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General Writing and Grammar Help/Meaning of bearings in a sentence

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Hi Ted. This is the first time I write here. I've read the lyrics of a song recently, but couldn't manage to get the correct interpretation of the word "bearings" in a sentence.
This is the sentence with its context:

"Here comes the future, sincere in its bearings
Surprising and brutal, surely it's scaring me"

Also, if you have time, relating to the same song, I want to make sure that I got right the meaning of "get a hold". Here's the sentence again with its context:

"Here comes the future, I try to ignore it
I can't get a hold on my feelings for it"

Thanks!

Answer
Dear Paolo:

I get many questions from a man named "Paolo," but he is in Italy, and we have been in contact for about ten years.  I haven't heard from anyone in Argentina in a very long time.  Welcome to Allexperts!

Here are the lyrics for the entire song by "The Honeydrips" --

Here comes the future, sincere in its bearings
Surprising and brutal, surely it's scaring me
Here comes the future, please give me a minute
The choices I have made keep me awake at night

Here comes the future, I tried to ignore it
I can't get a hold on my feelings for it
Here comes the future, please give me a minute
The choices I have made wake me with a fever at five

If I could turn back time, if I could turn back time
If I could turn back time I wouldn't
Please let's not talk about the past

Well does it make you insecure? Oh yes, it does
It makes you really want to moan? Oh yes, it does
It makes your heart beat faster too? Oh yes, I can tell
So what are you going to do? Um, well...

Here comes the future, with all its decisions
And amateur visions, and awful formissions
Here comes the future, please give me a second
The choices I have made keep me awake at night
The choices I have made wake me with a fever at five

If I could turn back time, if I could turn back time
If I could turn back time I wouldn't
Please, let's not talk about the past

If I could turn back time, if I could turn back time
If I could turn back time I wouldn't

****

Paolo, many times it is difficult to understand or interpret the meanings of the words and phrases in songs.  They are like poetry:  The composers or singers have their own ideas, and those ideas are, at times, very hard to interpret.

I can only offer you my "understanding" of the lyrics.

The word "bearings" means "actions" or "purposes."  If I say, "He didn't know his bearings," I am suggesting that he either doesn't know where he is OR he doesn't know what he is doing.
I think that "bearings," in the song lyrics, refers to "purpose."  The lyricist is saying that the Future is coming and its purpose is sincere.  We know that the Future is on its way to us, but we don't know what it is bringing [bearing] to us.  The song is very pessimistic:  The Future will be surprising, and what it brings will be "brutal" or causing many problems and unhappiness.  Therefore, I am afraid of it. ["Scaring me."]

The other two lines can be interpreted this way:

"Here comes the future, I try to ignore it" -- That's impossible, because we must accept the future, even if it is scary and brutal.

"I can't get a hold on my feelings for it."  -- "Get a hold" means that I cannot UNDERSTAND how I feel about the Future.

We may have various feelings about the future.  Some may be good, and some feelings may be those of regret.  

The other very important lines in the song have to do with the PAST.  Even if the song writer had the ability to change the past -- "turn back time" -- he would choose NOT to.  The past, perhaps filled with problems, mistakes, and regrets, cannot be changed.

The oncoming FUTURE cannot be stopped.  Even if we could prevent the future from occurring, we most likely would NOT.

The preceding is MY view of the lyrics.  Other people, of course, may take different views.  That is the challenge and the beauty of poetry.  A poem or song affects us in different ways, because we give it interpretations that are personal to us.

**** Paolo, since this is your first time at Allexperts -- and I hope that it will NOT be your last, allow me to point out what you will receive with my answer.  There will be an "evaluation" of my answer to you.  There are four categories in which you judge me, with a "1" as the worst score and a "10" as the best.  There is also a box to check for "volunteer of the month," which is an extra benefit for the expert who answers your questions.  All volunteers appreciate good ratings, of course.  But, only YOU can make the ratings.

I assume that you chose to send your question to me because you have compared the ratings of different volunteers in this category.

Gracias, and please stay in touch.


Ted Nesbitt

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Ted Nesbitt

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I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

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I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

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B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

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