spatch: (Bankrupt)
[personal profile] spatch
May be broke. May be unable to find work. May be creatively bankrupt. May have failed at every single thing I've done these past few months. May have lost all perspective on what I am capable of because of this, because all evidence points to complete and utter incapability. May completely and utterly hate myself for this. May be watching this country finally swirl down the toilet after orbiting the rim for decades.

But at least there's still Arlo

And don't nobody jinx that right now.

This song is called Alice's Restaurant
It's about Alice
And the restaurant
But Alice's Restaurant is not the name of the restaurant, that's just the name of the song
And that's why I called the song Alice's Restaurant.
You can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant
You can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant
Walk right in, it's around the back
Just a half a mile from the railroad track
And you can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant.
Now it all started two Thanksgivings ago, was on--
Two years ago on Thanksgiving
When my friend and I went up to visit Alice at the restaurant
But Alice doesn't live in the restaurant, she lives in the church nearby the restaurant
In the bell tower
With her husband Ray
And Fascha the dog
And livin in the bell tower like that
They got a lot of room downstairs where the pews used to be in
And havin all that room, seein as how they took out all the pews
They decided they didn't have to take out their garbage for a long time

We got up there, we found all the garbage in there
And we decided it'd be a
Friendly gesture for us to take the garbage down to the City Dump

So we took the half a ton of garbage
Put it in the back of a red VW Microbus
Took shovels and rakes and implements of de-struction
And headed on toward the City Dump.

Well we got there, and there was a big sign and a chain across the dump sayin "Closed on Thanksgiving" and
We had never heard of a dump closed on Thanksgiving before
And with tears in our eyes, we drove off into the sunset looking for another place to put the garbage.

We didn't find one

'Til we came to a side road, and off the side of the side road
Was another fifteen foot cliff
And at the bottom of the cliff was another pile of garbage

And we decided that one big pile was better than two little piles
And rather than bring that one up, we decided to throw ours down
That's what we did
Drove back to the church, had a Thanksgiving dinner that couldn't be beat
Went to sleep, and didn't get up until the next morning

When we got a phone call
From Officer Obie.

Said "Kid, we found your name on an envelope at the bottom of a half a ton of garbage, and just wanted to know if you had any information about it."

and I said "Yes sir, Officer Obie, I cannot tell a lie,
I put that envelope under that garbage."

After speaking to Obie for about forty-five minutes on the telephone, we finally arrived at the Truth of The Matter
and said that we had to go down and pick the garbage
and also had to go down and speak to him at the Police Officer's Station, so we got into the red VW Microbus with the shovels and rakes and implements of de-struction
and headed on towards the Police Officer's Station.

Now friends, there was only one of two things that Obie coulda done at the Police Station
And the first was that he could've give us a medal for bein so brave and honest on the telephone
which wasn't very likely, and we didn't expect it
And the other thing was that he could've bawled us out and told us never to be seen driving garbage around the vicinity again
Which is what we expected

But when we got to the Police Officer's Station, there was a third possibility that we hadn't even counted upon
And we was both immediately arrested.
Handcuffed.
And I said "Obie, I don't think I can pick up the garbage with these handcuffs on"
He said "Shut up, kid, and get in the back of the patrol car"
And that's what we did
We sat in the patrol car
And drove to the quote
Scene Of The Crime
Unquote

I want to tell you about the town of Stockbridge, Massachusetts, where this happened here
They got three stop signs, two police officers and one po-lice car
But when we got to the Scene Of The Crime
There was five police officers, three police cars
Bein' the biggest crime of the last fifty years, and everybody wanted to get in the newspaper story about it
And they was usin' up all kinds of cop equipment that they had hanging around the Police Officer's Station
They was takin' plaster tire tracks
Footprints
Dog smellin' prints
And they took twenty-seven eight-by-ten color glossy photographs
With circles and arrows
And a paragraph on the back of each one
Explainin' what each one was
To be used as evidence against us.

Took pictures of the approach, the getaway
The northwest corner and southwest corner
And that's not to mention the aerial photography...

After the ordeal, we went back to the jail
Obie said he was gonna put us in the cell
Said "Kid, I'm gonna put you in the cell
I want your wallet and your belt."
And I said "Obie, I can understand you wantin' my wallet so I don't have any money to spend in the cell
But what do you want my belt for?"
And he said "Kid, we don't want any hangings."
Said "Obie, did you think I was gonna hang myself for littering?"

Obie said he was makin sure and friends, Obie was
Because he took out the toilet seat so I couldn't hit myself over the head and drown
And he took out the toilet paper so I couldn't bend the bars
Roll out -- roll the toilet paper out the window
Slide down the roll
And have an e-scape

Obie was makin sure, and it was about four or five hours later that Alice

Remember Alice?
It's a song about Alice.


Alice came by
And with a few nasty words to Obie on the side
Bailed us out of jail

And we went back to the church
Had another Thanksgiving dinner that couldn't be beat
And didn't get up until the next morning
When we all had to go to court.

We walked in, sat down
Obie came in with the twenty-seven eight-by-ten color glossy pictures with the circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one
Sat down

Man came in, said "All rise", we all stood up and Obie stood up
With the twenty-seven eight-by-ten color glossy pictures
And the judge walked in, sat down
With a seeing-eye dog, and he sat down
We sat down
Obie looked at the seeing-eye dog.
And then at the twenty-seven eight-by-ten color glossy pictures with the circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one.
And looked at the seeing-eye dog.
And then at the twenty-seven eight-by-ten color glossy pictures with the circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one and began to cry,
Cause Obie came to the realization that it was a typical case of American blind justice
And there wasn't nothing he could do about it, and the judge wasn't gonna look at the twenty-seven eight-by-ten color glossy pictures with the circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one, explainin what each one was to be used as evidence against us.

And we was fined fifty dollars and had to pick up the garbage in the snow
But that's not what I came to tell you about.

Came to talk about the draft

Got a building down New York City, it's called Whitehall Street
Where you walk in and you get injected, inspected, detected, infected, neglected and selected
I went down to get my physical examination one day
I walked in, sat down
Got good and drunk the night before so I looked and felt my best when I went in that morning
Cause I wanted to look like the All-American Kid from New York City
Man, I wanted-- I wanted to feel like the All--
I wanted to be the All-American Kid from New York, and I walked in, sat down,
I was hung down, brung down, hung up, and all kinds of mean, nasty, ugly things
And I walked in, I sat down, they gave me a piece of paper and said "Kid,
See the psychiatrist in Room 604."
And I went up there, said "Shrink,
I wanna kill.
I mean, I wanna - I wanna kill.
Kill.
I wanna-- I wanna see-- I wanna see blood and gore and guts and veins in my teeth, eat dead burnt bodies
I mean, kill...
Kill?
Kill?!
KILL!!
And I started jumpin up and down yelling "KILL!! KILL?!"
And he started jumpin up and down with me and we was both jumpin up and down yellin "KILL!! KILL!!"
And the sergeant came over, pinned a medal on me, sent me down the hall, said "You're our boy."

Didn't feel too good about it...

Proceeded on down the hall, gettin more injections, inspections, detections, neglections and all kinds of stuff that they were doing to me at the thing there, and I was there for two hours, three hours, four hours,

I was there for a long time going through all kinds of mean, nasty, ugly things and I was just having a tough time there, and they was inspecting, injecting every single part of me, and they was leavin no part untouched.

Proceeded through, and I finally came to see the very last man
I walked in, walked in, sat down after a whole big thing there
And I walked up and said "Whaddya want?"
And he said "Kid, we only got one question...

...have you ever been arrested?"

And I proceeded to tell him the story of Alice's Restaurant Massacree with full orchestration and five-part harmony and stuff like that and he stopped me right there and said "Kid,

Did you ever go to court?"

And I proceeded to tell him the story of the twenty-seven eight-by-ten color glossy pictures with the circles and arrows and a paragraph on the back of each one, and he stopped me right there and said "Kid,
I want you to go over and sit down on that bench that says Group W...
NOW, Kid!"

...

And I
I walked over to
To the bench there
And there's
There's Group W
Is where they
Where they put you if you may not be moral enough to join the Army after committin' your special crime
And there was all kinds of mean, nasty, ugly lookin people on the bench there
There's mother rapers...
Father stabbers...
Father rapers...
Father rapers sittin right there on the bench next to me!

And they was mean and nasty and ugly and horrible and crime type guys was sittin there on the bench
And the meanest, ugliest, nastiest one,
The meanest father raper of them all was comin over to me
And he was mean and ugly and nasty and horrible and all kinds of things
And he sat down next to me and said "Kid,
What'd you get?"
Said "I didn't get nothin, I had to pay fifty dollars and had to pick up the garbage."
He said "What were you arrested for, Kid?"

And I said "Littering..."

And they all moved away from me on the bench there
And the hairy eyeball and all kinds of mean, nasty things
Until I said "...and creatin' a nuisance"

And they all came back, shook my hand, and we had a great time on the bench
Talkin about crime, mother stabbing, father raping, all kinds of groovy things that we was talking about on the bench
And everything was fine, we was smoking cigarettes and all kinds of things
Until the sergeant came over
Had some paper in his hand
Held it up, and said "Kids,

This-piece-of-paper's-got-forty-seven-words-thirty-seven-sentences-fifty-eight-words-we-want-to-know-details-of-the-crime-time-of-the-crime-and-any-other-kind-of-thing-you-gotta-say-pertaining-to-and-about-the-crime-I-want-to-know-arresting-officer's-name-and-any-other-kind-of-thing-you-gotta-say"

And he talked for forty-five minutes and nobody understood a word that he said
But we had fun fillin out the forms and playing with the pencils on the bench there
I filled out the Massacree with the four-part harmony and wrote it down there, just like it was
And everything was fine, and I put down my pencil and I turned over the piece of paper

And there
There on the other side
In the middle of the other side
Away from everything else on the other side
In parentheses
Capital letters
Quotated
Read the following words:

( "KID,
HAVE YOU REHABILITATED YOURSELF?" )


I went over to the Sergeant and said "Sergeant,
You got a lot of damn gall to ask me if I've rehabilitated myself, I mean
I mean,
I mean,
I'm sittin here on the bench,
I mean, I'm sittin here on the Group W Bench
Cause you want to know if I'm moral enough to join the Army
And burn women, kids, houses, and villages
After being a litterbug"

And looked at me and said "Kid, we don't like your kind, and we're gonna send your fingerprints off to Washington" and friends, somewhere in Washington, enshrined in some little folder
Is a study in black and white of my fingerprints
And the only reason I'm singing you this song now is cause you may know somebody in a similar situation
Or you may be in a similar situation
And if you're in a situation like that there's only one thing you can do
Walk into the shrink wherever you are
Just walk in, say "Shrink...

You can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant."

And walk out...

You know, if one person
Just one person does it
They may think he's really sick and they won't take him

And if two people, two people do it
In harmony
They may think they're both faggots and they won't take either of them

And if three people do it
Three--
Can you imagine three people walking in, singing a bar of Alice's Restaurant and walking out,
They may think it's an organization

And can you -- can you imagine fifty people a day,
I said fifty people a day
Walking in, singing a bar of Alice's Restaurant and walking out
And friends, they may think it's a movement

And that's what it is:
The Alice's Restaurant Anti-Massacree Movement
And all you gotta do to join is to sing it the next time it comes around on the guitar
With feelin
So we'll wait til it comes around on the guitar here
And sing it when it does
Here it comes
You can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant
You can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant
Walk right in, it's around the back
Just a half a mile from the railroad track
And you can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant.
That was horrible.

If you wanna end war and stuff, you gotta sing loud.

You could put a lot-- I've been singing this song now for twenty-five minutes
I could sing for another twenty-five minutes
I'm not proud...
or tired...

So we'll wait til it comes around again
And this time with four-part harmony and feeling...

We're just waiting for it to come around is what we're doing...

All right now?
You can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant (excepting Alice)
You can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant
Said walk right in, it's around the back
Just a half a mile from the railroad track
And you can get anything you want at Alice's Restaurant.
La da da da da da da dum
At Alice's
Restaurant
-- Arlo Guthrie




Sorry this one's so dark, folks, but this is the darkest it's been in over a decade. Peace.
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