By: Zach Mitcham
The Banks County News
December 15, 2004
When it comes to lyrics, ‘tape it to a biscuit’
Sometimes I find as I’m driving down the road, singing along with a song, that the wrong lyric is more fun than the right one.
“Just like a one wing dove, sings a song sounds like she’s singing. Whoo, baby, whoo, baby, whoo.”
My wife, Jana, looked at me like I was crazy, noting that apart from the sorry singing the Stevie Nicks song went nothing like that.
“One wing dove? It’s wild wing dove.”
We both laughed. She pictured a dove breezing through the air, wild in the wind, full of life. I imagined a one-winged dove flopping in circles on the ground, unable to fly, a sad sight.
Perhaps this could be material for some psychiatrist who could find a deeper meaning to our conflicting images of the dove.
But I wasn’t going to go down easy in this argument. I was just certain the lyrics were “one wing dove.” I insisted, again.
“Well, that’s just pitiful,” she said in a tone equal to a pat on the head. “She didn’t say one wing.”
So we made a bet, each certain we were right.
Then I told Jana of some other songs I had misunderstood in the past: for instance, that Jimi Hendrix song “If six was nine.” For quite some time, I thought Hendrix said, “Now if a cyst turned out benign, I don’t mind.”
I always thought that was kind of a lapse in taste on Hendrix’s part.
“Well, of course, he wouldn’t mind if it was benign,” I thought. “And why bring up a cyst in a rock song? Doesn’t that kind of ruin the song?”
But, of course, I was wrong. He actually sings what’s in the song title, “If a six turned out to be nine, I don’t mind.” It was my faulty ears that put the unpleasant medical imagery in his song.
Then there’s that Van Halen song that I thought said, “Now don’t you see me standing here I got my back against the record machine, I eat the works that you’ve seen.”
No, there’s actually no eating of “works” in the song, no consumption of art gallery pieces. David Lee Roth (who is reportedly now training to become a paramedic) actually says “I ain’t the worst that you’ve seen.”
Many websites are devoted to misunderstood lyrics. Some of the funniest entries I’ve seen include: Bachman-Turner Overdrive’s “Tape it to a biscuit” instead of “Taking care of business.” (Funny, yes, but could someone really be that mistaken, believing a song was devoted to Scotch tape on a biscuit? I kind of doubt it.)
Then there’s the Steve Miller Band’s “Big ole Jed had a light on” instead of “Big old jet airliner.” Or Paul Young’s “Every time you go away, you take a piece of meat with you” instead of the actual song which is “...a piece of me with you.”
The misunderstood song lyric is something to be appreciated, but the source of headaches if you look at it from the other end, the side of the songwriter.
I admit, I’ve stayed up many nights trying to write songs. And I don’t mean I’m looking for a hit. I’m realistic. I just do it for the fun of it.
But more times than not, I sit down with my guitar these days and just try to come up with music that moves me, not even worrying about writing words. For one, I get frustrated with writing bad lyrics.
But, also, who’s going to understand what you say anyway?
Seriously, if you’ve written a song, played it for somebody, then asked someone what they heard, you can probably relate.
“What’s that part you said about the ghost?”
“No, man, that word was ‘coast.’”
“Well, you need to pronounce your words better.”
So I try to do that, but as I work harder to make everything intelligible, to make my mouth form each word appropriately, I feel as if the song resonates like an AT&T automated voice message.
Ultimately, I guess the key is not to care, not to worry too much about being misunderstood or not hearing a song right. Cause it can all be fun in the end.
Just let it flow on out, like a wild wing dove.
Or a one wing dove.
It’s actually “white” wing dove. So we both lost the bet.
But I like ours better.
Zach Mitcham is editor of The Madison County Journal.
By: Angela Gary
The Banks County News
December 15, 2004
Problems with doctors
The rising cost of medical care and ever-increasing insurance costs are concerns of everyone. In fact, not many weeks go by that I don’t hear some horror story from someone about medical or insurance concerns.
A $55,000 hospital bill for a two-day stay. A $5,000 emergency room bill with insurance only paying $1,000. Medicine that isn’t covered by insurance even though the doctor says you must take it. These are just some of the problems family and friends I know are dealing with.
While this is stressful enough, I have become more and more concerned about doctors who just don’t care about their patients. Someone very close to me recently suffered a miscarriage and what she went through is a nightmare that no woman should have to suffer.
She went to her doctor, in a neighboring county, and took a pregnancy test. The nurse excitedly told her that she was pregnant. When she explained problems that she had been suffering over the weekend, the nurse took a blood test. She told her to come back in two days and see if the level of pregnancy hormone had decreased. If so, she had suffered a miscarriage. She never saw a doctor.
Two days later, she went back and spent another five minutes with the nurse for a blood test. She still didn’t’ see a doctor. She was told they would call her the next day with the results. She had no idea whether she had suffered a miscarriage or not.
She was at work the next day and called the doctor’s office three times before finally getting the results. It was late in the afternoon and she was in tears before she finally convinced them to look at her test results. She had suffered a miscarriage. She waited four days to find this out and never once saw a doctor. This is just not right.
The nurse told her to come back in one week for another blood test to see if the pregnancy hormone was out of her system. One week later, she was back with the nurse for another five minutes. She asked when she would get the results, and the nurse said, “If you don’t hear from us by the end of the week, give us a call.”
During this entire ordeal, she never saw a doctor. She was never examined. She never found out what might have caused the miscarriage. She never found out what the next step will be if the hormone is not out of her system. She was given no information, or sympathy, at all.
A miscarriage is a very stressful thing, and no one deserves to be treated in this manner. This doctor’s group lost one patient, but I hate to think of the other women who are suffering under their care.
Angela Gary is editor of The Banks County News and associate editor of The Jackson Herald.