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Saturday: January 14, 2012

Coincidence? or Allusion?

Filed under: — site admin @ 4:57 PM GMT-0500

John Edwards’ lawyer claims that he can’t answer the serious charges against him until March because he suffers from a “serious heart condition that will require a medical procedure next month” (þ Cold Fury). That’s an interesting choice of words. “Serious Heart Condition” is the title of a song by the Two Dollar Pistols, a honky-tonk band from Chapel Hill. Edwards’ mansion is just west of Chapel Hill in Orange County.

The lyrics are not on-line, so I’ve transcribed them, with a question mark for the one syllable I can’t quite make out – if you’ve heard the song and can help, put your suggestions in the comments:

Well, I can’t go on livin’,
but if livin’ is this way,
a steady diet of sour grapes
made me the man I am today.

Now I thought it might just be a phase,
but that was only wishin’.
The doctor told me there’s no hope:
I got a serious heart condition.

A serious heart condition:
There ain’t nothin’ they can do.
They gave me three to six months to ease the pain
of walkin’ on [?] to you.

But having you here in my arms
would be the best prescription.
But if you go I’m left alone
with a serious heart condition.

I could feel myself burn
with desire for you, I’m sure,
but the heartache will be returnin’,
when you walk out the door.

Now how am I supposed to cope
when a part of me’s gone missin’?
The doctor told me there’s no hope:
I got a serious heart condition.

(Repeat Stanzas 3-4)

(Instrumental break)

(Repeat Stanzas 3-4)
If you go I’m left alone
with a serious heart condition.

I’m not the only one who doubts whether Edwards has anything wrong with his heart – physically, I mean: there’s plenty else wrong with it -, and these lyrics only reinforce my doubts. (Having his lawyer say that he needs “a procedure” rather than “an operation” adds to my dubiety.) I hope his lawyer’s choice of phrase isn’t a sly joke, using ambiguous language to suggest a medical problem without quite lying, since a messy love-life could also be described as “a serious heart condition”, as in the song. How messy is Edwards’ love-life? He left his wife for a woman with a disturbing resemblance to David Spade (no links: Google them both yourself, if you dare). Of course, if he ever claims to have come down with “Honkytonkitis”, or admits to suffering from “Heartaches and Hangovers”, we’ll know for sure.

Amazingly, Wikipedia has no article on the Two Dollar Pistols. Amazon has all six of their albums for sale, with the usual audio snippets, so you can easily judge whether you like them as much as I do. YouTube also has plenty of Two Dollar Pistols performances, though not (so far as I can tell from a quick glance) this song.

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