How to sing the Blues . . . A Primer

 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. Yes, I got a good
 woman with the meanest face in town. Got teeth like Margaret
 Thatcher, and she weigh 500 pound."

 4) The Blues is not about choice. You stuck in a ditch, you
 stuck in a ditch--ain't no way out.

 5) Blues cars: Chevys, Fords, 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' state-sponsored motor pools
 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. 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 Minneapolis or Seattle is
 probably just clinical depression. Chicago, St. Louis, and
 Kansas City are 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 cause you
 skiing is not the blues. Breaking your leg 'cause a alligator
 be chomping on it is.

 9) You can't have no Blues in a office or a shopping mall. The
 lighting is wrong. Go outside to the parking lot or sit by the

 10) Good places for the Blues: a) Highway; b) Jailhouse; c)
 Empty bed; d) Bottom of a whiskey glass. Bad places for the
 Blues: a) Dillard's; b) Gallery openings; c) Ivy League
 institutions; d) Golf courses

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

 12) Do you have the right to sing the Blues? Yes, if a) You
 older than dirt; b) You 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 401K or trust fund.

 13) Blues is not a matter of colour. It's a matter of bad luck.
 Tiger Woods cannot sing the blues. Sonny Liston could. Ugly
 white people also got a leg up on the blues.

 14) If you ask for water and your darlin' give you gasoline,
 it's the Blues. Other acceptable Blues beverages are a) Cheap
 wine; b) Whiskey or bourbon; c) Muddy water; d) Nasty black
 coffee. The following are NOT Blues beverages: a) Perrier; b)
 Chardonnay; c) Snapple; d) Slim Fast.

 15) If death 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, substance
 abuse and dying lonely on a broken down cot. You can't have a
 Blues death if you die during a tennis match or getting

 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 Michelle, Amber, Debbie, and
 Heather can't sing the Blues no matter how many men they shoot
 in Memphis.

 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 President (Jefferson, Johnson, Fillmore, etc.); d) For
 example, Blind Lime Jefferson, Jakeleg Lemon Johnson or
 Cripple Kiwi Fillmore, etc. (Well, maybe not "Kiwi.")

 20) I don't care how tragic your life, if you own a computer,
 you cannot sing the blues.

Bald Apple Nixon (aka Curmudgeon)