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Please Pardon Me Don McLean

Today I found myself singing American Pie. (And I even know most of the words.) It has always been a song that in its despair and sadness somehow brought me hope and comfort. Sad songs do that. The blues is all about that. A voice in the darkness, pure and without judgement, saying “yes, what you are feeling is real, and no, you are not alone.” That is the magic of sad songs. They lighten the load.

But today, I became a little annoyed with this old friend. I thought, ‘I’ve had enough of singing this sad song that I have sung for so many years.’ So I took it upon myself to change the lyrics. So, please pardon me Don McLean while I revise your very brilliant song American Pie.

American Pie (revised for my own personal pleasure)

A long, long time ago
And I can still remember how that music came to make me smile
And I knew if I had my chance
That I could make those people dance
And maybe they’d be happy a long while

And Springtime came and made me quiver
With every paper I’d deliver
Good news on the doorstep
I took so many steps

I can’t remember if I sighed
When I read about his brand new bride
But something touched me deep inside
The day Margaret Thatcher died

[Chorus]
So hi-hi, Miss American Pie
Drove my Chevy to the levee, ‘cause the levee is dry
And them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
Singin’ “This’ll be the day that I fly
This’ll be the day that I fly”

Did you write the book of love
And do you have faith in God above
If the Bible tells you so?
Now do you believe in rock and roll
Can music save your mortal soul
And can you teach me how to dance real slow?

Well, I know that you’re in love with me
‘Cause we did go dancin’ in the sea
We both kicked off our shoes
Man, I dig those rhythm and blues

I was a happy teenage broncin’ buck
With a pink carnation and a pickup truck
And I knew I was full of luck
The day Margaret Thatcher died

[Chorus]
So hi-hi, Miss American Pie
Drove my Chevy to the levee, ‘cause the levee is dry
And them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
Singin’ “This’ll be the day that I fly
This’ll be the day that I fly”

Now for ten years we’ve been on our own
And moss don’t grow on a rollin’ stone
And that’s just how it should be
As the jester sang for the king and queen
In a coat he borrowed from James Dean
And a voice that came from you and me

Oh, and while the king was looking down
The jester stole his phoney crown
The courtroom was adjourned
No verdict was returned

And while Lennon sang a song of love
A quartet practiced with a dove
And we sang of promise from above
The day Margaret Thatcher died

[Chorus]
So hi-hi, Miss American Pie
Drove my Chevy to the levee, ‘cause the levee is dry
And them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
Singin’ “This’ll be the day that I fly
This’ll be the day that I fly”

Ob-la-da in a Spring thaw
The birds flew off so full of awe
Eight miles high and flying fast
They landed softly on the grass
The players tried for a forward pass
With the jester laughing hard and laughing last

Now the halftime air was sweet perfume
While the sergeants played a marching tune
We all got up to dance
We finally got our chance

When the players tried to take the field
The marching band refused to yield
So everyone just danced with zeal
The day Margaret Thatcher died?

[Chorus]
So hi-hi, Miss American Pie
Drove my Chevy to the levee, ‘cause the levee is dry
And them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
Singin’ “This’ll be the day that I fly
This’ll be the day that I fly”

Oh, and there we were all in one place
A generation moving in space
Preparing ourselves to start again
So come on, Jack be nimble, Jack be quick
Jack Flash put out that candlestick
‘Cause fire is the devil’s only friend

Oh, and as I watched him on the stage
My hands were clenched in fists of rage
This angel born in Hell
Could break that Satan’s spell

And as the flames climbed high into the night
To light the sacrificial rite
I saw Satan burn to my delight
The day Margaret Thatcher died

[Chorus]
So hi-hi, Miss American Pie
Drove my Chevy to the levee, ‘cause the levee is dry
And them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
Singin’ “This’ll be the day that I fly
This’ll be the day that I fly”

I met a girl who sang the blues
And I told her I had some happy news
She just smiled and changed her ways
I went down to the sacred store
Where I’d heard the music years before
And the man there said the music was here to stay

And in the streets, the children played
The lovers kissed and the poets swayed
For now the word was spoken
The church bells no longer broken

And the three men I admire most
The Father, Son and the Holy Ghost
Their boat came in upon our coast
The day Margaret Thatcher died

[Chorus]
So hi-hi, Miss American Pie
Drove my Chevy to the levee, ‘cause the levee is dry
And them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
Singin’ “This’ll be the day that I fly
This’ll be the day that I fly”

[Chorus]
So hi-hi, Miss American Pie
Drove my Chevy to the levee, ‘cause the levee is dry
And them good old boys were drinkin’ whiskey and rye
Singin’ “This’ll be the day that I fly”

The VIP Section

VIP tickets to a high-brow charity event. Could be interesting. So, I went to my closet and threw on something dazzling enough to be inconspicuous.

First thing I learned: VIP’s get special parking spots.

It was a brilliant summer day when we walked into that tent. It was crowded and noisy. A grumpy old lady served us an over-priced hot dog. We jostled for a bench to sit on. Around then, the nice man who had given us the tickets had found us. “This isn’t the VIP section.” So we followed him behind the rope.

Behind the rope was a larger tent elaborately decorated according to that year’s chosen theme. It was obvious a lot of charity money went into those fabulously stunning decorations. They spared no expense. Beyond that were tables, (with umbrellas), and chairs, and wide open space. (I liked the space!) There was a food tent where the food was free, and there were no hotdogs. And the people serving it were very polite. So this was VIP.

As I walked through that section in my dazzling enough to be inconspicuous clothes, I spotted a man looking at me. Okay, that still happens. Later I learned that he was the organizer of the event. The king of the VIP section as it were.

So we found a table…the only table left actually. There were three women already there. A mother, a daughter and (I think) a daughter’s friend. I could see right away they were social climbers who had somehow wrangled tickets…all chock full o’ hope of possibly meeting some rich men, or at the very least have the thrill of being noticed by one. I didn’t say hello. There was no point. I had nothing to offer them. So I did the most merciful thing and without a word turned my chair around to face the entertainment provided. It was merciful because that way they may have thought they were sitting at a table with someone so important that she snubbed them entirely. Those people like that sort of thing.

At some point I noticed the king of the VIP section slowly making his way in our direction. ‘Good God,’ I thought, ‘He’s on the pussy prowl…and with his wife in tow.’ Sure enough he made it over to our table and introduced himself, announcing his intentions to sit and eat with us.

His wife, (I forget her name but I’ll call her Lean Mean Jeannie), I could tell she was mean. I don’t know if that was a part of her nature or she’d become mean from a life of nothing but too much exercise, too little food and too much worrying about her pussy huntin’ husband. She may have even been a second wife…a once piece of hunted pussy that was from the ‘right’ family, so he married her. Now she was just a getting older wife trying to hang on to meaning by focusing on toning her arms.

When I met that king of the VIP lounge I could see that I had scared him off those ideas fairly quickly. I don’t know if it was my broken nose, chilly, (but polite), demeanour or just that strange presence I have about me, but he was too afraid to sit near. Instead, he sat beside the three women who fawned and flicked their hair. This was an important man, and they were delighted. Those women would have been on their knees to that man behind the food tent if he told them to.

Lean Mean Jeannie sat beside me, and I was sure she was thinking this table is not good enough for us. There are better people to sit with. And I’m also sure she was not too happy about her husband talking to those three flicking, fawning harpies.

Luckily, a few tables over, some privileged man who knew the king and his wife called them over to join him.  Maybe he thought our table was not good enough for the king or maybe he wanted to save Lean Mean Jeannie from having to watch her husband flirt with the three social climbers, but regardless, they left. I was relieved, but I think the harpies were heart-broken. Oh well!

One of the features of the event was the presence of a member of ‘royalty.’ (I’ll not mention the country to protect the nice man who gave us the tickets.) I assume it is meant to give an air of importance to such events…spending all that charity money on hiring those kind of people to show up. So anyway, I was introduced to Mr. Royal. From behind my sunglasses, I looked into his eyes, and shook his hand. ZOMBIE! No kidding! There was nothing to this man. Desolate, stark, vacant, void, empty. Later, I thought this is ‘royalty’… simply a long chain of hollow people, ordering up death and destruction, mating with and/or murdering their own kin, dehumanizing the world, cracking open a hard boiled egg every morning. They are the walking dead. I politely smiled, then turned away.

Later I noticed Mr. Royal’s son running around. He was spoiled, (that was obvious), but lots of children are. What was so disturbing was his butler-nanny. To see a full grown man subservient to a small boy was so incredibly perverse…so unnatural! Then to add to the perversity, I saw this creepy butler-nanny trying to encourage this boy of about 8 or 9 to flirt with full grown women. Was this part of the duty of a butler-nanny? Royalty ewww!

So if you ever wondered what goes on in the VIP section, now you know. For me, it was an experience like any other, but if I was to say one nice thing about it, the open space was very nice.

My One True Love

Oh music! My solace! My love! When did we first meet? It was certainly long before that day the sky thundered, the lightning flashed, the hail pounded and I came screaming into this world, searching for only you…my one true love. And through it all, never have you denied nor deserted me. By your unwavering constancy you made me yours and yours alone…forever.

…and I am certainly not the only one who feels this way. How many times have I seen emotionally charged comments by posters declaring how a song saved them, changed them, gave them strength or comforted them in their darkest hour. It’s irrefutable. Music is something!

So, where did this mystery come from?

Modern American music, undeniably the most powerful music on earth, was born from a broken heart. It was born from the broken heart of a people torn from their homes and denied every basic human right. People dehumanized to the point where their spirits had nothing left but to reach out past the humanity denied them, and towards something far far greater. In their desperation, they cried out for a miracle and received it. It was music. And since that time, their miracle has quickly grown and spread around the world.

Music is blind and makes no judgement. It has no respect for the rules or social restrictions of mankind. Its only mission is to find and fill broken hearts. It doesn’t mind being carried by fools and opportunists, if it can reach its goal. If Jay-Z thinks he controls things by making a triangle with his hands or Madonna thinks she saves the world by showing her bum, it does not matter. Music just laughs and stays the course as it always has. No one can hold music down.

Some of the finest songs that ever inspired me were in misheard lyrics. Certainly, music is the wittiest jester…the prophet-jester who makes us fools…makes us wise…makes us over…makes us lovers. There is no escape from a jester’s court, and who would want to? How else are we to heal the cracks in our weary hearts if not by the magic of laughter and trickery?

So what more can possibly be said about music? Perhaps only, “who put the bomp in the bomp bah bomp bah bomp? Who put the ram in the rama lama ding dong? Who put the bop in the bop shoo bop shoo bop? Who put the dip in the dip da dip da dip? Who was that man? I’d like to shake his hand. He made my baby fall in love with me, yah!!!”

Margaret Thatcher is dead, and it seems like a good day to start a blog

Up until today, I hesitated to go to this place. Blogosphere. It was so much simpler to tweet. A limit of 140 characters gives one surprising artistic license. On the other hand, being able to use as many words as possible to convey a message…now, that is a complicated matter and makes you much more vulnerable. It’s like any restriction, I suppose. Rules can sometimes be things we hide behind. So here I am…naked as it were… left with the frightening freedom of a blank page waiting to be covered in words.

“In the beginning was the Word…”

Three books have written me, (which is more accurate than to say that I have written three books.) They form a trilogy. After the first, I had no idea there would be a second or a third. As I said, those books wrote me, not the other way around.

There is a fourth one yet unpublished…the edges are still being smoothed. It is a novel of one…maybe.

The subject of the trilogy is the Holy Grail. The mega-marketing success of Dan Brown’s The Da Vinci Code made the topic fashionable, but that’s not why this is the subject.

I have read The Da Vinci Code and wasn’t very impressed. Personally, I found it boring. Also there were a number of things that just didn’t add up. The portrayal of the descendants of Jesus whittled down to one lone woman was rather silly…especially considering the importance of the sex rituals within the group. After 2000 years of sex rituals, it seems logical that there would be millions of descendents. And more than likely, infighting and human arrogance would have divided them into several different bickering sects. As were those whom Jesus descended from, they would be just people, and not necessarily anything like Jesus.

Anyway, I’ll not get into all that is wrong with Dan Brown’s book. It’s not really of much interest to me.

What is of interest to me is the Bible, but not in the way you would think. It has to be the weirdest book on earth really…the strangest collection of short stories and poetry, many dating from a time before Muslims, Christians or Jews. Literalists see it as “the Word of God” making God one of the sexiest most violent authors ever. I am not a literalist, and find that silly, but I see the Bible as important to understanding the indescribably complex spiritual condition of human beings. And yes, I use the word God as a reality. I cannot say I believe in God, just as it would be ridiculous for me to say that I believe I have hands that are typing, or I believe I see a computer screen in front me. There is God. That is all. Believe doesn’t even come into it.

Now, I sit here wondering…my first blog, and should I have gotten onto the subject of God. Such a controversial topic. Oh what the hell! Margaret Thatcher is dead and I’m going to say whatever I damn well please!