No Fool

No Fool

I wrote this riding my motorcycle home one lunch hour in 1980. Compton to the southern tip of Long Beach in 12 minutes. It wasn’t something I did every day but, when you work in a big warehouse in Compton and you ride the bus 3 hours a day when it rains… sometimes it’s almost like magic to be able to see the ocean and make a cheese sandwich in your own kitchen on your lunch hour.

I pulled up in front of the shoebox-sized apartment I had at the time on the Alamitos Peninsula, threw the bike up on the center stand and ran upstairs and grabbed a guitar and my notebook. (That’s notebook, as in spiral-bound… this was 1980.)

Simple chords underlay the melody I’d had in my head… a modified 12 bar blues. There was another verse in between the current second and third, which I eventually dropped.

At the time, I was writing a lot of dark, cynical, and/or just plain depressing songs (imagine, if you will), many of which ended up performed by Machine Dog, the band some friends and I had formed. By contrast, this seemed almost cheerful, with its vaguely reggae feel and sappy, wait-by-the-telephone protagonist.

NO FOOL

Sitting all alone
by my telephone
Waited all day
but that’s okay
I could wait all night
and that would be all right
for a woman like you
I would wait all my life

Sometimes I pull myself together
and I go downtown
I’m all dressed up
and I wander around
and I feel like a fool
I can’t stop thinking of you
When you’re all alone
this city’s so cruel

I walk along the river
until the stars come out
I sit by myself alone in the dark
and I wonder
Oh yes I wonder
I’m just like a child
but I am no fool
I know it’s over

(C)1980, TK Major

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