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Lit Lovers Rejoice! Sir Archie Ferndoodle Rides Again.

28 Mar

by Roger White                                                                              


Fellow time/space voyagers and other occasional devotees of “This Old Blouse,” I am more tickled than a coffee can full of dung beetles to announce the return of my dear friend, back-porch expectorational master, and legendary raconteur of the obsequious and purulent, Sir Archie Ferndoodle (applause, applause, applause).

As I’m sure you remember, the esteemed Dr. Ferndoodle holds an associate’s degree in postmodern comparative limerick studies from the University of Southern Panama’s Correspondence College and has been featured five times in the American Anthology of Poetry. Just a few of his classics include “Oh, Staff Sergeant, My Staff Sergeant!,” “Why Is the Man Always from Nantucket?,” and possibly his greatest epic, “The Squirrels Stopped Talking to Me Today.”

Sir Archie has a rare treat for us in this installment. In his inimitable style, the Fernman has taken several classic tunes from the songbook of popular culture and rendered them as his own, with updated, shall we say, acerbic lyrics so pertinent to today’s manic milieu. Or something.

Disclaimer: The Spouseman—and the newspaper/periodical/bathroom wall compendium in which this diatribe appears—doesn’t necessarily agree with the views and opinions of Sir Archie. He is his own woman, and we bear no responsibility or legal burden for his espousings. So there.

With this heartfelt caveat (and sincere attempt to head off legal action), I give you Sir Archie’s renderings. By the way, it’s important to keep the tune of Archie’s specific song choice in your head for these to make any sense whatsoever. If that is, indeed, possible. So. Archie’s first offering is called “Ivanka in the White House”:


Ivanka in the White House

(to the tune of “Drive My Car” by The Beatles)

(verse 1)

“I asked my girl where she wanted to be,

In New York City or in D.C.,

She said Daddy, I wanna be near you,

In the White House with Jared the Jew.”



“Ivanka, you can have the West Wing,

We’ll set you up with all of your bling,

You can sell your furs and your rings,

And Dad will tweet for you.”


(verse 2)

“Barron’s got a floor to himself,

With a team of counselors for his mental health,

But Melania and I aren’t sharin’ a bed,

So you could move in with me instead.”



“Ivanka, you can have the West Wing,

Or you-know-where, I won’t say a thing,

Damn, it’s so good to be the king,

And Putin, I owe you.”


“Tweet, tweet n tweet, tweet, yeah!”


Um, ok. For his second favoring, the Fernman has rendered this ditty entitled “Perry in Charge”:


Perry in Charge

(to the tune of Tom Jones’ “She’s a Lady”)

(verse 1)

“Well, I’m the Energy Top Dude,

And now solar power’s screwed ’cause oil’s my cash cow,

Yeah, I ran for president,

I told Donald to get bent, but that’s all past now.”



“I’m Rick Perry, woah, woah, woah,

I’m Rick Perry,

Those rumors are false, ’cause I’m no fairy,

And I’m towin’ the Trump line.”


(verse 2)

“Well, I’m not sure what I do,

But I think I make the rules on nukular weapons,

But this can’t be as hard

As Dancing with the Stars, man, I was steppin’,”



“I’m Rick Perry, woah, woah, woah,

I’m Rick Perry,

Renewable power’s our adversary,

Let’s build that pipeline.”


And last, and surely least, Ferndude gives us “Lysergic Wood,” which he says is his ode to psychedelic substances:


Lysergic Wood, An Ode to LSD

(to the tune of The Beatles’ “Norwegian Wood”)

(verse 1)

“I once ate a squirrel,

Or should I say the squirrel ate me,

He showed me his brain,

We baked it into a nice quiche lorraine.”



“We smoked purple crayons,

As the walls melted into the sea,

Then Timothy Leary appeared

And said why’d you take three?”


(verse 2)

“I played canasta with Jesus,

His Holiness beat me two games out of threezus,

Then me and the squirrel flew to Mars,

But squirrel wasn’t squirrel, he was Pat Benatar.”



“We smoked purple crayons

As robots made love to the cow,

Then Hunter S. Thompson said man you’re in big trouble now.”


(verse 3)

“And when I awoke,

I was in a cell with a large man named Mel.

He kept pinching my ass,

Dear God from now on, I’m sticking with grass.”


Roger White Sir Archie Ferndoodle holds an associate’s degree in comparative limerick studies from the University of Southern Panama’s Correspondence College. Sir Archie’s classics include “Oh, Staff Sergeant, My Staff Sergeant!,” “Why Is the Man Always from Nantucket?,” and perhaps his greatest epic, “The Squirrels Stopped Talking to Me Today,” For further adventures, visit



My New Year’s Resolution: Silence Is Golden

10 Jan

by Roger White

Editor’s note: Leo Kottke replied to this. See the Comment at bottom.

I have one, and only one, resolution that I truly intend to adhere to, as difficult as it may be, for the year 2011. I’ve made serious resolutions with so many New Year’s Days gone by—you know the old standards, losing weight, saving money, drinking less, running more, reading a novel a month, curtailing bodily emissions, actually working at work—all of which have fallen by the wayside within weeks, days, even hours. (Woop, excuse me.)

But this time I mean it.

This solitary promise to myself for 2011, if successfully carried through, could have such significant import and beneficial consequences on not only my way of living and worldview but on those around me that perhaps a groundswell of greater good shall ripple through this land.

I vow, for this year at least, and hopefully on into the days beyond, to refrain from yelling “Free Bird!” at any concert, nightclub show, neighborhood party, school recital, or candidate forum.

Everyone truly hates this guy. Yes, at one time (and one time only) in the distant past, the screaming of “Free Bird!” at public events was original, and even a little funny. I conducted some extensive personal research and discovered the very first use of the “Free Bird!” scream (or FBS, as it’s known in this field). The first official utilization of the FBS in an attempt at humor was executed at the Yo Yo Ma concert with the Orchestra della Scala in Milan, Italy, in the summer of 1980. Near the end of Mr. Ma’s (Mr. Yo’s?) performance, during a particularly quiet interlude, a young man by the name of Arturo Rossingtono loudly and succinctly requested the Skynyrd anthem from the loge section, at which point he was whisked away by Italian authorities and subsequently spent 13 years in federal detention. Italians take their chamber music quite seriously.

In retrospect, it was an ideal application of the FBS. It was a nice, throaty delivery. Sigñor Rossingtono didn’t even laugh at his own joke. The juxtaposition of the musical stylings of Ma and Skyrnyd, the classical ambience and considerable risk factor involved, the exquisite timing (combining the acknowledgment that enough grace time had transpired since the Southern rock band’s tragic 1977 accident with the fact that the anthem was the most requested concert song since “Stairway”), and, of course, the sublime novelty of it all. It was grand.

Unfortunately for the world, the FBS went from sublime to succotash with one use. And if you think audiences deem the scream a tired prank, consider performers. For one of the most extreme reactions to an audience member using the FBS ploy, go to Youtube and look up Bill Hicks and Free Bird. This marvelous comedian, rest his soul, lost his everlovin’ mind during a show in Chicago. It was scary, fascinating, and most definitely not meant for younger listeners.

With this painful instance in mind, I must confess that I, too, did spew forth my own rendition of the FBS recently in a public venue. The twelve-string genius Leo Kottke was playing the Paramount Theater in Austin. Mind you, I adore Mr. Kottke. However, the only song of his I really know by name is “Pamela Brown,” his only single ever to make the charts. I’d had a couple of fizzy lifting drinks. I was happy and anxious to hear my favorite Leo tune. So, somehow, between songs, while Leo regaled the audience with his tales of wit and insight, it slipped out.

“Pamela Brown!”

My wife hit me in the leg, but it swayed me not in the least. At the next interval, it leapt out again. I couldn’t stop it.

“Pamela Brown!”

Leo tuned up some more and then launched into another story. Now, if you’ve never been to a Kottke concert, understand that listening to his stories is as enrapturing as watching his fingers make like Medusa’s hairdo on the frets. Little did I know that this next little talk was aimed at me, however. Leo proceeded to share an experience he had with one particularly stubborn, apparently dimwitted police officer on a rural road. Despite all his protestations and bountiful evidence, Kottke could not convince this country lawman that he did not deserve the citation he was writing.

Leo summed up his tale with a moral: “You can’t argue with a moron.” He then obligingly played the song I so vociferously requested. I sat there in my seat, all three inches tall, looking up, way up, at my wife, sheepish and silent. Silent I remained for the rest of the show. (I later found out that “Pamela Brown” isn’t even a Kottke original. The song was written by Tom T. Hall two years before Leo sang it.)

So, blessedly silent I shall be, for this year at least. If you hear some moron bellowing “Free Bird!” at the next concert, it’s not me, buddy.