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The meaning behind “Bags” by Clairo

“Bags” is the fifth song off of Clairo’s debut album “Immunity”. In the song Clairo talks about working up the courage to tell her crush how she feels about them. The song is filled with this nervous type of feeling melody that is correlated to how we often feel when we are around someone we are interested in alone for the first time. The song tells the story of the nerviness we all feel when we like someone and we are unsure of how they feel towards us back. We often feel anxious and tend to over think everything we say or do. I think it’s funny becauseI don’t think this feeling ever really goes away with age, I think we just tend to get better at trying to play it cool even when we feel like we’re going to throw up.

The first line of the song is “Every second counts I don’t wanna talk to you anymore”, she later follows that same verse with the lyrics “Every minute counts I don’t wanna watch tv anymore, yeah can you figure me out?”. When you like someone and you’re alone with them you want to show them how you feel or tell them how you feel. When you have these feelings inside you that are trying to get out, the seconds feel so important to you, and the minutes feel so long and agonizing. You start to get so in your head when you like someone that once you realize how you feel about them you start to wonder if they know how you feel, is it obvious? Do other people know too?

In the second verse she says “I don’t wanna be forward, I don’t wanna cut corners savor this with everything I have inside me”. When you like someone you get so excited about them, just thinking about them can make you feel warm inside and we tend to let out emotions get the better of us and we need to use our heads to set us back to reality. Although speeding things up seems exciting and fun, it’s important to not get too ahead of yourself and realize you finally have the moment you’ve been waiting for. She then goes on to say “Tell you how I felt sugar coated melting in my mouth pardon my emotions I should probably keep it all to myself”. Essentially she is saying that she is being sweet to the person by telling them what she thinks of them but she is worried that if she brings her emotions into it that it will backfire on her and she’ll just regret having ever said anything. Being forward with people and my emotions is very far from my area of expertise, especially when it comes to romantic relationships. I tend to think the same way as Clairo in this song, if I tell him how I feel this may ruin everything and then boom just like that I played myself. Sometimes it feels easier to just bottle things up even if it takes a toll on you.

In the final chorus, she says “Can you see me using everything to hold back? I guess this could be worse walking out the door with your bags”. She’s saying can you tell how I feel, do you get my energy about how I care about you? Even if you can and you’re not doing anything abut it, then it could be worse, you could leave. We try so hard to hold onto people and not tell them how we feel because even if we think they know, saying it unleashes pandora’s box and then we are forced to confront the situation. We like having that person around so much that we rather bury what we’re feeling than have them leave. It’s so funny to really just look at human emotion and just how much we are willing to sacrifice our own happiness to hang onto people. I think it’s because a lot of the time we equate our happiness to them. We think that without them than we won’t be happy or okay. No matter how old you get, liking someone and having feelings for them never gets easier, especially when you have no idea how they feel about you. We’re all so scared of rejection that we rather bury what we want to say and express to them than have them tell us they don’t feel the same way. This rejection leads us to feel embarrassed for having feelings, which then causes us to not take that chance again because we convince ourselves that we’re stupid. This song does a good job of showing all these thoughts and emotions we associate with realizing we have feelings for a person and being conflicted about telling them because we don’t want them to walk away.

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