“Hoped You Couldn’t Tell” is about as hopeful as Twelve Days In June gets. And make no mistake about it, this is a conditional kind of hopefulness. It’s about liking someone, romantically, and it’s a song that just might have a happy ending – hopefully.
After the first verse, there’s a kind of chorus that states: “I know that I’m not perfect/And I hoped you wouldn’t find out.” Later, they sing, “I know that I’m not perfect/I’d just hoped you couldn’t tell.“ This is a guy with some pretty low self-esteem. It’s as though this other person finds him attractive because she doesn’t really know him. If this other person ever found out how he really is, she wouldn’t like him anymore. It’s been said a lot of celebrities feel these same sorts of feelings. They don’t trust their fame. If fans saw the real person, the celebrity’s fame would quickly disappear. That’s really sad. It’s tragic when people have trouble believing that others truly like them. They are so down on themselves they expect others to be equally down on them. And this just isn’t true. If someone finds something likeable about you, it means you’re likeable – whether you want to accept it or not – at least in most cases.
The song begins with the singer of this song really worried about falling in love. “If I stare too long/I’ll blame it on your pale green eyes/Then I see your smile/And hope this never ends.” See what he’s doing here? He’s putting up defense mechanisms against having hope, before the relationship begins to grow. If you develop hope, you could one day have those hopes dashed. It’s better to have not loved and not lost, then to have ever loved before, is what he seems to be saying. You get the impression this guy has had his heart broken way too many times. Yes, he wants to love and be loved; but he also seems to want some guarantee that this relationship won’t end badly. Then again, he already knows there are no such guarantees in this life. You pay your money, and you take your chance. And then you hope for the best.
One is left with the impression that, despite all his reservations, he is still going to go for it. “Can’t fill these years without you,” he sings over a lovely, acoustic guitar-driven arrangement. “Can’t face these fears without you.” Then comes a rather cryptic line. “Fifteen years couldn’t change me at all.” Who knows what that means? Maybe it was how long his previous relationship lasted. He then admits, “I’m so tired of the lies.” Indeed, this guy has some serious trust issues. He’s been lied to – a lot. That’s a difficult hurdle to get over. Yes, you want to give your new partner the benefit of a doubt. However, when you’ve been lied to repeatedly, trust is something that’s just going to need to be earned. And it doesn’t happen overnight.
This guy hopes a girl can’t tell that he’s damaged goods. The good news is that we’re all damaged goods, to some degree, so he might as well throw his hat in the ring. All he really has to lose is his loneliness.