The Legend-News

Monday, 2001 September 24 : Volume 4, Number 20

What We Got Here

Not much.
Song A’ Th’ Week: "Old Glory".

There ought to be something interesting occupying this space; but unless you've been living in a cave, you know that the most interesting item of current note isn't related to C.W. McCall. Yeah, we ought to be 'back to normal' here at The Legend-News, but we really don't feel that way yet.

We'd thought about writing an editorial on the situation, but anything that we can say has been said by others, and in a better fashion. We have just one observation.

When there's a mad dog in your backyard, you don't attempt to reason with it. Everyone knows that it's futile. The only rational response is to kill the dog before it harms someone.

That's our opinion.

More than 300 firefighters died in New York City. They died because they were doing their job, attempting to rescue persons in distress. Ed.'s dad (Ed.'s the head guy here at The Legend-News, remember?) was a firefighter with the Chicago Fire Department for 25 years. He successfully retired, fortunately. So The Legend-News is donating a few bucks to The Leary Firefighters Foundation, an organization which was established by actor Denis Leary in the aftermath of the Worcester, Massachusetts warehouse fire of 1999. A separate fund, The Leary Firefighters Foundation Fund for New York's Bravest, has been created to aid the families of those lost firefighters and their department. When everyone else was running away from the danger, they were running toward it.

If you would like to donate to this fund, send your money to:

LFF Fund for New York's Bravest
c/o The Leary Firefighters Foundation
1697 Broadway, Suite 906
New York, NY 10019

Or, donate to one of the other organizations that are helping to clean up this mess. And if you can, give blood.

[We can't even think of a good closing statement. See you in two weeks, and we promise that we'll be The Legend-News that we ought to be.]

Song A’ Th’ Week
Words without music. Call 'em poems.

These are just the words. The actions behind them are louder.

Old Glory
(Bill Fries, Chip Davis)
From the album Roses For Mama

The Flag She was old, and beautiful, and wise, and She taught the young boy everything he needed to know. All about the land, and the woods and the rivers, and what had happened there even before he was born. She taught him what was good and what was bad. And most of all, the difference between right and wrong.

And so, every morning he stood beside his desk, with his hand over his heart, and promised to respect Her for the rest of his days.

When times were hard, and the grain elevators stood empty against the black Midwestern sky, She gave him praise for a hard day's work, and hope for his father. And She promised there would be better days to come.

And he sat by the radio and cried angry tears one gray December day, when he heard that She'd been betrayed. She was hurt; She needed help. He was only twelve, but he gave Her all he could: scraps of paper and tin cans and even the rubber tires from his wagon. He followed Her across the sea, on the maps and the newspaper, wishing he was older, old enough to fight back.

Then after four long, dark years, he heard the church bells ring and the noon whistle blow long and high. And he was part of one brief moment when all the world paid respect to Her.

And then he was grown up; and suddenly, the world had changed. And there were questions about Her. Some thought She was old-fashioned, useless. Some thought She was dead. But then after all, maybe they hadn't known Her as he had.

And now everyone has grown older. The boy, his children, and She too. He saw Her again just the other day: it was one of those bright, summer mornings and the church bells were ringing again. The bands were playing, and even the noon whistle was blowing, early.

He stood and watched proudly as She passed by. The sunlight catching the flash of crimson and white, stars blazing in the clear blue sky.

And then She was gone.

And he looked down through three generations into his grandson's eyes, and said, "There she goes, son. We used to call her Old Glory."

The Legend-News is Copyright 2001 TechRen Enterprises. "I ask you to kill a single guitarist, and what do I get? Dead bald guys." Thanks to Bill Fries and Chip Davis for the words and music.