My ears often twists lyrics into words the ears want to hear, not the ones the singer actually said. As I was listening to the radio the other morning, I heard a country song in which the singer kept turning his truck around at the Georgia state line, but I never heard what the problem was. Was he not licensed to drive in Georgia? Did his route end in South Carolina? Or did he have a restraining order that kept him out of the state and therefore away from his true love? The last possibility intrigued me. Country songs are very tradition-bound, generally holding to a handful of well-worn themes - God, guns, pickup trucks, dogs, youthful hell-raising, the joys of family, and the heartbreak of cheatin' women - but perhaps the genre could use some updating. Here are some ideas:
For the Facebook generation: "He Unfriended Her Today" (to the tune of George Jones' classic "He Stopped Loving Her Today")
For the unhappy couple who has had to resort to the law to mediate the breakup: "I Got the Dog, She Got the Restraining Order"
For the true-blue boyfriend in an Internet romance: "I Walked the (Fiber Optic) Line"
For the country yuppies: "There's a Tear in My Microbrew"
For those who like Patsy Cline's "Crazy": "On Antipsychotics" ("I'm on antipsychotics/On antipsychotics for tryin'/On antipsychotics for cryin'/Over you.")
For the blue-collar crowd: "(I Moved) 16 Tonnes (That's 15.7472 Short Tons)"
For the transgendered: "A Boy Who Used to be Named Sue"
For the workplace litigation crowd: "Hey Good Lookin' (I Mean that In a Non-Harassing Way)"
For the greens: "Help My Prius Make It Through the Night"
For the politically-correct: "Mama, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up and Play Cowboys"