2002 - My coworker recently turned me on to a kick-ass Alt-Country band called "The Drive By Truckers" and one of their songs really became my favorite ... "Zip City" taken from their epic "Southern Rock Opera" album.  The more I listened to it, the more "Zip City" reminded me of a relationship I once had way back in the early '90's.  That relationship ended badly through no fault of my own and as I found myself listening to "Zip City" over and over again I kept thinking how close the lyrics were to the relationship that I once had gone through. 

Fast forward a few weeks.  I'd been listening to the Drive By Truckers pretty regularly.  My coworker and I were on a long business trip together when he hooked up his Ipod to our work truck's stereo and started playing "Southern Rock Opera".   I don't know why I did it but when "Zip City" started playing I just started singing my own lyrics to the song as I drove.  My coworker liked the new lyrics so much he encouraged me to pen down the lyrics that I'd come up with and that's what I did.  One day, when I find a band or a couple of musicians that can give me the background tracks to "Zip City" I might grab up a microphone and see if I can outdo Patterson Hood when I croon out these lyrics and record them.  One day ...

Oh, and if you've never been to Flora, MS, count yourself lucky.

 

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FLORA
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( Sung to the tune of "Zip City" by The Drive By Truckers )

Your Daddy’s always quiet as hell
He hardly ever says a word to me.
Don't know what his problem is.
Don’t know why I'm dating you ...
Don't know why I put up with all this ...
When you’re never gonna change and Flora's so far away

Your Daddy’s an old man that's worked hard all his life
And he makes good money as long as those bulls keep fetching a real good price
Your Mama's as good a wife and mother as she can be
And she keeps the city’s library real quiet in a building that’s shared with the Flora PD
Your brother was the second-born and he damn sure can’t ride a bike
Found that out at USM one day when he gave you the scare of your life.

Baby, it's a hundred and twenty-six mile drive from Hattiesburg to Flora one way
Don’t know why I drive that far
When I’ve only got a couple of hours to stay
Maybe you're just a replacement, someone I let get way too close
Maybe you're just a distraction for this twenty-two year-old
All your baggage, girl, it ain’t worth the drive
But by the time you figure out what you've got
I'll be long gone getting on with the rest of my life

You tell me that you're different, that you're not like all the rest
You tell me you’ll love me for the rest of your life
But you always go to pieces when your luck ain't the best
Makes me think twice about ever taking you as my wife
When you're 23 years old, girl, and mama and daddy still tell you what you can do
It's easy to see that old chapel way up at Mississippi State
ain't ever going to see no wedding between me and you

Flora; it’s just another pot hole on the state map of Mississippi
It’s a two hour drive up to Flora then two hours back to the Hub City
I got an ’89 IROC-Z with T-tops and Tuned Port Injection
Overdrive gets me twenty miles to the gallon
When I head in that direction.


 

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