Monday, January 19, 2009

Big Ole Chedo Lino

So you know how you can hear the lyrics of a song wrong?

And then, even after you know the right lyrics, even after learning that your version is completely inane, you still have a hard time letting go of it? That's just how it is, and that's that?

Or maybe this doesn't happen to you.

See, last night Nick said I'd ruined this one particular song for him for good. This song by the Steve Miller Band, called Jet Air Liner. Big old jet airliner, don't carry me too far away. Big old jet airliner, 'cause it's here that I've got to stay.

Or, in my world, the Big Ole Chedo Lino song.

You know, Big Ole Chedo Lino, don't carry me too far away. Big Ole Chedo Lino...

It's a song I think I heard for the first time in high school. And probably didn't learn the correct lyrics until at least a decade later. It was most likely Maude who corrected me, since there are so few people I sing with.

Chedo Lino, in my mind, was roughly the size of Paul Bunyan. Enormous. Not dangerous, just enormous. Fully capable of carrying you too far away. He'd probably carry you back to Bemidji, in fact.

See, I grew up spending my summers in Minnesota and North Dakota. Driving past gigantor Paul Bunyan and his trusty Babe the Blue Ox. Chedo Lino, for me, he wasn't such a stretch.

I'm not saying I'm propagating this version. It's more that it's very hard to let go.


  1. Bad Moon on the Rise will always be Bathroom's on the Right to me.
    I totally understand.

  2. I always thought that John Lennon was "whispered with loam" in Norwegian Wood, and in order to make that work in my mind, I also had to think that "loam" was not rich topsoil, but a sort of soap scum you could get all over your clothes if you slept in a tub. Turns out it was "this bird had flown," which didn't make any sense at all because there were no birds in the song.

    I know. Now I know. Women are "birds" in British.

  3. I used to think Bryan Adams was saying "nice fucking night" instead of "cute like a knife." Imagine my mom's horror when I sang along at 10 years old.

  4. "Hey Mr. Tamborine Man" became "Hey Mr. Dan Marino" for me!

  5. heh. I was just discussing this with someone. Fall out boy has a line in their song, Arms race, that says:

    "oh so intricate."

    But I hear it as:

    "also into cats."

    There are a lot of you tube videos like this out there. :)

  6. Haha! I knew it would be that song!
    My husband thought these Thievery Corporation lyrics: "Why don't you treat me like the way you should" really said this: "Why don't you treat me like your favorite shoe" which actually kind of makes sense.

  7. For me The Pretenders are always singing about a "pigeon from Hell," not a "vision from Hell." My husband laughed his ass off the first time I sang along. Which is okay, since he is completely TONE DEAF.

  8. The Proclaimers' song 500 Miles was always "Shot of vodka!" to my friends and I in college.

    I don't think we even cared what the real words were...

  9. This is so embarrassing, when I was younger I always thought Robert Plant was singing the song to a woman named Olive: "Olive my love, Olive my love, Olive my love to you."

    Of course, the funniest one I've ever heard of, and this isn't mine, is Jimi Hendrix: "Excuse me while I kiss this guy." That one makes me laugh every time.

  10. Ummm . . . this made me laugh out loud! So much so, that my husband who is sitting nearby talking on the phone motioned to me to shhh.


  11. My mom tried to teach me an REO Speedwagon song. she always said "enough of the jealousy and the entire nation" instead of "enough of the jealousy and the intoleration." She always argued with me about that too!

    I'm hearing impaired so a lot of the songs I hear are very hard for me to understand without looking at lyrics. Conversation is always fun though.. a few years ago, we were discussing the Dallas Cowboys and my uncle said "the cowboys lost" and I stared at him for a full minute trying to figure out what "applesauce" had to do with anything.

  12. You kill me! I'm still laughing. And the crazy thing is I can actually see myself buying into your Chedo Lino = Paul Bunyan comparison.

  13. These had me laughing so hard. I've been in DC since yesterday mid-day, so away from the computer. It was so fun to come home, be warm, and read these hilarious comments.

    Hillary - Oh, I genuinely love this so much. Bathroom's on the right. This is fantastic.

    Alex - That's really quite poetic, actually. He slept in the tub and awoke whispered with loam. His sleeping in the bathtub always annoyed me in that song, actually.

    Lemmonex - This is really and truly fantastic. Nice fucking night. I can only imagine your mother's horror. Although some tiny piece of her must've thought it was funny.

    Katherine - Because I know nothing about football or really sports at all I just looked him up...and I was going to ask why Mr. Dan Marino would be asked to "play a song for me" but really, that would be as dumb as someone asking me why Steve Miller made up someone named Chedo Lino. Sometimes it's just like that.

    Slightly Disorganized - So funny! I can totally hear that song in my head and "also into cats" slides into it very easily.

    A.S. - Cool that you knew! As for "the way you should" and "like your favorite shoe" - as you point out, they are very close to the same thing, actually.

    J - Yes! I thought the same thing for years! I am soooo glad to hear this! Pigeon from Hell. I just never sang that out loud in front of anyone.

    aimeec - And sometimes, the real words don't matter anyway!

    FoggyDew - This is one of the best things I've ever heard. I love both "Olive my love" and picturing Jimi Hendrix singing "Excuse me while I kiss this guy" makes me laugh out loud.

    Jennifer - It makes me happy to hear that. :)

    Jenn - My mom, like me, is not the best with song lyrics either. I'm not hearing impaired, but I have a terrible time discerning song lyrics. And I think sometimes I just don't listen well enough, so I can completely understand the "applesauce" confusion.

    prettylittletangents - Thank you! I mean, the guy would have to be tremendously big to pick you up and carry you so far away.

  14. Actually, the correct lyrics to the song by Thievery Corporation are "Why you don't treat them like the way you should?" If you google the song title "State of the union" you can read the lyrics; which are pretty difficult to understand most of the time.

  15. Typo correction, the quote is "Why you don't treat THEM like the way you should?"


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