Bob Dylan's Beard

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Bungalow Bill or The Continuing Story of How George Bush Parades Around the Desert

Bungalow Bill

Jack Handey, of SNL’s “Deep Thoughts” fame, recently gave a speech on NPR called “My Speech to the Martians.”  It’s a very fine commentary on human-martian relations.

I think my favorite line is: “I came here in peace, seeking gold and slaves, but you have treated me like an intruder.”

This imagery of the bungling human (or American) reminds me of my newest, favorite Beatles song from the White Album.  When I hear this song I can’t help thinking of “W” and his masterful foreign relations policy.  Mr. President is Bungalow Bill. The song describes a rich, young American and his mother who come to India to stay at the ashram of the Maharishi, Mahesh Yogi, and happen to be there at the time the Beatles are there. What actually happened is somewhat disputed, but one way or another, the young man went out on an elephant, killed a tiger, and came back to the ashram proud of his kill.  John didn’t seem to like this American even before the incident, but he remarked “But wouldn’t you call that slightly life-destructive?” although others claimed that it was a necessary defence.  No matter what actually happened, a great song was created from it.  This song is also special because it has the only female lead vocal (Yoko) on any Beatles track – a single line. 

Hey, Bungalow Bill
What did you kill
Bungalow Bill?

He went out tiger hunting with his elephant and gun
In case of accidents he always took his mom
He’s the all American bullet-headed saxon mother’s son.
All the children sing

Hey Bungalow Bill
What did you kill
Bungalow Bill?

Deep in the jungle where the mighty tiger lies
Bill and his elephants were taken by surprise
So Captain Marvel zapped in right between the eyes
All the children sing

Hey, Bungalow Bill
What did you kill
Bungalow Bill?

The children asked him if to kill was not a sin
Not when he looked so fierce, his mother butted in
If looks could kill it would have been us instead of him
All the children sing

Hey, Bungalow Bill
What did you kill
Bungalow Bill?

 I can imagine Bungalow Bill giving a similar speech to the Martians.

The Beatles – The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill

May 19, 2008 Posted by | The Beatles | , , , , , , , | 3 Comments