Paranoia strikes deep in the heartland

Fredonia, NY – July 17, 2016

The Wife had made all the travel arrangements for our vacation, and she was pretty successful, except for that Ramada near Ashtabula, OH . To quote Elizabeth Taylor, who was quoting Bette Davis, “What a dump.”

But something was amiss with our reservation in Fredonia, NY. We’d be traveling much of the day, and it was already 8 pm. While the Wife and Daughter went into the hotel, trying successfully to get a room, I sat in the passenger seat in the car.

And for some reason – probably watching the news too much, with black men getting killed, police getting killed – I started wondering what would happen if a police officer happened to come by, wanting to know what I was sitting there. Now I’ve waited in the car for years, without incident. Why it was an issue at that moment was probably because it was getting dark, and/or from fatigue.

I realized that if a cop HAD come up to me, I couldn’t roll down the window. We used to have two of those car fobs, but one got lost, and I didn’t have it.

In short order, I came up with all sorts of scenarios by which I could get shot because my hands couldn’t be seen. I bolted out of the car in a near-panic. To distract myself, I pulled out my tablet and played hearts.
The Daughter came back, and yelled, “Did you get it?” I didn’t know what “it” was. “It” was the sunset, which was gorgeous, and I was utterly oblivious to it.

She mocked me for playing my game, but I was in a whole ‘nother head.

A few weeks later, I was at work when I got a notice that there was a bank robbery in a building within the visual range of my office. The suspect was a black male in his 40s or 50s. I’m in my 60s, but I was nearby. I recalled this article. That same wave of discomfort ran over me.

So who can identify the source of the lyric that is the title of this piece? (Besides Dustbury.)

Author: Roger

I'm a librarian. I hear music, even when it's not being played. I used to work at a comic book store, and it still informs my life. I won once on JEOPARDY! - ditto.

7 thoughts on “Paranoia strikes deep in the heartland”

  1. Hi folks
    paranoia it strikes deep…into your heart it will creep.
    it starts when you are always afraid better be careful..

    OK it is one of our generation’s best. (songs Buffalo Springfield and CSNY)

    Leonard Pitt’s column quoted from it today… see link below.

    Miss seeing you and and the family this summer and at other gatherings.

    I read facebook but I cannot honor the venue with a posting at this time.
    researching this song I found this:

    Here is what one trusted venue riffed in 2016.

    same song. We are our own worst ukw.
    Stay well.
    We have many friends backs. best Kat

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