Monday, September 19, 2011

Reality Hits You Hard, Bro

A somewhat exuberant eyewitness to an auto accident in Phoenix. (via Bits and Pieces)

Growing up in the 70s as I did, Harry Chapin was not only a staple on the radio ("Cat's In The Cradle" was on constantly), but we had several of his albums at home as well that got frequent play. This song, "30,000 Pounds of Bananas", is from his 1974 Verities & Balderdash and was a perennial crowd favorite at his live shows, though the band apparently didn't care for the song all that much. It's a macabre story-song about a young truck driver "just out on his second job", bringing a load of just about 30,000 pounds of you-know-whats to you-know-where. Unfortunately, as he begins his descent down the steep grade going into the city, he's thinking about his girl and misses the sign warning him to shift to low gear. Once the brakes go out, the perfect storm is in place.

What I didn't know was that this was based on an actual event that took place on March 18,1965. The lyrics of the song are not too far from what actually transpired.

Harry Chapin - 30,000 Pounds of Bananas

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