Old Lazarus Lightfoot, apparently, woke up from one of his many naps during a documentary on the sinking of the Edmund Fitzgerald and discovered that crew error may not have been the reason one of the hatches caved in, but a giant wave was responsible (DAMN YOU GIANT WAVE! WHY MUST YOU RUIN EVERYTHING!). Upon seeing this Gordo thought perhaps he’d better change the lyrics of the tune so that it no longer casts doubt upon that brave and sadly dead crew.
Now personally I’m not a big fan of Lightfoot or The Wreck of the Eddie Fitz; it sounds like two chimps clapping their butt cheeks together to me, but here’s the trick Gordie, how are you going to get a significant number of people to bother to relearn the words to the one song that everyone knows from you?
To me this is another instance of science – or near science, or something that sounds good enough to sound like science and therefore become generally accepted – ruining things. Scientists told us that the Brontosaurus no longer/never existed (keep in mind though it was scientists that told us it existed in the first place); scientists told us that Pluto, because it failed to pay its membership dues, is no longer a planet. Now science is telling us that it was a big giant wave that crashed the ship.
Okay… fine. Big giant wave (HOW I HATE YOU WAVE!?!) or not – how do we prove that it was not human error? Does the hatch look like a wave hit it? IT WAS A BOAT! If I produce another documentary that shows a dramatization of the crew not locking the hatch, will you change the lyrics back?
This makes me want to write another song… The Wreck of The Wreck of Edmund Fitzgerald… its just the original song with the following two verses added on:
Gordie saw on the TV right there
a documentary on it
How the hatch didn't blow it was the wave that did so
And he got a bee in his bonnet
"I'll change me the lyrics" he said to the wall
"I'll blame it on that giant wave.
Then people will see that I am still alive
And I haven't gone to the grave."
So he put out the word he was puttin' out words
And changing the lyrics by June
He wrote about sails to drum up some sales
Out of a long forgotten tune
But no one will remember when it come to September
Except for his own cousin Harald
That he spent all that time, commiting the crime
Wrecking the Wreck of the Edmund Fitzgerald.