lifeblood: socs: 1995-03-24: chickenman (the backyard - austin, texas)


listen:

chickenman (15:22) (wav)

amy ray during chickenman:

we used to drive all the way, we drove in to texas. sometimes we drove up to canada and the weird thing about driving is that when you drive yourself around you see a lot more shit in my mind. i started counting up all the dead things i'd been seeing, forgot to count the first 20 years of my life...i didn't mean that...so i was counting everything up, it became kind of an obsession. one day i was running up in canada and i saw a woman beat up and i stopped counting coz i realized that it was just too much. i started writing this song and i was remembering driving through the south, through alabama, and mississippi. somehow we ended up in texas in houston in this bar and our car was full of fast food cups and straws and burger king this and mcdonalds that and candy bars...meat, meat meat more meat, more grease, more grease, more grease...and on the way the radiator thing, the little grill thing that protects everything...there will bugs just bugs everywhere and it occured to me that the bugs were as big as the dog was in someways...and i became obsessed again. so here we are, we're driving and we're playing in this club in houston and it's called fitzgerlad's and the club owner was kind enough to put us up in his brothel for the night and here we are, we're goign to sleep, we're getting our sleeping bags out and out come all the people with the rock and roll and the drugs and the booze adn i'm thinking, "this is the one time in my life that i don't want to see any of this stuff." so we get some sleep, i think, but it's morning and we're driving up to austin coz we're thinking "salvation!" we're heading up through austin there it's the blue garnet (?!? k) and the bugs are dying on the radiator grill and the car windows are down and the birds are flying into the headlights and the dogs are getting hit all over the place and the cats are all over the place and i'm think this is really...icky. we want to lift our spirits up a little bit, we stop at this flea market on the side of the road, i can't remember the name of it but i remember one thing...i bought a radio there for really cheap...so emily's asleep in the car and i'm walking through the flea market and my head is full of pricetags and material things and i'm thinking i feel a lot better right now and i don't care if my values are low and my ethics are wrong! this feels pretty good. so i walk out of this flea market and i'm looking next door and there's this lawn of stuff spread out on tables and more tables and a couple of big ole trailers and a big ole fire pit in back of the place, this is the coolest damn thing i could have ever seen in my whole life! so i looked around at all the tables and i'm seeing all this stuff that i'm collecting in my mind, all the things i'm gonna buy, my eyes are getting bigger and bigger and bigger and i'm thinking the car is just not big enough, just not big enough, not big enough. so i'm looking at the price tags and...there aren't any pricetags...and i'm thinking to myself, okay, maybe there's somebody around here to help me. so an old guy walks out of his trailer and he's really cool looking, he's got long hair and it's matted with bugs and dirt and all this kind of stuff is in his hair and his clothes are all really cool and they're hanging off of him and it's like the grunge from ten years ago and it was really happening and i'm thinking he's got all the wisdom in the world and there's something i'm supposed to say to him besides how much is this book or how much is this but i walk up to him and i'm thinking i'll break the conversation open and i say, "how much is this, sir?" and he says, "it's not for sale." i hold this up and he says, "that's not for sale either." well i wanna know what can i buy today and he says, "nothing. you're in my front yard." this is a sign, i think, this is a sign. i'm walking around with all these things in my eyes and i'm really full and i'm thinking this is a sign and so i look at him and i'm thinking okay, there's so many things i want to ask this man, he's been living here i know he's really cool, i'm getting vibes from this guy, i want to share with him all my heart and everything i'm experiencing. so i'm thinking, i've got all these questions inside and i'm thinking what do you want to ask him? what do i want to ask him? okay, sir, how long have you lived here? when you look at the road at night and there's all these lumps laying in the middle of the highway, are you thinking to yourself i'm really depressed, do you want to go and save everything? and don't you get obsessed like i do about everything? and do you have someone that you really love you're really so in love that you can't stand it and you want to leave something behind and you want something to breathe life into everything you do and do you look up at the sky do you see the stars and do you think of god and do you think of trees? do you think of life? i mean, when you're looking at the dog and it's been hit and it's screaming and barking and it's itching and when you're looking at the ground do you think about all those maggots that are going to crawl inside your body and out of your veins and into your mouth and when you look at me do you think are you thinking there's some dumbass fool in my yard tresspassing on my land and do you know what the meaning of life is?!? but i look up at the sky and i see this sign and it says chickenman and i just walk away.
i was on the road to austin...


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