When the following landed in the Radio London 'In' box, we thought that, with a little anglicizing and judicious editing, the subject would appeal to our listeners. Mary has dun – sorry – DONE just that and added your own Anorak Blues supplement. Sorry we can't credit the unknown original US author.

Instructions for singing 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 line right, repeat it. 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 broken-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 an' company cars 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'.

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 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 rain.

8. A man with male pattern baldness ain't the Blues. A woman with male pattern baldness is. Breaking your leg cuz you skiing is not the Blues. Breaking your leg cuz an alligator be chomping on it 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.

10. Good places for the Blues:
a. highway
b. jailhouse
c. empty bed
d. bottom of a whiskey glass.

Bad places:
a. Tupperware parties
b. art gallery openings
c. Knightsbridge shops
d. golf courses

11. No one will believe it's the Blues if you wear a suit, 'less you happen to be an ancient ethnic person, and you slept in it.

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

13. Blues is not a matter of color. It's a matter of bad luck. Tiger Woods cannot sing the Blues. Eddie the Eagle 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. gin
b. whiskey or bourbon
c. muddy water
d. black coffee.

The following are NOT Blues beverages:
a. gin-and-tonic
b. organic fruit juice
c. sparkling mineral water
e. Earl Grey

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, the railroad track, substance abuse, and dying lonely on a broken down cot. It ain't no Blues death if you pop your clogs during a tennis match or getting liposuction.

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, Laurence, Tarquin and Rainbow can't sing no Blues no matter how many men they've shot in Memphis. People with trendy Irish names can sing the Irish Blues (i.e. The Emeralds) if they've shot a man in Dublin.

19. Make your own Blues name (starter kit):
a. name of physical infirmity (Blind, Cripple, Lame, etc.)
b. first name (see above) plus name of fruit (Lemon, Lime, Kiwi, etc.).
c. last name of US President (Jefferson, Johnson, Fillmore, etc.)

For example, Blind Lime Jefferson, or Cripple Kiwi Fillmore, etc. (Well, maybe not 'Kiwi'.)
Deaf Banana Clinton don't work too good either.

20. Don't care how tragic your life: you own a computer, you cannot sing the Blues. You best destroy it. Fire, a spilled bottle of Mad Dog, or get out a shotgun. Maybe your big woman just done sat on it. I don't care.

UK Anorak Supplement

An anorak is the perfect garment to wear while singing the Blues, and we down-home, hard-done-by Anoraks have a whole lotta Blues to sing.

Lines from popular Anorak Blues ditties include:

Ma anchor chain dun busted

Ah washed my face in salty water

Ah'm sick as a dawg and ma needle dun jumpin'

Lord knows when the lifeboat's a-comin'

They dun towed ma tub to Amsterdam

Ain't nothin' on the radio

They dun turned off dat analog transmitter

Feel free to send your own suggestions for the Anorak Blues!

Back to 'Kneesflashes'