A name confusion by conductor Pierre Boulez supposedly led to Paul Simon writing this mid-life crisis song. Pierre mistakenly called Paul Al and his then-wife Peggy Betty. Leading to I can call you Betty / And Betty, when you call me, you can call me Al.
The lyrics of this song are considerably more complicated though. What starts off as a lonely man’s mid-life pondering, gets progressively more abstract. In an interview in 1990 Paul Simon told that was deliberate. Start simple, and then the abstract images will fall into the slots the mind has already created.