HOW TO SING THE BLUES
1. Most Blues begin, "Woke up this morning."
2. " I got a good woman" is a bad way to begin the Blues, 'less
you stick something nasty in the next line, like " I got a good woman,
with the meanest face in town."
3. The Blues is simple. After you get the first two lines right, repeat
them. Then find something that rhymes ... sort of: "Got a good woman -
with the meanest face in town. Got teeth like Margaret Thatcher - and she
weigh 500 pound."
4. The Blues are not about choice. You stuck in a ditch, you stuck
in a ditch; ain't no way out.
5. Blues cars: Chevys and Cadillacs and broke-down trucks. Blues don't
travel in Volvos, BMWs, or Sport Utility Vehicles. Most Blues transportation
is a Greyhound bus or a southbound train. Jet aircraft, skidoos,
an' state-sponsored motor pools ain't even in the running. Walkin' plays
a major part in the blues lifestyle. So does fixin' to die.
6. Teenagers can't sing the Blues. They ain't fixin' to die yet. Adults
sing the Blues. In Blues, "adulthood" means being old enough to get the
electric chair if you shoot a man in Memphis. That's the cut-off.
7. Blues can take place in New York City but not in Hawaii or any place
in Canada. Hard times in St. Paul or Tucson or San Diego is just depression.
Chicago, St. Louis, and Kansas City still the best places to have the Blues.
You cannot have the blues in any place that don't get no rain.
8. A man with male pattern baldness ain't the blues. A woman with male
pattern baldness is. Breaking your leg cuz you're skiing is not the blues.
Breaking your leg cuz an alligator is chomping on it is. Losing your leg
to necritizing fasciitis is not the blues. Losing your leg to a shot-gunblast
from yo' woman is.
9. You can't have no Blues in an office or a shopping mall. The
lighting is wrong. Go outside to the parking lot or sit by the dumpster.
Go down to the Greyhound bus-station.
10. Good places for the Blues: a. highway b. jailhouse
c. empty bed d. bottom of a whiskey glass
Bad places: a. Ashrams b. gallery openings
c. Ivy League institutions d. golf courses e. Hooters
11. No one will believe it's the Blues if you wear a suit, 'less you
slept in it. If you wore a backwards baseball cap, even one time, you're
disqualified for life.
12. Do you have the right to sing the Blues? Yes, if: a. you're
older than dirt b. you're blind c. you shot a man in Memphis
d. you can't be satisfied
No, if: a. you have all your teeth b.
you were once blind but now can see c. the man in Memphis lived.
d. you have a retirement plan or trust fund. e. you use
13. Blues is not a matter of color. It's a matter of bad luck. Tiger
Woods cannot sing the blues. Gary Coleman could. Ugly white people also
got a leg up on the blues.
14. If you ask for water and Baby give you gasoline, it's the Blues.
Other acceptable Blues beverages are:
a. wine b. whiskey or bourbon c. muddy water
d. black, black coffee (NO cappuccinos)
The following are NOT Blues beverages: a.
mixed drinks b. kosher wine c. Snapple d. sparkling water
15. If it occurs in a cheap motel or a shotgun shack, it's a Blues death.
Stabbed in the back by a jealous lover is another Blues way to die. So
is the electric chair, substance abuse, and dying lonely on a broken-down
cot. You can't have a Blues death if you die during a tennis match or getting
liposuction or listening to Shania Twain.
16. Some Blues names for women: a. Sadie b. Big Mama
c. Bessie d. Fat River Dumpling
17. Some Blues names for men: a. Joe b. Willie c.
Little Willie d. Big Willie
18. Persons with names like Sierra, Sequoia, Auburn, Rainbow, Skip,
Jennifer, Jason, Murray, Bosley, Shania, Madonna, Cher, or Engelbert can't
sing the Blues no matter how many men they shoot in Memphis.
19. Make your own Blues name (starter kit): a. name of a physical
infirmity (Blind, Cripple, Lame, etc.) b. first name (see a above)
plus name of fruit (Lemon, Lime, etc.) c. add last name of President
(Jefferson, Johnson, Fillmore, etc.) For example, Blind Lime Jefferson,
or Cripple Kiwi Fillmore, etc. (Well, maybe not "Kiwi.")
20. I don't care how tragic your life is: you own a computer, you cannot
sing the blues. You best destroy it. Fire, a bottle of Mad Dog spilled
on the keyboard, or get out a shotgun. Maybe your big woman just done sat
on it. I don't care. Get rid of it. And don't ever sing about it.