The Legend-News

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Monday, 2002 April 15 : Volume 5, Number 8

What We Got Here in this edition of The Legend-News.

Behind The Scenes at The Legend-News
The truth. We swear!

Every once in a while, someone asks us "just who is 'the staff of The Legend-News?'" Our answer usually includes a reference to Ed. (hey, that's me!), Lisa (a.k.a. The Wife), and Tesoro, Galore, and Scarlett Louise (a.k.a The Hangers-On). But to tell the truth, "the staff" is really just one person: me (a.k.a. Ed.). Yeah, there really isn't a "staff"; it's just one guy with a PowerBook and an obsession with C.W. McCall.

Except for the occasional contribution from the fans of C.W. McCall (and stuff that we've swiped from other sources), The Legend-News is written, pasted, coded, and mailed by li'l ol' Ed. The other "staff" members contribute nothin' to the process; well, Lisa supplies the tolerance for her husband's hobby, Tesoro keeps the papers on the desk by laying on them, Scarlett Louise provides the humorous interludes with the "feather-duster" cat toy, and Galore attempts to reduce eyestrain by blocking the monitor with her furry body.

The actual writing of each issue occurs during the two weeks prior to publication. Some articles have been ready for weeks, awaiting their turn (the current T.Tommy and C.W. transcripts), some were written as the muse struck (ow!), and other were created at almost the last minute because Ed. was procrastinating. (Yeah, like I'm getting paid for this. — Ed.)

Then, on the Saturday night before the Monday of publication, Ed. sits down at the PowerBook, puts iTunes on shuffle and starts putting together the issue. By the time that he retires that night (remembering to set the VCR to catch the midnight broadcast of the syndicated Stargate SG-1 and the 1:05 A.M. broadcast of Relic Hunter) he has a fairly-complete issue ready to go. The links may still need to be checked, and the spelling might have a few errrors, but the basic content and layout have been done.

Sometime on Sunday, Ed. tweaks the issue, fixing the problems and making a plain-text copy for the mailing lists. And 'round about 6 P.M. (7 P.M. Eastern), he pops another tape into the VCR to catch all of the Sunday FOX shows and sits down for one last check of the issue, updating any late-breaking news. Finally, after he's certain that he can't make it any better, he uploads the newest, delicious issue to the web site and sends the text copy to the Other Wild Places and Legend-News mail lists, and waits for the inevitable bounced messages.

Finally, after dealing with the bounced mail, he sets his radio to a Chicago rock station (WLUP, 97.9 FM) and plugs the stereo into the PowerBook and starts recording the Dr. Demento Show for later listening (yes, Virginia, you can time-shift radio broadcasts). He crawls into bed and sleeps the sleep of the just, knowing that he's given the fans of C.W. McCall another fix of their favorite newsletter.

Now, if he could just lose this habit of referring to himself in the third person…


C.W. McCall Tour 2002 and Other Events
Four miles north of Mondamin.

At last count, we've got eleven people who have said that they'll be on the Tour 2002. If you find that number unimpressive, why not raise it a bit by joining us? We'll even let you sign the official "Tour 2002" t-shirt. Okay, so the t-shirt is actually a left-over from Convoy 2000 with the last zero in "2000" crossed-out and a "2" written above it, but it's still the official shirt!

The generalities: the C.W. McCall Tour 2002 is a two-day event, taking place on Friday, June 7 and Saturday, June 8. Our base will be in Omaha, Nebraska, and we'll be buzzing around the east end of Nebraska and the west end of Iowa in a whirlwind trip, visiting the towns that C.W. McCall has mentioned in his songs.

See the Tour 2002 section for more information, and warm up your vocal chords by downloading the karaoke version of "Convoy" from the TechRen FTP site.

And, The World's Largest Truck Convoy is in Orlando, Florida on July 20. See the February 18 issue of the Legend-News. From news reports that we've read, the one's going to be big. So big, that Special Olympics International might be sponsoring many such convoys in the years to come. Yeah, coming to a town near you, a lot of big trucks stuck in traffic. Sorta like I-90/94 in Gary, Indiana.

World's Largest Truck Convoy logo

Meanwhile, Back At The Critter Ranch
What the fans are doing.

If you're read the lyrics page for "Classified" — which, by no coincidence, was last issue's "Song A’ Th’ Week" — then you may have noticed a question at the bottom of the page:

Wait a minute… if C.W. drove the '57 Chevy away from Bob's, what happened to the vehicle in which he drove to Bob's? (Thanks to Steve Mizar for bringing up that puzzling question.)

Well, Greg McAuley noted another oddity of "Classified", one that we hadn't noticed:

Ok, I didn't think about asking the question "what happened to the vehicle that he drove to Bob's house?" But what I used to always question was, during the phone call, how did Bob know that he was "Fourteen east on County 12" with respect to CW's location?

We pondered that question, and decided that the best answer was "because C.W. had told Bob where he (C.W.) was, and Bob then gave him the directions", but that information wasn't in the song: it happened offstage, like a death in Shakespeare. Or maybe, unbeknownst to us all and himself, C.W. was an alien abductee who had a tracking chip implanted in his skull, and Bob was actually in the employ of the aliens and knew how to access this locating device.

Or maybe, just maybe, we need a bit more sleep…


Old Home Café
Back where it all began

C.W. McCall continues his week of co-hosting Music City U.S.A. with T. Tommy Cutrer, November 1975. This selection is from Thursday's show, November 20.

[T. Tommy] So let me ask you about the fishin', C.W. You said you're a fisherman, love to trout-fish.

[C.W.] Yeah, I love it.

[T. Tommy] Is there a particular time of the year that's best to go trout fishing?

[C.W.] Yeah, early in the spring — in the mountains, that is — when the mayfile hatches are on and that means, you know, that the flies that are flyin' around.

[T. Tommy] They tell us that some of those dry flies you use are mayflies.

[C.W.] Yeah, mayfly drys.

[T. Tommy] Now do you tie your own flies?

[C.W.] No, I'm just gettin' started on that, T. I'm tryin' to learn it; it's a very, very delicate art, fly-tyin'. But it's good for those winter nights in Nebraska when you haven't much else to do. You wanna sit down, get out your magnifying glass and take a piece a' little thread and tinsel and tiny little feathers and hackles and so on and tie yourself a fly. I'm gonna get into that. But I really like what goes on when you tie one of those on.

[T. Tommy] It's bad news then, isn't it?

[C.W.] Yeah, it is the greatest thrill to have a trout attack a dry fly on top of a stream or on top of a lake. We had it happen here just this last summer. We were up at a place called Lost Lake, and we had what we call a "muddler minnow" on the end of an eight-foot leader. And we were out in a little boat and we made a couple a' false casts and then dropped it out there and that fish, a big rainbow, just struck that thing like a ton a' bricks. Jumped right outta the lake. It's a big thrill, you know.

[T. Tommy] I can imagine. I'd love to do that sometime.

[Later that same day…]

[T. Tommy] I don't know about this story, this "Four Wheel Drive" story. I keep worryin' about you goin' up into these mountains, takin' your family up there. Do you all go and camp-out, actually?

[C.W.] Oh, yeah, sleepin' bags and… we started out with tents, the whole schmear, you know, with everything and wound up in trailers at one time; but now we're back to the basics. We just take a little mountain tent and a couple a' goose-down sleeping bags and a little small cook kit and away we go. The smaller and lighter, the better.

[T. Tommy] Did you ever try that in the winter time up there?

[C.W.] I haven't been up there in the wintertime. My boys have both been camping out in the winter, and I mean winter. You know, well below zero and a lotta snow and all that. I'm gettin' a little too old for that.

[T. Tommy] They don't catch bad colds or anything serious?

[C.W.] No, they're as healthy as they can be.

[T. Tommy] Tough little fellas. Well, I'd come up there and camp out with y'all, but I'd like for it to be about 70 at night.

[C.W.] 70 at night?

[T. Tommy] Yeah, that's my kind of campin' out. And I'd like maybe a motor home, if you could have that on hand when I get there. I don't believe I could go by on that sleeping bag.

[C.W.] You don't want to rough it, then.

[T. Tommy] Well, not that much, C.W.


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

Four Wheel Drive
(Bill Fries, Chip Davis)
From the album Wolf Creek Pass

We is screamin' through the valley
Where the Nishnabotna flows
Through the mud and crud and cornfields
Where the mari-ju-wana grows
'Cross the railroad tracks of Persia
Down the hills and up the dale
Had a CJ-5 with a four-wheel drive
And Smokey on my tail.

Well, he picked me up at exit 12
On the I-six-eighty ramp
I was doin' 67 per
When I rumbled through his trap
He commenced to whirl his flashin' lights
And he made his siren wail
I slipped on down to four-wheel drive
With Smokey on my tail

Now I got racin' stripes and dual pipes
And Smokey's got a Ford
Got a mill with a four pot carb, you know
But Smokey's stroked and bored
Well, the chase was on, but I had the edge
With a rig that'll never fail
Got a CJ-5 with a four-wheel drive
And Smokey on my tail

Yeah, he was.

Well, I dropped on down to granny low
And I made a hard right turn
My big ol' fat Commando tires
Went slashin' through the corn
Well, the tassels blew
And the kernels flew
And it looked like yella hail
Just cookin' alive in a four-wheel drive
With Smokey on my tail

Well, we went screamin' through the valley
Where the Nishnabotna flows
Through the mud and crud and cornfields
Where the mari-ju-wana grows
'Cross the railroad tracks of Persia
Up the hills and down the dales
My CJ-5 with four-wheel drive
And Smokey on my tail.

Look out, now. Here he come.

Oh, we gonna get it on now.

(Don't hit that fella with the banjo.)

We gonna swim this here creek now, Smokey.

Yard wide and a foot deep.

"Nishnabota River", they call it.

Might have ta winch out.

Gonna do a wheelie on that there gopher mound now, Smokey.

Can you dig it, Smokey?

Got four on the floor and four in the air on that one, didn't we?

Goodness gracious. 'Bout ta bust my shocks.

Well, that Jeep of mine made Smokey whine
His rig was made a' lead
He was mired in fourteen feet of mud
So he radioed ahead
I pulled up onto the blacktop
Went crashin' on through the rail
Sakes alive! I had twenty-five more
Smokeys on my tail!

Now I had racin' stripes and dual pipes
And Smokey had a Ford
Had a mill with a four pot carb, you know
But Smokey's stroked and bored
Well, the race was on, but I had the edge
With a rig that'll never fail
Got a CJ-5 with a four-wheel drive
Settin' out back a' the jail


"Four Wheel Drive" can be found on the album C.W. McCall’s Greatest Hits.


Old Home Café
Part Two

[T. Tommy] That's a great story, too. Below zero and they sleepin' on the ground? Only time they's supposed to do that is in wartime.


The Legend-News is Copyright 2002 TechRen Enterprises. "The General Ryan? Shouldn't there have been a memo?" Thanks to Bill Fries and Chip Davis for the words and music.