The House At The Top Of The Tree

From This Might Be A Wiki
From the enhanced "No!" CD

song name The House at the Top of the Tree
artist They Might Be Giants
releases No!, TMBG Clock Radio
year 2002
run time 2:31
sung by John Linnell


  • In a generally questionable song-by-song guide of No! for its tenth anniversary digital reissue, John and John provided the backstory for this song:
We were once attacked by a house cat that was driven insane by the crinkling sound of our potato chip bag. The bag was made of some kind of super strong plastic foil and the top was so well glued together that no amount of effort could get it open. After many minutes of trying to tear it open with our bare hands we looked up to see the cat entering the room with its fur standing on end and its pupils wildly dilated. It looked so weird we didn't know it was our cat at first. We were still trying to process what was going on when the cat jumped into the air and slashed open the bag, spilling out all the chips. Then it started coming after Flansburgh, who defended himself with a rolled up bamboo curtain. That cat wanted us dead. However, we survived and were inspired to write this song. For poetic reasons the cat was changed to a mouse.

Song Themes

Animals, Body Parts, Food, Hands, Heads, Oxymorons, Paradoxes, And Contradictory Statements, Plans, Plants, Real Estate, Recursion, The Senses, Title Not In Lyrics, Transportation, Windows


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The House At The Top Of The Tree is currently ranked #280 out of 1009. (68 wikians have given it an average rating of 8.63)