Truck Drivin' Song"
  11. "Grapefruit Diet"
  12. "Albuquerque"

"Albuquerque" is the last song of "Weird Al" Yankovic's Running with Scissors album. At 11 minutes and 22 seconds, it is the longest song Yankovic has ever released on any of his official studio albums.

With the exception of the choruses and occasional bridges, the track is mostly a spoken word narration about Yankovic's made-up life in Albuquerque, New Mexico, after winning a first-class one-way airplane ticket to the city. The song appears to mimic "Dick's Automotive" by The Rugburns and may be one of his "style parodies"[1].

Throughout the lyrics, there are many clichés and strange happenings that mislead the listener, only for them to find that the path of the story has changed completely within seconds. The instruments are also used in a layered format, playing a repetitive rhythm while the subject is calm, and then dramatically increasing in volume when something serious is said or occurs. One may also note that the bridges often include rather strange guitar and drum playing which is often sporadic and/or off-beat.

There is also an obvious joke involving the song in the album jacket to Running with Scissors. In the beginning, it looks like a standard title header for any of the other songs on the album and the beginning of the song's lyrics are shown. However, the lyrics are cut off early, followed by this message:

“You know what? The rest of these lyrics aren't gonna fit here. There's just no room left. What a drag, huh? I guess we didn't plan this out very well...probably should have used a smaller font or a bigger piece of paper or something. Sorry. We all just feel horrible about this. Well, I guess you'll just have to listen really carefully and try to figure out the words for yourself. Good luck.”

The complete lyrics to the song can be found at Weird Al's website.[2]



The song begins with the protagonist recounting his childhood, which was interrupted when his mother tied him to a wall and force-fed him sauerkraut until he was 26½ years old. Determined to escape this lifestyle, he wins a radio station contest by coming the closest to guessing the number of molecules in Leonard Nimoy's butt (although he was off by 3). The prize is a first class, one way ticket to Albuquerque, New Mexico. He has an unpleasant plane ride to his destination; though he is flying first class, he is forced to sit between two large Albanian women with "excruciatingly severe body odor" and in front of an air-sick child. Furthermore, the flight attendants run out of Dr. Pepper and salted peanuts, the in-flight movie is Bio-Dome, and three of the airplane engines burn out, resulting in a plane crash that kills everyone except for the narrator, the only one who adhered to safety regulations (Tray table up and his seat in the full upright position) .

He crawls away from the wreckage for three days before arriving at the Albuquerque Holiday Inn. He checks into his room and is greeted by a fat hermaphrodite (with a Flock of Seagulls haircut and only one nostril) who steals his lucky autographed glow-in-the-dark snorkel. Though determined not to rest for an instant until he brings the "man" with one nostril to justice, the narrator first stops at the doughnut shop. Upon realizing that the shop is out of glazed, jelly-filled, and cream-filled doughnuts and cinnamon rolls, apple fritters, and bear claws, he purchases the only item the shop has in stock: a box of one dozen starving, crazed weasels. When he opens the box, the weasels attack his face and he runs down the street, desperately trying to remove them until he meets the girl of his dreams: Zelda, a calligraphy enthusiast with a slight overbite and hair "the color of strained peaches". Her first words to him are, “Hey, you've got weasels on your face.”

The two become inseparable after their first meeting, and they get married, buy a house, and have two children, Nathaniel and Superfly. One night, Zelda asks the narrator if he'd like to join the Columbia Record Club. Unready for that kind of commitment, they divorce and he moves out, only to fulfill his lifelong dream a week later by getting a part-time job at the Sizzler, making employee of the month by putting out a grease fire with his face. He recounts an experience with a man named Marty, who attempts to carry a sofa up a staircase by himself. The narrator asks Marty if he needs help, and Marty responds, "No, I want you to cut my arms and legs off with a chainsaw!" After the narrator cuts off Marty's arms and legs with a chainsaw, he's distraught to find that Marty was just being sarcastic, though he insists Marty shouldn't complain, having earned a cool new nickname: "Torso Boy".

The narrator also recalls another amusing anecdote in which a homeless man walks up to him, saying he hasn't had a bite in three days. He turns this into a joke, biting the man in his jugular vein. He then loses his train of thought. Though he knows he's arrived at the conclusion in a "roundabout way", he reveals the surprisingly mundane message of the song—he hates sauerkraut. He leaves listeners with the assurance that, should they ever wake up in an existential quandary full of loathing and self-doubt, they can somehow take a small bit of comfort in knowing that there's still a little place called Albuquerque.


  • At the end of the song (around 11:20, after the music ends), faint laughter can be heard in the background. As "Weird Al" says, "That’s Jim West laughing – I thought it would be a good way to end the album. He’s cracking up because of the stupid chord he played at the end of the song."[3]
  • In the song, the narrator's mother feeds him sauerkraut until he's 26½ years old. This is a reference to Yankovic's common hiding of the number 27 in many of his songs and videos
  • The usage of sauerkraut for humor is shared with Al's friend Emo Philips (who appears in many "Weird Al" projects).
  • The doughnut shop scene is an homage to Monty Python's Cheese Shop sketch.
  • The line "That snorkel's been just like a snorkel to me" is a parody of a similar line in Cheech and Chong's song Basketball Jones Featuring Tyrone Shoelaces.
  • In lieu of his normal DVD of the week review of the Internet radio talk show "2 Sense," Spazfox narrates this song word for word in a series of segments, starting at Sense episode 78.[4]
  • In the computer game Doom 3, one part of the game is to collect PDAs, which contain audio logs and word files. One worker's journal recounts the tale of a worker nicknamed "Torsoboy" after having his arms and legs ripped off by the "Albuquerck" Capacitor.
  • During the recorded song, there are many odd exclamations that have no meaning to the story.
  • When performing this song live, Al will usually extend the song by listing off more types of doughnuts, including blueberry, strawberry, raspberry, boysenberry, loganberry, gooseberry, Halle Berry, old-fashioned doughnuts and Nanaimo bars (when performing in British Columbia), as well as Saskatoon berry donuts (when performing in Saskatchewan) and he is known to have been completely starting the song over after he "loses his train of thought."
  • When performing this song live in Canada, Al is known to replace the dream job at Sizzler with one at Tim Hortons,[5] a Canadian doughnut shop. While this would seem to go better with the narrative earlier in the song about the incident at the donut shop, according to the Tim Hortons website, there are no Tim Hortons stores in New Mexico.[6]
  • When performing the song live, if Al notices somebody leaving the audience at some point during the song he will often yell at the leaving party to sit back down because it's "not the end of the song", typically ending with the audience members returning to their seats.
  • The line "Hey, here's an amusing anecdote for ya" is a reference to the 1987 film Planes, Trains and Automobiles.

See also


External links

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