i’m hungry for laughter

in case you were worried. i downloaded the rest of the song. tommy locks the barroom door, kicks some gatlin brother ass, then apologizes to his dad. end of story.

you probably don’t want me to go into the trauma of a bar in toledo and a woman named lucille with 12 hungry children.

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10 Comments

  1. pixie 19.Apr.02 at 3:59 pm

    Kenny Rogers’ Greatest Hits is the first record album i ever owned. i listened to it on my fisher price player. i was three and i couldn’t read the small print, so my dad marked an L on the side with Lucille in turquoise crayola. this helped me immensely.

    coward of the county was one of my favorites before I knew what it was about. I was eight when I finally realized what Kenny meant by “they took turns with Becky.” This changed the entire song for me. I became perversely obsessed with it.

    When I got into my rebellious patriarchy-hating teenaged years, I started taking issue with the song, because of the next lines: “Tommy opened up the door and saw his Becky cryin. The torn dress, the shattered look was more than he could stand.” So what does Tommy do? Does he comfort poor Becky, go to her and act as the emotional support she no doubt needs? NO. Instead, since her being raped was more than HE could stand, he leaves her there ALONE to go beat some ass. I had a big problem with this. Damn that Tommy, he put his own needs before Becky’s. She’s assaulted by the gatlin boys and then abandoned by the man who’s supposed to love her. This issue came between me and Kenny big time. Only in my twenties have I become more forgiving of Tommy. He had a rough life, that one. He didn’t turn out so bad for a kid whose Daddy died in prison.

    This concludes my mini-seminar on how Kenny Roger’s lyrics defined my coming of age.

  2. Linsey 19.Apr.02 at 5:19 pm

    yes, please…tell me about lucille’s 12 hungry babies.

  3. g. 19.Apr.02 at 11:28 pm

    When I was little, I used to mishear “twelve hungry children” as “twelve hundred children”.

    Which is a lot of children. Not to mention the crops in the field.

    In related news, my brain also translates the lyric “If I had a million DOLLARS” into “If I had a million DAUGHTERS”.

  4. jodi 19.Apr.02 at 11:32 pm

    pixie if i were a lesbian nad you were a lesbian i’d want you to be my girlfriend.

  5. jodi 19.Apr.02 at 11:33 pm

    g, would you be shocked and appalled to learn that allegedly lucille only has four hungry children? i’m not sure i’m buying it but the best friend says it’s so.

  6. g. 20.Apr.02 at 12:34 am

    She is right! A lyric search proves me so, so wrong.

    I am relieved for Lucille, but concerned about my hearing.

  7. pixie 20.Apr.02 at 10:59 am

    *blush* that is awfully nice of you to say jodi.

    My .02$ on the Lucille matter: we always sang it, “Four hundred children took a crap in the field.”

  8. jodi 20.Apr.02 at 11:06 am

    oh! that’s just great disrespect for kenny. i’m listening to the gambler as i type. i am greatly disturbed by this recent obsession.

  9. g. 20.Apr.02 at 7:23 pm

    Fear not, Jodi. For it did come to pass that my old boss played repeatedly the CD of Kenny Rogers in the office, for a boss may control the music of all who hear. And he said unto us, Is it not good? And we said, No, it is not good. And he remained steadfast, playing the CD for many days and many nights, whereupon a stirring in our hearts was felt for Reuben James. And we saw that it was good.

  10. ramhluna hnamte 06.Apr.04 at 8:24 pm

    I desperately want to know the story behind the songs reuben james and Ruby.Rama.