Dr. Eckstein

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about

Anyone that knows me knows that my short term memory is just atrocious. Just last night I was going to have a couple waffles with butter and jam. I took out the waffles but then decided to have left over spaghetti. So I put the waffles back and put the spaghetti in the microwave. Stay with me, people; I'm going to make a point. So, while waiting for my dinner to be ready I go to the refrigerator and pull out the butter and jam then I get a butter knife and put them by the microwave.

Let me tell you now that short term and long term memory have nothing to do with each other.

In much the same way that I came up with the lyric for "Boogie Mambo Cha-cha," I found myself singing to myself: "Dassa what I'm a-gonna do". Before driving myself mad with this repetitive hook, I called up Jeff and made him come over so we can turn it into a song. I remember explaining it to him when he arrived. He asked what the starting idea I had was so I sang him the line and he just sat there waiting for the rest. Once he realized that that was it, we build up the rhythm, bass line, and other parts to fit it.

Now going ten years back, my friends Scott Moore, Dave Moadel, and I would get together every now and then and improvise with a typewriter. We'd just spew out pages and pages of bad jokes, skits, non-sequitor short stories, and pointless poems.

In the midst of jamming with Jeff, I remembered a lyric-of-sorts that I wrote while mildly drunk about 10 years earlier. I knew it would be perfect. It took me 15-20 minutes to dig through my pile of crap to find the first draft of "Dr. Eckstein". I edited and added to the words to make them fit.

lyrics

I suppose, like me,
you wonder what on Earth I'm doing here.
I'll fix your bones, cure your stones,
and be home in time for beer.
I need a long vacation,
I'm still living at home
I'll take a paid sick day,
Tijuana on the phone

Paging Dr. Eckstein - Tijuana on the phone
Tourist information - Listen for the tone (ping!)

Embarassed by the p.a.
Good thing no one's listening
My overpaid secretary always seems to be missing
Mrs. Cronin's moanin' like a dog bit by a hare
I'll bet her mouth is foaming
and I'll bet that I don't care

I don't want to die here - Don't want to be here
Just want to fly
I got to disappear - Won't wait 'til next year
Tijuana time

Dassa what I'm a-gonna do

Gonna take a Coffee break ...
siesta ...

Again I'm in my office, hmm.
When did I get back here?
Last I knew, oceans blue and I'm drinking yellow beer
Pamphlets on my mesa with photos of cerveza
Served by pretty ladies and
I'm stuck here in my Hades

Paging Dr. Eckstein - Tijuana on the phone
Tourist information - Another chance is blown

Old man Arnold Lipschitz, I think he died again
I think I sewed my scalpel up next to my favorite pen.
The muzak rips my soul like an old infected cactus
I'll show up to my wake
wearing a black suit of malpractice

I don't want to die here - Don't want to be here
Just want to fly
I got to disappear - Won't wait 'til next year
Tijuana time

Dassa what I'm a-gonna do

Gonna take a Coffee break ...
siesta ...

I don't remember med school.
I don't where I live.
I know that I'm just passing time
that's passing through a sieve.
I've been here in the break room for an hour
maybe three.
I'm thinking that I'll stay here
just pretending that I'm free.

Yeah, dassa what I'm a-gonna do

credits

from How It Is Nowadays (2003), released October 31, 2003
music: Adam Rabin & Jeff Margolis
lyrics: Adam Rabin

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about

Adam Rabin Burlington

Where Prog Rock meets Geek Rock. Adam Rabin is a Vermont songwriter/multi-instrumentalist who has also played with Elephants of Scotland, Mailbox, and musical improv troupe She Thicc. You can also hear Adam’s music on the podcasts: Improvised Weapons, Improv Overdrive, What The Hell Are You Watching, and Vermont Favorites. ... more

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