Friday, March 31, 2006

Bad things will happen if you don't support my run for Congress, this is but one of them...

If this congress thing doesn’t work out, I still may have a viable career as a country-music lyricist. My excellent showing as a Toby Keith impostor is all the proof I need. With the Republican ascendance (perhaps waning, but still...) And the intractable bad taste of the nation at large, I can only assume that this is a booming field. Flip through your radio dial one of these days: what do you hear on 99 out of 100 stations? Moaning twangy men and shrill, frosted-blonde women making unappealing noises about trucks, the “honky tonk”, heartbreak, and the open road. These are motifs I feel I can work with, even though I’m the sort of guy who’d probably get his ass beat if he stepped into any self-respecting “honky tonk”. I’m not one of these honky tonk men. I’m more of a latte man. I can admit this, and I don’t think it’ll adversely affect my chances of becoming the Ira Gershwin of “down home” music. After all, you’d be surprised at how many red state icons are hardly power-tool competent. Most televangelists wear makeup and some of those NASCAR drivers are almost midgets. Given this, I should be fine if I just remember to wear a big ol’ cowboy hat and some of them boots they got.

And let me be utterly clear. When I say “country music”, I ain’t talking about that hipster country business. I got no time for this history-conscious, thoughtful, musically-respectable what-have-you. I’m talking top-40, Shania Twain, beer commercial music all the way, people. I want my tunes to be hummed from Bouge Chitto, Mississippi to International Falls, Minnesota. From Charleston to Bakersfield. I want to be inescapable to every I-podless long-distance motorist in America. It is my dream to insinuate my songs of woe and rural whimsy into the collective consciousness, where they’ll endure as cloying melodies and facile turns of phrase for decades to come. And, of course, there will be money, big money, enough money to fill the back forty of the beautiful, beautiful ranch I will soon be able to afford.

You think I’m being unrealistic? You doubt my country hitmaker potential? Well, then, get a load of this lil’ weeper, which I call “Panhandle Sunrise”. You might notice that the title is clever, because it can refer to any panhandle–-Oklahoma or Texas or even Florida. All of those areas can consider it a local tune. Could Tim McGraw pull that off? I’ll answer my own question here: no, Tim McGraw could not pull that off. He doesn't have what I like to call “poetic subtlety”.

Anyway, without further ado, here is “Panhandle Sunrise”. Prepare to cry your ass off...

Sugar, you’re my drivin’ wheel
You’re my gas pedal
Got to tell you how I feel
Flower, you’re my petal
Whether I’m watchin’ TV or flyin’ down the highway
I’m thankin’ God that you’re there beside me

Because you’re gentle as Jesus and almost as wise
And, woman, you look as good as a panhandle sunrise

Sweet bear, you’re my morning sun
You’re the first morning dew
You got me on the run
And, baby, I’m runnin’ at you
Whether here or there, up or down, near or far
I got to be gettin’ back to wherever you are

Because you’re gentle as Jesus and almost as wise
And, woman, you look as good as a panhandle sunrise

(There should be a slow, sultry slide guitar solo)

Because, woman, you’re gentle as Jesus and almost as wise
And, darlin’, you’re looking as good as a panhandle sunrise
A panhandle sunrise
A panhandle sunrise...

Alright. I’ll give you a moment to dry your tears and collect yourself. Perhaps you’ll want to call that special someone or an old flame and let them know how much they mean to you. Or maybe you’ll want to hug someone. I’ll leave you to it. I’ll be here when you get back.