I once was in Branson, Missouri where I saw an older man who looked like Hank Williams serving popcorn at an Elvis impersonators show. He'd sing as he served, a few verses of "Jambalaya" or "Your Cheatin' Heart." Turns out, he played Hank in the morning revue which wasn't all that popular. Turns out that not so many people wanted to see a fake Hank as much as they wanted to see a fake Elvis. Their are whole cottage industries devoted to impersonating the King which makes sense -- Elvis performed with lots of bells and whistles which are easy to imitate. Of course, it's all an attempt to get at the soul, which makes for a much tougher time. The fake Hank had to be sixty which left me thinking that the real Hank died at age 29, looking as beat to hell as anything. As my friend Hank used to say, It's not the years, it's the mileage and everyone I have ever known named Hank has had plenty of mileage.
We become the things we love, even if we aren't stuck in some hellish reprisal of them for the rest of our days. I once heard an Elvis impersonator say, The best thing in life is to be someone else. Elvis didn't have problems, not like me. I'm guessing Elvis would have been shocked as hell to find out that he didn't have any difficulties, that it was all smooth sailing in the Jungle Room. I think of the icons I love the most and they seem like nothing but a beautiful mess to me, impossible to capture in their full glory and misery. Like Hank Williams. The name means gracious and sometimes it's listed as meaning ruler. But as Hank W. himself would say, it also means being drunk out of your mind, heartsick, broken, close to death. You can hear it in his voice. Even when he sings about seeing the light, it's a painful horrible light and you feel as if it might go out at any minute.Michelle's Spell of the Day
"A man does not look behind the door unless he has stood there himself." Henri du Bois
Drinking movie suggestion: Fargo
Benedictions and Maledictions