Is This Really Just A Coincidence?
I'd already written the major part of this week's newsletter ('Surfing With The Rubber Duck', below) when my thoughts turned to the question of the Song A’ Th’ Week. Since beginning that feature, I've been choosing a different C.W. song every week, with the intention of eventually running through the entire 64-song list. And I wondered if/when I should repeat a song that had already been featured.
Well, that time is now, and the coincidence is surprising. First I find an old rec.music.info message that was posted by one 'Ken Thompson' in 1993, then I get a message from Ken Thompson that points me to a new article on the Durango & Silverton Railway in the July 4th issue of the Arizona Star. Finally, I discover that one year ago this week, on July 7th, 1998, I had first posted the lyrics to 'The Silverton'!
I can take a hint.
For extra points, you can visit The Durango & Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad official site, which has further information on the train, including a history, pictures, and online reservations.
Surfing With The Rubber Duck
Every once in a while, I visit a few search engines and look for references to "C.W. McCall" and "Bill Fries". Most of the hits, strangely enough, are for pages at techren.com. Go figure. :)
But sometimes I do find references to the Bill Fries, and not to a street in Hilton Head, South Carolina or amateur astronomers or snowboarders from Massachussetes (yes, that is the spelling on the page).
What I've discovered this week:
- Does Bill Fries golf? According to the ALT tag -- "bill fries golf" -- of this picture on the Ridgway Chamber of Commerce site, I think that one of these players is a guy named "Bill Fries". Can't tell if it's our Bill, though he does live near Ridgway.
- And speaking of Ken Thompson, he once attempted to start a discography of C.W. McCall, according to a message posted to rec.music.info in 1993.
- On the Narrow Gauge Circle, there's Autumn In The San Juan, which contains a quote from the San Juan Odyssey show that was mentioned on the Other Wild Places mailing list earlier this week.
- For the trucker, Virtual Truck Route has Real Audio clips from trucking songs, including a brief excerpt from "Wolf Creek Pass".
- More evidence of obessive fanboy activity can be found with this, yet another transcription of the lyrics to "Convoy".
- And be sure to visit Pagosa Springs, Colorado By Car, which is probably most famous as the place where C.W. and Earl bashed into the side a' the feed store.
- This is an oblique reference, but there's an obituary of Anna Fries in the Sioux City Journal. Her husband was named Bill, but he wasn't our Bill. Could he have been a relative?
- Trucking In American Popular Culture, from The World & I. Curiously, Michael Perry -- the author of this piece -- refers to "...the gravel-pit drawl of professional disc jockey Bill Fries...". Professional DJ? And I though that my research was shoddy.
- Lastly, Bill gets quoted in A Slick Idea about ice climbing in Ouray, from Empire Magazine, part of The Denver Post Online.
Horses are bulletproof. As I write this, I'm watching the Wild Wild Western Festival on TNT, which is currently showing Per un pugno di dollari, a.k.a. "Fistful Of Dollars". There's a scene in which a Gatling gun is used to mow down (and I mean mow) about twenty Mexican soliders. The victims are standing around horses and riding horses, and they all die. But none of the horses are injured! Not a scratch. Maybe the horses are Kryptonian?
Song A’ Th’ Week
Down by the station, early in the mornin', see the little passengers all in a row...
(C.W. McCall, Bill Fries, Chip Davis)
From the album Black Bear Road.